As society becomes increasingly polarized on socio-politico-economic issues, I have to pause, breathe deeply and maybe disengage before allowing myself to react versus responding thoughtfully, if that’s what I choose. And even more so when I’m triggered and can feel my emotions churn heatedly inside my gut. Or as I hear the words sharpening in my mind ready to lash out into cyberspace, which has become the acceptable norm for “communication”. But I’ve seen and experienced that it accomplishes nothing; neither for me personally nor for the greater good.
When I say “yes” but wanna say “no” I feel an instant pang of regret. I’ve failed myself by ignoring my needs and my intuition. It’s that all too familiar pattern from my childhood that I swore I’d never repeat. It stems from being raised in an environment where love felt conditional, which created this persistent fear of disappointing others and a constant need for approval. To be self-sacrificing was considered the “righteous” thing to do. Putting myself first was considered selfish. So, I’m a recovering people-pleaser.
I believe that authenticity is the foundation for everything. I’ve gotta feel comfortable in my own skin; knowing who I am, what I believe, and what I stand for. Plus what I want, need, and desire to feel successful and fulfilled. And those things shift because life lessons build wisdom, life circumstances show me the impact of choice, and relationships serve as mirrors. So it requires constant self-awareness. But without being grounded in my truth, I have no integrity or sense of direction. And as someone who was raised in a cult, with a value and belief system forced upon me, I know how disempowering that feels. Because I was raised in a high control religion, I believe