It is so much easier to blame others for all our failings and missed opportunities in life. But, in fact, no one else is responsible for how you feel except you. No one can make you feel a certain way and equally you are not responsible for making someone else feel a certain emotion. Both require permission. Every single thought that we have, every action we take, everything that we feel comes from within. If we choose to hold a grudge against someone that hurt us, first, it creates anger and resentment within ourselves, secondly, it absolves us of personal responsibility and accountability – a lack of maturity born of insecurity and weakness.
Unfortunately for us, easier is not better and rarely makes us happier. In my younger days I did my fair share of blaming not realising that it was the blaming that was restricting my progress in life. There are no solutions to be found when we are pointing our fingers towards the world out there as we remain the victim. As victims we are caught in the net of self pity, there is no solution for self pity only a life time spent nursing our grudges and grievances.
Our feelings and emotions hold powerful sway over our lives, if we are too frightened to explore them they will take us hostage as they dictate the outcome of our lives. The question is why are we so terrified of our feelings, after all they are just feelings, they are in a constant motion of ebb and flow. It seems that a particular driving force can be our fear of our own vulnerability, that we need others and if we admit that we need others we put ourselves at risk of rejection or that our needs might not be met. The problem is that eventually those suppressed emotional needs will haunt you and then they will catch up with you and present themselves in a far more dramatic way.
What few of us realise is how our life experiences shape us, especially when we are children, they form the foundation of who we are. Who knows what experiences lead people to believe that they are super beings, super humans who can carry the world on their shoulders, a common trait among those who tend to believe that who they are as they are is not quite good enough. As a result we develop strategies to fill the void, usually these strategies are unhelpful. The result is that our physical and mental health is compromised and we learn to live with this compromised version of ourselves oblivious to the fact that our best self has been left behind.
The solution is to take a deep dive inside and identify what it is that we need, what is missing, and then find a healthy way to get it.
It is our experiences that shape us, as adults we have a responsibility to ourselves and to the greater good of all to recognise the patterns of behaviours that are contributing to making us unhappy or limiting our ability to express our full potential.
What if we tried something else? Imagine how much stronger you would feel if you chose to take responsibility and identify what it is you really need, and then find a way to get it in a new or different way.
Our mental health and wellbeing and the impact it has on our personal life and professional performance depends directly on addressing our unmet emotional needs. It takes courage to explore these suppressed parts of ourselves, it requires a willingness to put in the effort and understand the value of investing in yourself. Of course this will be challenging if you are secretly of the belief that you are not worth much. We must then consider that the price we will pay for not understanding our worth is going to be high, it may even cost you your life. Doubtless, the benefits and rewards reaped for making the effort to invest in your most valuable treasure, yourself, are immeasurable.