Sunday, May 13, 2012

Learning to Live is Different than Waiting to Die

Newport Beach, California 2010
Learning to create my life from the inside out is THE most "em"powering lesson I learned.

In a nutshell:

First....I  AM powerless over things that exist outside of my physical body - people, places and things or circumstances that exist outside of my personal physical self and environment.

This includes other people....

The things they...

Think, do and say.
The way others express their own needs in the things they do and say - is outside of my control or influence.

 A helpful hint I found about putting this in perspective....

Keeping in mind that when someone begins a sentence with "You...." what they are saying is "I am feeling angry or afraid that this is outside of my control and I need to try to shape or influence what you are doing or saying to make myself feel safe". 

Huge life lesson for me and one I am still learning day by day.

The key was to learn to see this in myself that I could have compassion for those who couldn't see it at all.

Secone....I am NOT powerless over what I do think feel or say or...the story I tell myself about the things that are outside of my control. 
Which sort of flies in the face of those who for many years told me that I was actually powerless over my thoughts, feelings, moods, physical health, my body....

That something was "wrong" with me....not the abuse, neglect and emotional/psychological brainwashing that left me believing they were right. 

Yet - here I am longer depressed, chronically dissociating, feeling fragmented, alone or isolated. 

Learning to listen to my inner world that I might create the outer world, life and circumstances that allows me to live and experience my "best life"...even when things aren't so good. 

The key here?

Learning to recognize that where others told me I was powerless, disordered and that my distress was chronic long lasting and unchangeable...

These individuals were often also profiting from my dependence on them in one way or another either directly or indirectly.

A key component in any abusive relationship is when someone says...

Something is wrong with you and you can't do this without me. 

That goes for family, friends and health care providers.

We always have a choice and any "provider" or person that encourages dependence?

Well...I lived in that place for nearly 20 years while under the influence of chemicals that inhibited my ability to think clearly or function in any capacity so ....ummm...I sort of have some prejudice about working with therapists and other "mental health" providers - but...this post about finding helpful help - might be helpful: How to tell an average therapist from a great therapist and see my post I am not a can of soup here to read about how I began to learn the language of life around re-defining who I chose to "self". 

The life lesson? 
  • I AM powerless over circumstances and situations that exist outside of my personal physical, emotional, environmental space
Which also means...

  • I am NOT powerless over the environment I choose to create and where my physical, emotional and psychological "self" resides and....

The next life lesson?

Its up to me to create a place of safety for myself.

As a child - I had not choice, no resources, no escape.

As an adult...


If I'm still in unsafe environments where I'm still being put down, shut up, dismissed or abused in any way...

Then its up to me to learn to use the resources available to find my way to safety and understand that while that may have been my normal...

It is not healthy and I can learn to live beyond that place where I felt as though it was my responsibility to change who I was and tolerate being abused and otherwise mistreated in order to not be abandoned. 

Truth is....

While I still felt "childlike" and wished, hoped and dreamed for my "knight in shining armor"...

What I found...

Is that no one can rescue an adult. 


That adults cannot be abandoned. 

We make choices to stay or to go. 

Abandonment "issues" are issues to be resolved and when they aren't - they are often recreated. 

Bottom line for me became understanding that the learned helplessness and fear of abandonment of the past fueled that sense of hopelessness as an adult that left me unable to see that I was truly the creator of my today and my tomorrow. 

I felt helpless to shape my "self" let alone my world or life experiences. 

It was in learning the language of life....

That I began to become the creator life:) 

You may have been powerless - but are no longer. 

The key is to learn to identify that feeling powerless...

Is much different than being powerless.

Learning to live is different than waiting to die - which is where I was until I discovered that I held the power to become the creator of my "self" and my life. 

Language...can give life or create death. 

I lived the life of what I call the "living dead" for a very long time.


I choose life.

Won't you join me? 

It is possible to learn to claim our power, to become the creator of our own "best life".

What does your best life look like? 

If the past never happened...and all the ducks were in a row....

What would your life look like at the end of it? 

That is where we begin...

With the end in mind.

This is how we begin to let go of the past...

By learning how to create our future.

Uh huh!

Not rocket science for sure....

Not always easy either.

But damned sure worth it. your life:) 

Always amazed at the light that surrounds you....


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1 comment:

Kelly Menzies said...

Hi Susan

I love your article. The message that there is something "wrong" with you which is what happens when we label someone is one of my biggest frustrations.

How does this heal anyone? It creates dependency and limits peoples recovery.

We are all creators of our own lives and we have the power to change how WE respond to situations.

I agree wholeheartedly!