Depending on how you were raised you may struggle with saying no to people or doing what you really want to in life.
When I begin to engage in things that my heart is not truly into, I find my energy goes down, my anxiety goes up, and I often feel like I am denying who I really am.
I think continually committing to what you don’t really want to do can cause anxiety and depression. I am not an expert nor a doctor but I am strictly speaking from my own experiences and therapy.
When we don’t acknowledge what we really want to do and what we really believe, we begin to deny ourself. To deny yourself creates all sorts of problems. It can cause identity crisis, reality crisis, and overall can make you feel like you don’t fit in nor have a purpose in life.
If we find that we don’t seem to have purpose in life, then most likely we have compromised overtime the things we truly wish to do as well as our beliefs.
As a child we are raised with rules and taught some good things about morals and society, if we are lucky. As we get older and start to experience the rest of the world, most of us run into things that challenge what we were taught.
What once worked as a child, no longer works as an adult.
This is where people get stuck. The child like rules, beliefs, and boundaries that were put in place to protect us no longer fit into the adult world. The things we learned as children were good but are not made to be a one size fit all as we grow up. We are to learn to become adults, our own selves, to leave our mothers and fathers, and go out and explore the wilderness.
But so few ever do.
Instead most of us revert back to the doctrines that are so hardwired into us. They keep us safe, they keep us in comfort but often they deny who we are trying to be as adults and keep us from finding our true identity.
I struggle with shame. I like to please people.
When I get asked to do something I immediately begin to try and figure out how to do it. How can I help this person, how can I say yes, how can I make them think I am great so they will love me back. This is an old dialogue that no longer fits in my life. It no longer works. It doesn’t focus on me and who I am.
Most of us agree to do things and believe in things strictly out of shame and guilt. We deny ourselves the things we truly desire and want because we don’t want to make others view us as different or lose the so called love from others.
But it’s not really love if people will not accept you for who you are.
When I notice myself getting anxious about things it’s almost always connected with being in situations that I don’t want to be in. When I begin to feel numb or exhausted or empty it’s normally because I have overcommitted to things that are not that important to me, but are easier to do then have the hard conversation with the person that things have to change - that we are different people now, that we had a season and now that season is over.
Maybe you can relate?
Maybe you can think about things you find yourself doing that suck the life out of you. Maybe you can think of relationships that just leave you feeling dizzy. Maybe you can think of things you have done for years and years out of habit that at your core you wish you could just leave.
Maybe you can think about all those moments of anxiety and make a connection that you actually felt that way because you were denying yourself.
Maybe you have been denying questions and beliefs and emotions that have no name yet because you have stuffed them down so deep or been shamed to keep them to yourself.
You can change. You can begin to think for yourself. You can begin to say no and start to do things you want.
When I began to take charge of my life and do things I wanted to do, I slowly saw all my stresses, anxiety’s, and fears in life begin to vanish. All my big questions began to fade away because I had purpose again. I had direction and I began to get to know who I really was.
This may sound like being selfish, but everyone in my life can attest that as I have taken care of myself, it has allowed me to actually take care, love, and serve others even better. This isn’t unique to me. There are plenty of other people who preach this very idea.
In this life you are made to do what you want to do. When you begin to do what you want to do, you’re respecting your time, yourself and who you are.
When you begin to do what you want to do, you find yourself in situations that are life giving instead of life sucking.
When you begin to do what you want to do, you find that who you are, all the unique quirky things that make you, “you”, actually become even more desirable for others.
Now, I know some may read this and think that I am saying, “do whatever you want, yolo” but let’s be adults here. We know that with freedom there is always the opportunity for abuse. Doing what we want is good, but we also have to consider others and how it may impact them. In my experience, more often then not, if we verbalize our desires to others they are normally supportive. We often never speak our truth because we have projected onto others what we think they will think.
The good news is, we are all humans, and we all essentially have the same projections. At the end of the day I have found that people want people to be themselves.
We want people to be happy, joyful, and full because we desire that in ourselves.
This week I want you to take sometime and notice when you feel stressed or exhausted. Are you doing things that you don’t want to do? Are you denying yourself the things that make you, “you”. Have you neglected the things that you love? Are there relationships that are way past there prime that need to be let go? Are you still trying to force child like beliefs into your adult life?
Do something this week that you want to do, treat yourself.
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