Hi internet humans who I do not yet know, hell I don’t even know if anyone sees what I write. But that doesn’t matter, what matters is I am saving myself and I do not need anyone’s permission. What do I mean by “permission”? Well, I have found this year that I had myself in a cage and for some stupid reason my thinking was I needed permission from someone or something more powerful than myself to give me permission to leave my full time job and start living my best life. Who was this permission going to come from? I have no idea, and realizing that gave me the freedom to see my cage, open the door, and get the fuck out of there.
Recognize your cage- For me my cage was working 50 hours a week, 40 of that week at a job where none of the profits went to me. I was busy killing myself to make money for someone else. The thought that I had to stay there for the benefits kept me locked up and miserable. Then my cage started to change. An event happened that I cannot go into but it was enough to wake me up and see that I was in a tight dirty cage. My cage became too constrictive and intolerable, that was what finally had to happen for me to see the cage and work for change.
Put your own oxygen mask on first- One of the reasons I was stuck in a rut, working too much and getting burnt out is because I was putting everyone before myself. Not wanting to put more financial burden on my spouse was a big part. The silly thing is all he wanted was for me to be happy, and he would happily get benefits from his work and happily do anything for me, all I had to do was ask and I finally did. Another part of this was not wanting to disappoint or inconvenience the coworkers and clients that I care so deeply about. That was heart wrenching to decide to leave, but I had to put my oxygen mask on first, and that meant leaving to pursue my dreams of freedom.
No one can save you, but you- Mind blowing information here, we are in charge of saving ourselves. Who knew! After seeing all those princesses get rescued by some prince my whole life left me convinced that I had to wait to be saved by someone else. Not true! Turns out, other people can support us, and help us along our path, but it is up to us to want to change and then figure out how to do it. That is where the support comes in, people can support us and guide us but they cannot save us. We have to save ourselves, we have to decide we want something different and then do it. No one is coming to rescue us, we have to rescue ourselves. This will look different for everyone. For me it was leaving a job that was causing chest pain and eye twitches, I wasn’t sleeping and I was using food and alcohol to numb. Support for me looked like asking my partner for support to help me grow my private practice. Asking for support by providing our family with a stable income and health insurance. And finally asking for support by him believing I can succeed. What do you need to rescue you from?
Ask for help and support- We are not an island. Though many of us are trying to live our lives as if we are. I have heard too many times people who are sick and need help to heal themselves say “I have to do this alone” or “I can do this on my own” or “I don’t need anyone.” While like I said before we have to save ourselves, this does not mean we do it alone. We are herd animals, even us introverts need deep and meaningful connections. We cannot heal alone, we need a guide, a mentor, at least one deep friendship, we need a cheerleader who yells we can do this louder than our self doubt yells that we cannot!
Embrace your whole self fully (this will be a lifelong task)- We all as people have many parts of self, we have wounded parts, we have protector parts, we have a light and a dark side, we have energies that are soft and nurturing, and energies that are strong protectors. We have parts of ourselves that we are so afraid of that we do everything we can to lock them away and never let them out. I am going to be really vulnerable here so that is something… My part that I lock away and push away if the part of me that is self preservation. Yeah that sounds weird but that is the part of me I have locked away. I will give the people I care about everything, with no boundaries, just give and give my love and energy until I am completely empty. There is a voice in my brain that says “hey you don’t owe them that” or “hey they need to carry that on their own, it is not your emotional garbage to hold for them.” I say to that voice Fuck Off! I will give and do what I want until it kills me because that is being a good mother, wife, friend, employee, therapist. However, if I am empty can I really give to everyone the way that I want to? No, none of us can give from an empty well. So to my self preservation I say, sorry and I need you. We need to listen to the parts of ourselves that we try to push down the most. They are scary, but they are there for a reason. We need to know that reason. How would exploring your parts that you try to keep hidden help you?