Have you ever been in a situation where you were asked to do something, and deep down you were screaming “No” but the first words that slipped our your mouth was your usual “Yes”. One of the most important elements of any relationship is TRUST and we lose trust with ourselves every time we:
- said YES when we wanted to say NO,
- said NO when we wanted to say YES,
- tell ourselves we will do something and find an excuse not to,
- don’t listen to what our gut or heart is telling us to do,
- listen to others instead of listening to ourselves,
- put our needs last instead of listening to our bodies
This is just naming a few of the ways we betray ourselves and our own wellbeing every day. Then with time we stop trusting ourselves, we stop trusting our judgements and we doubt every little decision we need to make. We give away our power, become disconnected from ourselves and start feeling like we are just going through the motions.
So why are we doing this to ourselves
Understanding exactly why we do this will be individual to each person depending on what we have experienced. However, most people pleasing behaviors are linked to childhood traumas or coping mechanisms that we have developed from a young age in order to survive. One of the best definitions I have heard on trauma is from Gabor Mate who says “Trauma is not the bad things that happen to you, but what happens inside of you as a result of what happens to you”. Something we may consider small, like a parent not modelling boundaries, can even be considered as a trauma. We won’t have learnt how to have healthy boundaries which often means we over compensate as adults leading to us feeling like we are being taken for granted, resentful and angry.
These behaviors and beliefs served a purpose as a child as one of our biggest needs is to belong and have attachment with our caregivers. A child will make sure that they act in a way that ensures they are looked after and not rejected, but this is often at the detriment to our own authenticity / being ourselves. These behaviors are usually holding us back and making us feel disconnected in our adult life, so becoming aware of why we show up in certain ways is part of the process of taking back our power.
5 Actions You Can Take to Take Back Your Power
Here are 5 actions you can start taking now in order to stop betraying yourself and start to take back your power:
- Become aware of what you keep telling yourself you will do and either do it or let it go – as mentioned before, we often betray ourselves by telling ourselves we will do something and finding an excuse not to. Becoming aware of these promises we keep breaking allows us to discern whether it is really important to us or whether it is time to let it go. If it is important to you, then look deeper and make small promises to yourself that you can keep in order to build up trust again. When looking deeper, there can be various reasons why we may not be doing something, like our expectations of ourselves are unrealistic so we are biting off more than we can chew. Or, this could be down to self-sabotage or procrastination if we are stepping outside of our comfort zone;
- Start listening to and following your intuition – we live in a world where we have been cut off from our intuition and programmed to follow a prescribed set of rules. This leads us to doubt ourselves and not listen to the gut feelings we have. Often after the fact we will think that we knew that we shouldn’t have done something, as our intuition was telling us but we weren’t listening to it. Start to hear what your inner voice is telling you, drown out the noise of too many different opinions and learn what works for you personally;
- Acknowledge, honor and praise yourself – this is something we all struggle with, especially as women, as we have often been taught not to be full of ourselves and to be agreeable. Often, we have inner critic (who I like to call our dramatic friend), that is beating us up and making us think we should do more, be more, achieve more. Without stopping to acknowledge and honor how far you have already come, and everything you are already doing, it will always feel like it is not enough. So, if praising yourself feels too much for now, then at acknowledge yourself for now;
- Reframe your beliefs and rebuild your self-worth – we often act in certain ways, or allow people to treat us in certain ways because we don’t believe we deserve better. We don’t believe we are enough. We fear that people will leave us, abandon and / or reject us if we don’t keep showing up in the ways that they now expect. We continue to betray ourselves as it feels like the safer option. However, when we look at it, the reason we feel lost, stuck and empty is because we are betraying ourselves;
- Understand why you aren’t setting boundaries and start putting them in place – start making your “yes” mean something again. I started to have a rule recently that I will only do something if it feels like a hell yes. We also don’t realise by not having sufficient boundaries, and always stepping in for people we are often disempowering them and not giving them the room to really grow. So having boundaries are not only for you, but also for the people in your life to feel safe. We also need to look at the boundaries we have with ourselves, often it is us that keeps overstepping our own boundaries instead of others.
If you would like find out what is holding you back from setting boundaries, and discover the steps to take in order to effectively create and express them then join me on 21st September 2021 at 12.00pm – 13.15pm GMT for an interactive, online masterclass covering How to Create and Express Your Boundaries to Take Back Your Power.
You can find out more and book your spot by following this link – https://wildflowertransformationcoaching.com/how-to-create-and-express-your-boundaries-to-take-back-your-power/
If you have any questions on what I have covered in this blog, feel free to comment or reach out.