From the moment we are born, we are processing information. Thoughts and emotions get reinterpreted through external stimuli. The data processed become internalized and then used at later times in our lives. As we go through life, we tend to decide how we feel about ourselves and our lives on the interpretations and treatment of others toward us. If we form agreements with the observations of others concerning how they perceive us to be, we generally go through life pretending to be someone we are not, just to be accepted and liked — simultaneously relinquishing our power and authenticity. As you relinquish your energy, so is your ability to love yourself unconditionally. Your love and value are immense and was and still is a birthright, gifted to you, never to be taken.
As time passes, unfortunately, the love you hold you begin to question. You doubt your value due to mounts of criticism given to you throughout your life up until now. This doubt causes division within your heart. Nonetheless, the relationships we hold with ourselves and others are usually recreations from childhood. We attract relationships that mimic the feelings we internalized growing up from the relationships we had with our parents, siblings, and so forth. If you had a mother or father who spoke to you condescendingly, chances are your adult relationships bring about the same.
How we have been treated throughout our life, particularly by adults, has helped form the opinions we carry about ourselves. We often grow up feeling powerless and subservient, which causes people to relinquish their control to another person, circumstance, or situation. Overly reprimanded and criticized, children often turn into adults who try hard not to “disappoint” or come across as a hard shell to cover up who they are underneath the mask. Just as the criticized child, however, they fall short.
As adults, we seek to add value and happiness to our lives through circumstances, people, and idealistic situations. Little do we know, we are merely mimicking the adult (superior) child (inferior) relationship, keeping the cycle of dysfunction going. Not even realizing this type of thought process feeds the cycle of entrapment and adds to the dysfunction we see in the world today.
Your job isn’t to work hard to make someone else feel great about you. Your job is to make you feel great about yourself. The people who value your greatness will be drawn to you automatically. Attracting the right people becomes effortless once you remember your worth.
Caregivers and parents have duties to keep children (sometimes adults) safe and out of harm’s reach. But, when we yell at, punish, and belittle who we care for regularly, it causes harmful energies that fester inside them, often taking lifetimes to heal.
Control is the doorway to ruin, and the allowance is of love. Protection and correction are a lot different than control, criticism, and manipulation when it comes to love and encouragement of another. Parents that gave love only to take it away when their children misbehaved or acted unfavorably have helped their children develop wounds that lead to self-esteem issues in adulthood.
True love isn’t behavior-based; it is gifted to anyone who wishes to know it.
The point I am making is, we grow up in a world where the belief is your work a sure way to be loved and a direct link to your value, but this couldn’t be any further from the truth. People learn to believe specific people are better than others, which upkeeps the superior and inferior complex going — consequently causing further pain in people.
I’ll give an example, the janitor treated with less respect than the CEO feels unworthy because nobody looks at him or her or bothers to say hello. The same janitor looks on as people smile and great the CEO. Being a witness to this without knowing your worth will cause you to believe your title is what guarantees your value. It does not. This thought process turned learned behavior enables us to grow up, dislike ourselves, kiss ass, and become slaves to anyone we feel can empower us. Nobody can crown you, but you — bottom line.
What we believe about ourselves and other people has a direct effect on our lives. Our beliefs about ourselves are projected outward and also affects how others see us — again, we learn how to treat ourselves according to the way our caregivers treated us. We love ourselves and encourage ourselves if we learned the skills to do so
The reality a lot of people are faced with is misunderstood criticism. Hurt people criticize and condemn themselves because this is what they have learned to do early on. If you don’t behave accordingly, you punish yourself with judgment and condemnation. The once joyous and loving baby, turn child, then the adult onlooker of life, the naysayer.
People are internalizing what they feel is good or bad behavior and judging according to their flawed misconceptions. We then criticize and condemn ourselves and others according to how we see fit. We call people names, mistreat them, become lazy and unfulfilled. Our reactivity to negativity called upon like clockwork — our focus and attention land all things we claim not to want.
Once the division takes place within the heart, bad habits, like overeating, placing blame, smoking, drinking, overworking ourselves, and so on, seem to be the focus. Once we get in the habit of judging or criticizing, we form voids within ourselves that nothing or no one seems to be able to fill. They can’t because the division is within you. You have to make your heart whole again.
Adults often internalize their emotions because, as children, they learned to lean on their caregivers to soothe their pain. Rarely does a caregiver help a child understand the why behind the pain. Not because they don’t want to but because they didn’t know where the pain comes from either. Most people learn how to soothe pain to cover it up. Few people know how to get to the root of the pain to demolish it. Therefore, the brain learns how to internalize, but then inward feelings become projected by reactivity. What goes in must come out; this rule not only applies to digestion but emotions as well. Feelings of inadequacy through your actions are seen loudly by others. The behavior tends to look like this: overextending to family and friends, only to complain and become bitter about it later. Over analyzing situations, you cannot control. Seek relationships and new business ventures that never come to fruition. The cycle of finding a way to feel better, no matter the cost, seems endless
You are not to blame. Criticized children become adults that don’t usually feel sufficient or secure. You don’t have to work for acceptance and love. It’s already yours. You must know this first to bring forth change you crave.
If you find yourself doubting your abilities, notice the doubt as to the lie it is. Remind yourself that doubt came from criticism, and you are no longer the misled child. You literally can do anything you put your heart and mind to; Start noticing the love in you and rebuild your life on love — not criticism and doubt.
© 2019 Dione Howard