A wounded story: Got One?

Vintage Ad #882: Mr. Me-Bee Wants to Write a Storybook About You!

LOVE A GOOD STORY?

Tell me your story. I will listen. Nothing you tell me will make me think less of you, because of your experiences. Truly.

Everyone has something that hurtsold hurt, new hurt or just a constant feeling of hurt.

It creates a story that we BELIEVE about ourselves.

If we’re not careful, we’ll take those experiences and make them a part of who we believe we are, which isn’t true.

I’ve found that most people just want to be heard, compassionately listened to and cared for as a lovable being. It validates their existence.

In our society, many people don’t want to hear the messiness of stories. These people change the subject immediately; perhaps they put a positive spin on it or walk away. 

Some cannot handle the distress of others, because it brings out their own personal distress. They prefer it to remain buried, hoping it’ll just go away. Unfortunately, it manifests itself in many ways, anxiety, depression, an “ism”, and so on.

EXPRESSING PAIN IS OKAY.

Venting, sharing, crying and then hopefully laughing at how much impact we allow outside events/people to have in our lives is the hoped for outcome.

We all have stories, but its how much you believe those stories and where they incapacitate you that becomes the problem.

Some people love their painful stories, they don’t just share with a willing ear, they share with any ear. In this instance, it becomes beneficial to the “teller.” It gives them attention and little incentive to make appropriate changes to their perception, to live a more quality existence.

People can remain victimized by their painful stories. And when you’re either sharing it with everyone you meet, beating yourself over the head with it or believing this story must continue into the future, you are not being true to yourself.

These stories are NOT who we are, they are experiences that have happened.

Identifying with what other people have said or done, as “who we are,” is a misperception. It gives power to everything outside of us, so we are emotionally tossed about like a boat on an angry ocean.

Tell me your story. I want to hear it, because I can see where the source of pain comes from that radiates throughout your being, as you “live” it through expression.

And after you have told me the story, it’s time to look at why your story is so important to you.

What is the benefit?

There is always a benefit, whether you like being a victim, gaining sympathy, enjoying your sadness or fitting in to an identity that is made up…the story gives you something.

And it also keeps you stuck. 

Most of us want to feel good, no matter what the circumstances are in our lives. It’s just these stories get in the way.

What can you do?

First.

The story isn’t real. Yes, events happen, which create pain. Loss, abandonment, loneliness, etc… all can be very painful.

It’s an experience, which we go through and it affects us, absolutely.

When I say it isn’t real, what I mean is that “the pain is not WHO we are,” it’s not our identity and we don’t deserve it anymore, than anyone else in the world.

Having a story and being the story are two different things. Accept there’s pain, but you don’t have to accept it as your cross to bear.

Second.

Recognize your responsibility (If it was something you participated in). It allows you freedom and control.

If you see where you are responsible, then you know it is not set in stone that you will do the same exact thing again. You will see where your actions and reactions are in your control. And that allows for change.

Third.

Is the story born from years ago, when you decided to believe certain things about yourself based on others or society in general?

These are our most painful stories, because when we were young and vulnerable, we experienced pain. No one wants to experience that again, so we built defenses (old, child-like defenses) and proceeded to react in a way to preserve ourselves.

Whether we give in, hand out or beat down, we are re-enacting the past and keeping the story alive. 

Fourth.

Learn the seed of your story. Understand that it has created limitations in your life. Do you want it to continue to rule?

No?

Then get real. Look at why you think you’re not enough, too much, unlovable, stupid, crazy, etc… and realize it’s a LIE.

It’s not true. You can change your actions NOW. Once you see that you believed something that wasn’t true about you. All sources outside of us are a choice in how we perceive them and their sphere of influence.

Fifth.

Compassion.

Have compassion for yourself and what you have been through. Have compassion for every way that you have mistreated yourself or someone else. The more compassion you have for you, the more you have for others.

And there is no reason at all that you don’t deserve compassion. 

Listen to your story, listen to others stories, see how their stories are untrue too in how they identify themselves.

So….tell me your story.

 

The Depression List

Guess what?

Unless there is a physical reason for your depression you DON’T have to suffer from it for one more stinkin’ minute.

If I can do it and my clients can do it, so CAN you!!!

Can you commit to your own inner well-being and happiness? Because if you can’t who will?

Standstill for 5 minutes; watch your actions, your perceptions and your thoughts. Follow the sensations, thoughts and perceptions through to beyond this moment. I bet if you drew a line to your goal of inner peace and happiness everything you are feeling and knowing would make that line zig zag, go backwards, upside down and then probably back to where you are standing. Feels shitty, huh?

Guess what else?

You JUST took the first step out of depression in becoming aware of yourself. How hard was that exercise? Depends on how disconnected you are from yourself emotionally.

The longer you distract yourself from your emotions, the longer you stay depressed.

NOTHING you accomplish on the outside takes depression away, NOTHING. It’s an inside job.

Don’t give me the lip service of someday your life will begin or you’ll be happy, cuz guess what you’ll still be YOU with those old thoughts, limiting beliefs and same approach you’ve been using for years.

And many yesterdays ago, you thought you’d be happy by now, because everything would have lined right up and you’d be walking on sunshine, so this is YOUR future. And where are you? Depressed?

The longer you are unaware of how your choices cause you pain, the longer and more reasons you create to be depressed.

The longer you think the good choices in the past have bearing on the present the longer you will feel hopeless.

Let’s look at some causes and then the remedies for depression.

1. Denying  joy.

You don’t deserve joy, love, happiness, etc… until you have achieved, blah, blah, blah. I say bullshit to that, because even when you achieve all those things, you will still have the same limiting beliefs, which make you believe suffering and punishment are somehow the road to happiness.

2. Withholding.

Yuck, yuck, yuck. You keep all of it inside of you, pushed down, shoved around…no one knows what you really feel. Where do you think that unexpressed emotion goes? It gets moldy, because it is layered in fear. You’re afraid to recognize or share your feelings from your heart-to be vulnerable. You don’t TRUST yourself or anyone else not to hurt or disappoint you—guess what, it’ll happen and you will survive.

But withholding—it is SLOW SUFFOCATION. It is you creating obstacles; you want the relationship or situation to fail. You are guaranteeing it, because your limited beliefs say “this is what you deserve.”  You are your own dam to the flow of love and life.

3.    Victimhood.

It all happens to you. He did this, she did that, there was an earthquake, my pants shrunk I didn’t gain weight…it says I have no control over my life. It says I have NO say and everything outside of me is a complaint, because I make no choices, it is too hard to change things or I like to wallow in depression, because its COMFORTABLE and SAFE. I do what is expected or I live in my own limited perception, because I control nothing. STOP BLAMING. 

That little voice in your head…that’s you as a child.

It’s you reminding you of the experiences you had as a kid; the negative ones, which created your view of the world with these labels for yourself. It gave you a place and a warped idea of who you really are…and guess what? IT AIN’T TRUE!!!! #1 reason you are depressed.

4.    Lack of love.

When you feel a tingling of love. What happens? Do you cry for your blankie, cuz your scared? Do you associate love with pain, suffering, loss of control? THAT IS NOT LOVE!!!

That’s control, limiting beliefs that you’re not good enough and deserve to be alone, because once someone gets close to you, they’ll see what a loser you are….and BECAUSE YOU believe this, you’ll create it!

5.    Stuck.

It comes from not taking action; doing what you don’t want to do to please an invisible or visible authority, unrealistic expectations in which you feel like you’ve invested and have to keep doing it the same way.

Depression comes from holding on when things don’t work out, not letting go and NOT moving on. Depression comes from wanting things to be different and doing nothing to change it.

6.    Don’t commit to yourself or others, only to what feels crappy.

Depression comes from not living YOUR life. It comes from one foot in and one foot out in your relationships. Not giving it your all or giving something you don’t want your all, so you stay miserable. Screw duty, find a different perception—it will change the duty.

REMEDIES:

  • Stop feeding what you don’t want. Say NO, Say YES…whichever is holding you back….say more.
  • You create more depression by denying joy, fun and allowing….. When you allow, your world changes.
  • STOP waiting for the other shoe to drop. If you keep on believing pain must come, it will, BECAUSE YOU CREATE IT!  HAVE FUN ANYWAY!
  • Stop. Take an emotional risk, the type that makes your teeth chatter with nerves, uncomfortable and scared…yeah, you feel it??? IF IT SCARES THE SHIT OUT OF YOU, Do it!! Do it now! Don’t wait!!! HAVE COURAGE!!
  • If you love someone tell them, show them, be with them, holding back means you feel you don’t deserve the love or feeling good.
  • BE VULNERABLE—it makes YOU courageous. If you compartmentalize or separate your emotions from your everyday life—you are depressed!!! FEEL your FEELINGS—live it up and love your feelings, they’ll love you back when you allow them to coexist in your world.
  • You are unlimited. Act without limitations.
  • Do something that inconveniences you, but brings you joy and excitement. Make the time between the “have to’s” for the “Want to’s”. When I start to get depressed, this is what I know works for sure bring on the BALANCE. I feel in control of my life and my choices. Surprise yourself and others!!! It feels awesome!!!
  • Love doesn’t hurt, I promise. It’s your beliefs about love that hurt. Physically when you focus on love, it feels good. When you focus on the fear of getting hurt or disappointed, your stomach and whole body tense up and your convinced you can’t handle it. Allow yourself to feel your heart, good will come IMMEDIATELY.
  • SHARE, be intimate, trust, allow, bond, open. Depression is closed and lonely. Be the butterfly and watch yourself fly. It’s okay, to withhold is NOT okay, unless you like being depressed and alone.
  • Have goals that are attainable, make your heart pound with excitement and ARE fulfilling.
  • Make today opposite day–do the opposite of your norm!!!
  • Feeling you deserve good and happy, rather than suffering and punishment.
  • Be okay with how things are way less than perfect or how you believe they should look. Life never looks how we want it to for very long. Get used to it.
  • CHOOSE!! Choose you, choose happiness, change your mind. Just make a choice and see what happens.
  • Accept you, stop trying to be someone else or perfect—there are no rewards for anything less than being authentically YOU.
  • Listen to your emotions, feel them, and just be with it, they change like the tide. It connects you to you.
  • When limiting thoughts and beliefs come up, ask their truth. Are they valid? Or bullshit. You have as much right to happiness as anyone else. 

And call or email me, I can help you to attain this level of living….tracy@tracycrossley.com

And watch for my ecourse on saying goodbye to depression. http://www.tracycrossley.com

Painting by Marc Chagall. 

The Walking Wounded Part 1

This is the first in a series of posts, because this category is vast. I appreciate anyone sending me his or her experiences too, which I may use in future posts.

The “walking wounded” is not a literal interpretation; its a metaphor, because the wounds are not necessarily visible to the naked eye upon meeting this individual.

I have met many lugging the pain of the past, like an anchor chained to their chest. It seems the older one gets the more exposed we are to holding sacred the wounds like a sheet of armor. Dreams unfulfilled, relationships that have unraveled and careers that burned out; the crucial time is between 40-60, give or take a few years.

Personally and professionally I know this story, many are my clients, friends and people I have been with in an intimate relationship. They can’t figure out why they feel stuck and depressed. Or like a victim.

YOU CANNOT THINK YOUR LIFE, YOU MUST ACT…if you want fulfillment and happiness.

In this post I want to talk about one group of walking wounded.

The wounded divorcee.

It is more appropriate to say “sitting wounded” as they don’t move forward, they remain looking backwards not standing in the present moment.

Some have been cheated on or cheated; or one of them fell out of love, maybe they just didn’t get along at all, or an addiction was present, or abuse.

These people are still wondering years later what went wrong.

It is a question that no matter how much the mind analyzes it will never find satisfaction with an answer.

Especially, if before deciding to leave a marriage behind, an individual was not completely clear and resolved that no hope existed. Whether they were in control of the decision or not, often they wanted to bury the pain without being fully emotionally present to the circumstances, which lead to the demise.  Clarity and resolution do not have to come between both people, but it is where we should aim to be when we call it quits…. or we run the risk of bringing the past forth.

Some barely move on physically; they may move to the guesthouse, a relative or a friend’s couch, indefinitely. And in other cases they move far away, hurriedly get re-married or even choose a residence that is meant to upset their estranged partner. Some enter in relationships in which they are not emotionally engaged or purposely find partners who promise more misery and drama. It is a way of living in denial. Trying to alleviate the reality and diminish pain by avoiding what they feel…. it gets buried and like a savings account, you keep accruing interest, but when you go to withdraw, it is not a pleasant experience. It’s more like Halloween and I don’t mean the “treat” part. 

The trick is some of these non-dealers may appear the opposite upon introduction. They may seem in touch with themselves, tell you their past and the handle they have on their baggage. They talk a great game, but it is their actions and reactions, which show the truth. If you want the truth in any situation watch what someone does.

Inappropriate reactions, action not taken or action that is out of character confuses other people.

Compartmentalizing, drinking, gambling, sex addictions, lying and other denial tools are huge….

Fear runs them; living in the past everyday kills any opportunity for functional, healthy, happy relationships.

We all do it when we anticipate what someone will say or do and we thereby create our own reality. If we actually pay attention to how we feel, before we speak or act, we may find it has nothing to do with the present moment. We may find a new opportunity to not recreate the past in the present, because we had assumed we knew what would happen. It will only “happen” how you believe it should, IF YOU CREATE IT.

People who are stuck in the past will NOT be in conversation with you presently, they are VIEWING, HEARING and FEELING their former relationship.

Some individuals will say “yes” to everything, make promises and then fall off the face of the planet. It is a form of passive aggressiveness. It’s a form of repressed anger. People who cope by using compartmentalizing and numbness usually do not include you in their life nor are they really in your life either. They may hear your needs as a demand and you feel like a book on a shelf, pulled out when they want to read a chapter. They can’t reconcile themselves to moving on because the PAST is what they know in their head, which is less scary then the risk of the unknown in opening one’s heart.

There is another group, those who have been cheated on and never recovered emotionally.

They may say they have it all figured out and have become a Lothario and intellectualize the opposite sex, so they feel superior and never run the risk of emotional attachment, which can lead to being hurt. Or they go the other extreme and have nothing to do with dating or mating. Some do end up in relationships. The shared notion with those who have been cheated on and are stuck is they don’t trust. Mainly, they don’t trust themselves to be able to handle any threat of being hurt or betrayed and they don’t trust others. This is a group who is deeply wounded. You may feel trivialized, hurt, and like this person does not get you at all, even though five minutes before they were pledging their undying love. They may be so convincing in what they say that you start believing you are crazy, because this person accuses you of things that are about as real as a purple elephant.

What does it all mean?

Are these people stuck forever in a recurring nightmare of their own making?

Nope, not at all, it is a choice.

The basis for my work is how we come to believe false things about ourselves and recreate it every step of the way in our lives. The seed for all dysfunction is old. Patterns of behavior are present when we are young, but our young age gives us some protection. We still believe much is possible, disappointments haven’t weighed us down and we still take real action. With people who get stuck, some insecurities may have fallen away with age, but other ones LOOM large. Why? It is a culmination of our experiences. We make our experiences into stories we tell about ourselves; it’s all the things that happened to us, rather than through us.

Experiences are outside of us, so how do we let that LIMIT and define “who we are and what is possible?” It’s because we see a repeat of the same things happening over and over, feeling we have no control and that we are victimized by life.

Not true.

We are the creators of our lives. WE CREATE BY OUR ACTIONS, REACTIONS and CHOICES. We have to develop enough self-awareness to catch the false belief in our mind before we take action to support it—that is how patterns are broken. Sometimes when I don’t know how to change something, I do what is extraordinarily uncomfortable and the opposite of my usual thought process, which culminates in the choice I make and action I take!

It actually gives us more control to see our lives in this way.

I am ending this post here, I will continue with another part in the near future. Meanwhile, please feel free to share with me Tracy@13degreez.com