Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Trusting Your Intuition

Your intuition is that part of you that knows where to go and what to do. I believe your intuition is connected to your true source, God, the divine intelligence of the universe. I believe the still small voice inside your head telling you to go this way or that way is your intuition. Unfortunately for many of us, our true voices are drowned out by negative voices such as the inner critic.

Still, you've got to find your inner light. You've got to learn to be true to your intuitive self. That is what is meant by being true to oneself. Being true to your intuitive truth.

Intuition is a catalyst to action. It goes with you everywhere you go, but sometimes many of us are not open to it. We don't trust it. We were taught to despise it, or to be skeptical of our own so-called "evil" impulses.

Your intuition is your inner guide. It's the knowing that you know that you know underneath your thoughts, feelings, actions. It's a gut feeling, a hunch, a premonition a prophecy. It tells you who is good for you, who is bad for you and it tells you who is toxic.

Your intuition tells you who to trust and who will betray you. Plain, clear, exacting. Your intuition is always ahead of the game giving you direction. ALWAYS. But, we don't always listen to what our guidance system is telling us. We want what we want so we ignore our inner voice until it's so faint, it's like it's smothered by a pillow.

Inside your heart, soul, body and mind exists your core true self connected to the wisdom, knowledge and creative power of God--the creator of all things. Infinite intelligence flows through your being night and day. You have a choice, a decision to make in each moment--and that is to stay true or to deny that which is true for me.

Following your intuition takes practice. If you've experienced any abuse or maladaption in childhood, you may need to connect to your intuition, your truth and become acquainted, perhaps for the first time.

The Messengers of Intuition Here is a list from the book, "The Gift of Fear" by Gavin De Beckel

Gut Feelings

Barriers to Hearing Your Inuition

Childhood abuse or trauma can cause you to lose touch with the voice in your heart, it can also cause you to mistrust your own inclinations.

Desire for approval, recognition, attention, appreciation (narcissistic needs) is stronger than your connection to your core truth.

You don't know the difference between intuition and other voices in your head (as from the Inner Critic).

Lack of confidence or faith in your own truth.

Inability to recognize and take action on intuitive leanings.

Building a relationship of trust between yourself and yourself. Value the impulses of your intuition. Guard your intuitive thoughts and take action to pursue the requests of your deepest heart of hearts. 

The key is taking action. You strengthen your connection to your intuition by heeding its yearnings. You can heed the yearnings of your heart in the following ways to get used to the idea:
  • Go for a walk without an agenda. Let your intuition lead the way for once. Go where it guides you to go.
  • Label your intuition. When you have an intuitive moment, try to catch yourself and label it as such.
  • Stand firm in your intuition. Back yourself up. If you feel the strong desire to eat oranges, then do whatever it takes to get that orange in your mouth right away. If you can't stop thinking about a friend, stop what you're doing and call that person.
  • Take action. Take action to back up your intuition. 
Intuition is a guidance mechanism of our psyche. It is connected to the very heart of God. It is the god-part of you which is connected to the collective consciousness. Inside of you is a well spring of wisdom, truth, love, well being and abundance.

This is the place of higher perspective from which your intuition dwells. It will always have the right answer for you. It will always steer you in the right direction. It has as its goal your eternal expansion. It is the voice of truth inside of you.

Your intuition is like an old fashioned gentleman. It will always let your wild side go first. It isn't boastful, grandiose or exploitative. It doesn't throw tantrums or express rage. Intuition is simply your wise, insightful sage that sits at the core of who you are. It cares deeply for your well being and it knows the truth that you may not be able to see.

Intuition incorporates unconscious clues into its leanings.

Deciphering the Intuitive You from other Parts of You

Each of us have various parts within our psyche including such figments as the wounded child, the adult or wise one, the critical one, the happy one, the sick one, the victim, the list is endless. The secret to determining which is your intuitive truth without becoming confused by this crowd in your mind is to

1. Listen to your heart.
2. Seek to know your intuition.
3. Invite your intuition to live with you in life and to help you.
4. Get to a clear, quite place. Change locations. Go outside. Go for a run or a walk.
5. Fight the tendency to use your cognitive defenses or cognitive biases.
6. Examine your justifications for not following your intuition in real time.
7. Live on a higher level of observation through mindfulness techniques.
8. Develop a meditation practice that will help you to be still and tuned into your inner truth.
9. Set a strong intention to know your intuition.
10. Take baby steps today following the leanings of your heart without asking why, JUST DO IT.

There is a difference between your intuition and a made-up idea. True intuition is subtle as hell. It doesn't knock you over, unless you're very accustomed to following it. It stands firm, resolute, strong, capable, available and ready to lead and guide you, if you will let it.

How to Trust your Intuition

Start practicing now. It will come in handy once a real need to heed your own still voice comes up.

Pitfalls to Following Your Intuition

Your intuition is leading you to your highest good, which may be vastly different than making you feel good this red hot minute.  You will need to gain self discipline to override your impulses and instead follow your own inner guidance. You must rise to take action on your own behalf, even when a larger part of you wants to ignore your truth for some other pursuit. The key is to bring your whole self--your ENTIRE SELF into submission of your own inner guidance of intuition and truth. Anything less is Self Betrayal.

Allow your intuition to override your impulses.

Your intuition is tapped into infinite intelligence.

Intuition is clarity. Take bold action to the tune of the clarity inside your heart.

Following your intuition is like playing a musical instrument--except, you're the violin!

It's like a dance where you let your true self take the lead. 

Like a therapist in your mind.

Your intuition is that part of you that is beneath the hurt, the pain, the wounds... It's the part of you that exists always, beyond time and space. Even beyond thought and feeling. Your intuition is the core of who you are, linked up with the source of all creation. 

Those of us raised to abandon and reject ourselves may not have a clue about following our intuition. Others may follow their intuition every day and not even realize what they're doing. Suffice it to say, the latter experience much happier, fulfilled and satisfying lives.  Those who are disconnected from their own true source within will experience pain, neurosis and any manner of mental illness, depression or other negative malady.  I repeat. Those who are out-of-touch or out-of-sync with their intuition (like I was) will experience pain insomuch as they do.

Heeding your intuition fully is the result of truly finding yourself. It is the only way to love yourself effectively.

Your intuition is your inner parent. Your inner wisdom. Inner guide. Can you imagine being out-of-touch? Can you imagine turning to addictions instead of heeding the still voice who is the proponent of your highest good?

Your intuition is always with you. It will always comfort, always support. It may correct, but will do so gently, lovingly and without judgment. This inner leaning is the you that loves you, protects you, warns you, fights for you, talks to you, guides you, reminds you,

Intuition consists of pure unconditional acceptance and love. It guides you for your good, not for promise of gain or fear of loss. It doesn't need to get anything. It doesn't need to impress anyone. It doesn't need to prove itself or win anyone over. Intuition doesn't stoop to the level of persecution games, but instead serves as your higher self with a universal perspective beyond all space, time, thoughts and emotion.

Following your intuition won't always bring the great emotional rush that lower level impulsive actions may bring... That's because intuition is centered and clear. It just is, it doesn't need the

It's not the part of you that needs a jolt of intensity just to feel. Your intuition is the part of you that knows what to do. The answers to everything you need are within your heart, though you distract yourself from these answers under the guise of looking for answers.

A big problem is questioning your intuition. This may occur if you were raised to abandon yourself. You may question if your perceptions are correct, or if you're off base. The key to knowing is in going higher to the level of your motive. Letting that high place penetrate the low, needy, desperate wounded child that wants what it wants and doesn't care if what it wants is nothing like it really wants. 

Your wounded child is the biggest blocker of your intuition.
  • That's not a good idea.
  • This person is exploitative.
  • Stay away from her.
  • Stop this relationship.
  • This friend is good.
  • He can't be what I need.

People who were abused as children have difficulty in their own hearts because they're disconnected from their core truth. They're disconnected from the heart of who they are. They're disconnected from their true self, their intuition, and tragically, from their true source.

There may be another drive or impulse for them to override their better judgment and take a huge risk with an abusive person... whereas the intuitive true self says, "He's not good for you."

But if you are not accustomed to heeding your true self, you may barely be able to discern it from all the other noise. If you haven't been taught the value of that true self, then you may just steam roll over it with your wounded child's impulsive pursuits.

If you're plugged into your intuitive center, your life will be so much better. This is the essence of inner bonding and intimacy with others.

Intuition will never lead you astray. If you're off-track, it's likely because you failed to listen and act according to your own inner wisdom.

Intuition doesn't need to pick up the phone and get someone's advice, but your false self might. Your false self might be looking for outside validation for bullying the true self and ruling your life as you go from one mistake to the other.

So long as you ignore your intuition, you will continue to lose pieces of yourself that you need to reach your destination: Your highest good.

You believe it? It must be true.

You want that? I will get it for you.

You don't like that? I will make it stop.

You think that? What I think means everything to me.

 You feel how? My feelings are my emotional guidance system.

Intuition is not the negative voice inside your head, or the inner critic telling you that you're no good, incompetent and decrepit... That would be the antithesis of intuition. Intuition is always true, always pure, always clear, always correct. It is not confusing, frustrating, badgering and nagging. It's still. It's quiet. It's soft and it whispers. It is trying to lead and guide you beneath the surface. It's your turn now to let it rule.

Weigh intuition against rational mind. Judith Orliff.

The key for those who are learning to love themselves is that you give space to the intuition, perhaps even for the first time. Space for your truth to be heard and respected--by you, your very own self.

Intuition is a feeling in the body, in the gut especially, about another person.

Sometimes the wrong decision is disguised as the easiest.
Our minds seek comfort. Our hearts seek truth.
“I believe in intuitions and inspirations… I sometimes ‘feel’ that I am right. I do not ‘know’ that I am.” ~ Albert Einstein

“We have five senses in which we glory and which we recognize and celebrate, senses that constitute the sensible world for us. But there are other senses — secret senses, sixth senses, if you will — equally vital, but unrecognized, and unlauded.” ~ Oliver Sacks

3. Look for the signs. Often we overlook subtle synchronicities which are there to guide us down the best path. I believe that such signs are actually our subconscious trying to communicate with our conscious self. We should pay attention to coincidences and make note of subtle symbols which might lead us to discover a more authentic life choice which is truly best for us.

“Your mind will answer most questions if you learn to relax and wait for the answer.” ~William S. Burroughs

“Intuition is seeing with the soul.” ~ Dean Koontz

Intuition is "knowing" something without being able to explain how you came to that conclusion rationally.[1] It's that mysterious "gut feeling" or "instinct" that often turns out to be right, in retrospect. When you've whittled down your options and are stuck at a crossroads, getting in touch with your intuition can help. Learning how to separate the wheat from the chaff, so to speak, is difficult but intuition can be developed, especially when following some of these ideas.

Intuition is basically how you quickly tap into your subconscious mind, which is where you "archive" all kinds of information that you don't remember on a conscious level.[2] Sometimes you pick up on things subconsciously without realizing it, such as body language. It'll register as a certain "feeling" that you can't articulate at that moment, but it could very well be valid.[3]

Ask yourself questions and listen to the first answer that pops into your mind. That isn't easy, because several thoughts will flood your mind at once. For instance, let's say you're looking at a menu. In figuring out what you want, pick out the first thing that stands out to you. Ignore the remainder of your thoughts, like for example: "But I didn't even look at the specials" or "But my friend is on a diet and I'll feel bad eating this in front of him" or "But my uncle said the mashed potatoes he had here were too mushy" etc. Don't dwell on it. Just pick something. It might be scary, because what if you make the wrong choice? Do not worry, you will be fine.  t

Voice of intuition is quiet, quick, transcendental, peace, void of these emotional ties, attachment and fears. Not intense resistance to

Patient, not urgent. Perspective of this most expansive, eternal view of yourself does not align with fear.

Ego will keep you separate to avoid annhiliation. You better do this now or something bad will happen. Judgment, bad, cynisism.

True self does not question worth. Sees world more horizontally. Other same as self.

Ego feeds off of both extremes. Better than/Less Than, self defeating shame or self defeating pride. Never in present moment.

Strengthen connection with the True Self.

Seek and ye shall find.

Only through stillness that it can come through.

You have to be soft to be able to receive.

Let go of the need for the illusion of separateness between you and others.

right, superior, function of ego

Ego feeds off of need.
True self focuses on desire

Friday, November 20, 2015

Mindfulness Practice for Healing

A huge part of my healing journey from self loathing to self love has been Mindfulness Practice. Without this technique and way of life, I could never be fully healed.

Mindfulness does so many things, one of which is that it gives you space. Space between the past and present, between stimulus and response, between your emotions and your reason, between thoughts and feelings, between inner critic and true self, between self and higher self, between self and God, between what you want to do and what is effective--and so much more. 

Without a mindfulness practice, which I work each and every day as often as possible, I could only be healed up to a point. With mindfulness practice, I am coming in complete control of how I feel, how I react and how I live my life. I cannot say enough good things about Mindfulness and Meditation Practice. I do it every single day.

Friday, October 2, 2015

Counterfeit Love

What is counterfeit love? This term captured me as I was reading quotes from one of my favorite psychology authors, John Bradshaw posted on this article. I know what counterfeit love is, I know it all too well.

There are two kinds of love, real love and false love--just like there is your true self and your false self. False love produces the false self and true love produces the true self in others. Those who are accustomed to being loved for who they really are, and validated as children are more able to function in their true and natural state in adulthood. Unfortunately, those who were loved wrongly--and for the wrong reasons--develop a false self that covers and hides the true self with toxic shame.

So what is the difference? I know I've written about it before... the difference is that false love is love that may look like love, but isn't really love at all. False love is about being loved for being what someone else wants, needs or expects you to be--not, however, for being who you really are. True love is being loved for who you really are, even when that means you are not pleasing and complying.

True Love - Loving another for who they are, even when they are disappointing or make mistakes. Loving that person in their reality, as they experience life without trying to mold them, manipulate them, shape them and form them into anything other than who they are. True love is about receiving acceptance, validation and compassion for another as they unfold in their own way without expecting them to meet your needs or serve as an extension of your will and desires. True love is love that gives space and grace to the other, offering room for mistakes and all manner of vulnerability. This is true love. True love feels good; freeing; within true love we can grow and become all that we were born to become on this planet.

False Love - False love is being told directly or indirectly that who you really are is unacceptable, shameful, bad or wrong. It's being conditioned to believe that you must please the love object in order to GET love. It is a sense that you don't know who you are, you don't know what's best for you. False love teaches that your own experiences and reality are questionable, and that you should disregard your own gut and follow the whims of the one who is in control. False love is about power and control, manipulation, greed. It's about making the person into what is needed by the parent or lover instead of allowing the person to simply be who they are created to be.

If you've grown up in an environment that is less-than-nurturing, then you may not have ever in your life experienced true love. In fact, you may be operating out of your FALSE SELF without any inkling of who you really are. This False Self is a self that is a people pleaser which is always trying to seek validation externally. The False Self is at the core of narcissism, and at the other end of the same plane--it is at the core of codependency. (Codependency & narcissism being polar opposites on the same vibrational level). The False Self is fake and portrays itself as perfect, however, in reality it holds the ultimate flaw. The false self can never be satisfied and is forever relegated to the prison of addiction: sex, gambling, alcohol, relationships, love, shopping, eating, electronics--name your poison.

The False Self is narcissism. It's the part of us all that our culture is rabidly cultivating with imagery and idealism that can never deliver on its promises. The False Self craves the perfect body, the perfect home, the perfect career, perfect family, cars, vacations. All of these things promise to fulfill, but leave the core of the person--the true self starving for truth...

The True Self is truth. It doesn't give a shit about the kind of car you drive. It doesn't care if you eat spaghetti and wear a size 7. The True Self doesn't parade itself because it's not searching for anything because it already knows it is loved. It is impossible to function as the true self unless you know the truth of who you are--which is love. True love exactly as you are without outward adornments. You are love and there is nothing you can do to add to that fact, or take it away. This is the true self.

So we must keep the right perspective as we go about our lives and label and identify false premises from which we are living our lives. Any lies we believe will produce more of the false self... the feeling of toxic shame that we are inherently flawed, not good enough, wrong, bad. If we don't keep ourselves in check, we will feel ashamed and guilty for being who we are, and continue to try to cover up our shame by more purchases, more addictions or worse--suicide.

We must remind ourselves who we really are, every moment of the day. We must combat the voices that tell us we're not good enough. We must reparent ourselves and provide ourselves with true love and empathy for the inner child within that has been squashed and forgotten beneath layers and layers of falsity--of someone else's opinion of who we should be. We must curb our greed for material items which lie to us and promise the world but fail to deliver. We must stop making the mistake of believing that anything outside ourselves can add to or take away from our precious existence.

There is no other way.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Overcoming Victim Mentality

Victim Mentality is self empathy that needs to be relinquished. A story that needs to be released. It can be addicting. It can feel good. That self empathy. Self pity. Yes, you deserve your own compassion, but if you allow yourself to stay stuck in it, victim mentality will swallow you whole.

Self empathy without self soothing keeps you in victim mentality state. You have to soothe yourself out of the state and not baby yourself to stay there no matter how good it feels. (Paradox, I know) There's a time for everything. There's a time feel and hurt--this may take years--but there's also a time to let go of that pain and that hurt. There is a time to release the old stories and stop identifying with yourself as incapable, unable, unloved, unappreciated, un-whatever. Take time to release the past and the identity that goes with it. Take time to embrace your truth and readjust your thoughts according to who you really are.

You will be wrapped in victim mentality like a straight-jacket unless you go deep and release it. Use meditation techniques to get into a state of deep relaxation. Connect with your Higher Self. Release the story. Give it up. Let it go. Let peace, love, well-being, joy, harmony and clarity take its place. Let go of loving the role of the victim. Stop allowing yourself to feel the twisted pleasure of always being the underdog. Be honest with yourself. Tell yourself the truth. Only when you acknowledge your state can you let it go and move beyond it. Your task is to overcome the helplessness. You are a powerful co-creator and you have the power to overcome any obstacle. You lack nothing that you need. Loving yourself means not allowing yourself to remain helpless; grabbing hold of the power that is yours to own.

The reason this is so important is because your external life is a manifestation of your internal reality. If you identify yourself as a victim, then all you will manifest outwardly is the results of the victim. Going there in your heart will bring it to pass in your every day. You are a powerful being. What you feel inside becomes your reality. This is why you cannot afford to sit around and feel the pain of being a victim. The cost is too high. It feels good to feel sorry for ourselves, and it is necessary to recognize where we've been wronged, but it is imperative that our adult selves swoop into the scene and soothe the helpless child within. It's crucial that our adult selves catch our inner child in victim mode--and that our adult selves saves the child within--dries the tears and reminds our inner child that we are indeed competent, capable, able and powerful today as never before. You must keep yourself up inside, hold yourself higher if you wish to pull out--transcend your old associations with helplessness and pain. Stop allowing yourself to go there because wherever you're going inside yourself is what you are manifesting in your reality.  Stop allowing yourself to go there by soothing and resolving your own pain. This is saving yourself.

heart emoticon Jenna Ryan ‪#‎SelfLoveU‬

Victim Mentality is a set of conditioned thought processes that keep you stuck and tied to a helpless identity. When you have victim mentality you keep yourself there by the stories you tell yourself about who you are, how the world works and what others are about. We can overcome obstacles of life with great ease, but victim mentality is the very limits we place upon ourselves that chains us to our past. Getting out of victim mentality is necessary if we wish to move beyond our past and realize the power we hold to transform.

  1. Victim Mentality is held in place by negative core beliefs or schemas (groups of negative core beliefs) about ourselves, others and the universe.
  2. Victim Mentality is trust in the negative outcomes of life.

  3. Victim Mentality is Learned Helplessness, which is to say, we give up because we think things will end badly no matter what. We give up before we start.
  4. Victim Mentality is a host of stories we tell ourselves about who we are, who others are and what the universe is all about.
  5. Victim Mentality is the identity we learned in childhood when our needs were not met, we gave up in a way and made decisions about life to our detriment.
  6. Victim Mentality requires conscious effort to eradicate. It will not go away on its own.
  7. Victim Mentality is easier to see in others than it is to see in our own selves.
  8. An example of Victim Mentality is this, "No matter what I do, nothing I do will bring the results that I want." or "Life is difficult and people are always against me."
  9. Victim Mentality is a common pattern seen in adult child abuse and trauma survivors.
  10. Victim Mentality is common among those who threaten and/or commit suicide.
  11. Victim Mentality is replete with cognitive defenses and distortions such as wishful thinking, black or white thinking, all or nothing thinking, etc...
  12. Victim Mentality is the process of repetition compulsion of childhood relationships in adulthood.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Abuse By Proxy

Did you know you can be abused by someone emotionally and psychologically without them doing it to you directly? Yes. It can happen. It has happened to me. In fact, it has happened to me to the extent that I am very aware of it now. Today, with all of the healing I've gone through, I can plainly see when I'm being abused by proxy. Before my awakening and healing, I was regularly abused by 3rd parties for an original perpetrator without even realizing it. This hurt me greatly because I couldn't see (or was in denial of seeing) who was actually holding the knife. In fact, I thought it was my fault. Quite confusing.

If you were raised in a dysfunctional home, you don't know which end is up. You don't know how to trust yourself and you trust people who are harmful to you. Since you were never taught to trust yourself, you have to go outside for guidance, protection, encouragement and support. When you go outside yourself (because you don't know who you are) to get support, you are wide open to being "supported" by perpetrators who mean you no good.

People who are psychologically disordered live live like a game; they are in a battle for power and control. These people get a rush out of taking the power away from others. If you are a weak, needy person who was never taught that you have power, or that you have a right to have power, then you are easy prey for predators who will take everything you have and leave you thinking it's all your fault. These predators will abuse you in many ways. One way these folks take you down is through ABUSE BY PROXY.

Abuse By Proxy, technically is when a person uses or manipulates other people to abuse you. When you are abused by a third party, the original predator keeps his or her hands clean. This type of abuse is the worst! You may turn to the very person who is killing you. It's crucial that you understand who it is that is causing you to stay in abusive situations. It's crucial that you look beyond the surface and see that some people are merely following the directives of a covertly manipulative person who wants to take you down, keep you confused--and take away your power.

Abuse By Proxy occurs whenever the following types of scenes occur in your life:
  • You are being abused by a 3rd party, and your confidante encourages you to stay in the relationship.
  • You're being abused by a 3rd party, and your confidante says things to cause you to feel responsible, guilty, afraid of leaving or ashamed for getting out. 
  • You are abused by a 3rd party, and this abuse is occurring at the bequest of the predator or narcissist in your life.  
  • You are slandered by a group because of their loyalty to a predator who slanders you and they believe the lies.
The key to overcoming this type of abuse is realizing that you are worthy of protection. You are worthy of protection. You are worthy of protection. If you are abused, hurt, treated poorly, disrespected, you deserve to get the hell out of the relationship. This is YOUR RIGHT. You owe it to yourself to get out. If there is anyone who tells you to stay, forgive and forget, and /or says things to make you 2nd guess yourself, you know--this person is abusing you by proxy. This person is allowing you--encouraging you to stay in situations that are damaging your soul and leading you AWAY from your highest good.

If you are being slandered by a group of people or treated like crap from narcissist fawns, then just know who the original culprit is. You can't win with a narcissist. You might as well cut your losses and move on; believe me, you've really lost nothing. Narcissists promise the world, but leave you with ashes so it's really no big loss.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Who Is Stirring Your Pot?

  • Do you allow people to say things and do things that get to you emotionally? 
  • Do you often find yourself being manipulated or controlled?
  • How you react whenever a certain person or certain people say things to hurt you? 
  • Do you feel the need to react to everything that comes your way?
  • Are you easily riled?
  • Do you feel confused and insecure?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, chances are you have a weak sense of self. You may be lacking boundaries and limitations on your expenditure of thoughts, feelings and energy. You may be externally focused on what other people think more than what you yourself thinks. Perhaps you were raised in a family that taught that children are to be seen and not heard. Maybe you were raised in a family where your feelings and thoughts didn't matter. Maybe you were taught growing up that you have no power. If that happened, then you very likely need to build yourself up today.

It's never too late to grow up, mature and become strong with a strong identity that doesn't get stirred up so easily.

Part of my healing journey involved learning to detach from outside forces while at the same time pulling my attention and focus inward into myself. I had to struggle big time to learn to operate from within myself instead of from what everyone else needed, wanted or manipulated me to be. I used to be the kind of person who was very concerned about what others thought--even more concerned with others than I was with myself. I had a hard time sticking to my truth and spent most of my life feeling very confused.

When your sense of self is weak, you have no boundaries. Boundaries are very pervasive, and they come in many sizes, shapes and forms. In this account, the boundaries I'm talking about are boundaries within yourself to know what is your business and what is not your business. Boundaries against going back on your original decisions about yourself, others, your life and situations. Boundaries against your emotions getting riled up by any outside person, place or thing.

Having boundaries to the degree that things don't bother you is difficult and not for the weak minded. You must have a fortified sense of self and a strong identity. This means, you trust your gut (intuition) and you have the discipline to stick by what you want, need, choose and decide. A whole person who is healthy is capable of making sound decisions and sticking to them, regardless of who tries to bring them into mess and drama. A healthy soul is able to observe situations without becoming emotionally dominated. A person who knows who she or he is knows that to honor the self is the most important aspect of being authentic and true.

Who Is Stirring Your Pot?

There are people in this world who are not psychologically healthy. These people love stirring the pot. They love causing drama. They love watching you squirm. They get pure enjoyment out of doing things, saying things and orchestrating situations in which you will be confused, frustrated, abused and or hurt. These people are hurting themselves and they feel powerless. The way they get their power is externally. They feel powerful when they can make a weak and needy person without boundaries feel badly. Sad but true.

These people are all around you. It may be someone you adore. It may be someone you love. The fact that some people like to stir the pot and cause drama is not always a reason to end a relationship, but what is important is that you learn to stay true to yourself, to stand firm in your own truth and not be persuaded to partake into the drama that they trying to create.  Here's the kind of drama I'm talking about:
  • Repeatedly bringing up a friend whom they know you've had a falling out hoping that you'll forget about the incident and continue engaging in the toxic situation. 
  • Bring up things that are bothersome to you that this person knows you will talk about incessantly.
  • Asking you thought-provoking questions at opportune times that takes you off the path of where you're heading and down their rabbit trail of control.
  • Contradict your thoughts, feelings, choices and decisions regarding relationships that leaves you invalidated and confused. 
  • Bringing up past situations when you are trying to grow up and move past such mistakes. 
  • Remind you of past failures, making you feel incompetent and unsure of yourself today.
  • Rub your nose in the successes of others.  
  • Try to get you to feel sorry for them, love for them, pity for them, anger for them... anything which tries to provoke a certain feeling in you.
 The fact is, none of these things would be bothersome to a person with a high self esteem and who values their own thoughts and feelings. A person with a solid sense of self is not going to be swayed by the interjections of a trouble-maker. A person who trust his or herself is going to hold fast to their position and not be stirred easily. Of course, everyone is vulnerable some times. If you're tired, or have a lot of stress, or are enduring personal difficulties, you may be more prone to allowing the whims of others to lead you astray and stir your pot. But for the most part, a healthy, healed person should be able to stand firm in their own authenticity without being shaken.

The key to fortifying your identity lies first in trusting yourself. It's important that you learn to stop second-guessing yourself and that you make firm decisions and choices and that you stick with your values and your beliefs. You have to know what is yours to control and what needs to be left up to the universe to handle. Once you have a firm handle on who you are, and you trust yourself and prove to yourself that you trust yourself, then you will be free to stand firm like an oak tree that is rooted in the ground when the winds of drama come to try to blow you off-center.

Ways to Protect Yourself from Pot-Stirrers

Here is a few ways you can protect yourself from the pot stirrers in your life:
  • Stay mindful of what is coming at you. Watch what is being said and observe your actions and reactions.
  • Stay cognizant of what is yours to control and what is out of your control. Understand that trying to control anything other than your own reaction is a waste of your time.
  • Be aware of your weaknesses and trigger points. Be extra careful when it comes to your weak areas. Let an internal alarm sound if anyone brings up touchy subjects. 
  • Give yourself space. Step away from people who are engaged in the process of trying to drag you into a conversation or situation that you have already determined is not for your highest good.
  • Stay rooted, grounded, centered in your own truth and authenticity.
  • Repeat affirmations related to your own self sufficiency and competency. 
  • Reparent yourself by Catching Yourself and reminding yourself of who you really are and what really matters.
  • Look at the big picture. Oftentimes pot stirrers thrive on your weak trigger points that put you in child mode. Make sure you use your wise mind to see the whole situation with the thoughts of a rational adult. 
  • Meditate regularly so you can notice thoughts without acting on them. 
  • Stay rooted and grounded in the present moment so that the pot stirrers can't make suggestions that cause you to worry, be afraid, feel guilty or ashamed.
The fact is, we will all face people who try to stir our pots from time to time. The key is knowing who you are and standing firm in the face of the temptation to get off track from your own highest good. Allowing someone to hijack you emotionally and psychologically is a misuse of your precious energy. The energy they're trying to grab is energy that could be used to better your life, to love others more and to love yourself more too. Keep your drama to yourself. You'll be glad that you did.

Jenna Ryan
(c) All Rights Reserved

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Miserable Comforters vs. Healthy Support

Who do you turn to when you need a friend? A confidante? Encouragement? Love? The answer to this question is important for your life. Who you turn to for comfort makes a huge difference in the path you take and ultimately, your own self concept.

In the Book of Job in the Old Testament, Job is riddled with maladies. He loses his fortune, his family and his health. His wife betrays him. He is miserable. According to the story, God had given the devil free reign to test Job. Once he was covered in boils and sitting in exile, his so-called friends came along to help him out. These so called friends were quick to judge Job and give reasons as to why he was experiencing what he was experiencing, and what he should do to turn things around. Job called these folks "Miserable Comforters." It is a testament to the judgments of people who have no compassion or insight into the plight of another.

We are social beings. We all need to be comforted and supported by those around us. We are hardwired for connection. If we were raised in functional homes, then we likely have an internal working model of healthy external comfort. When we're feeling down, we have someone to turn to, and that someone will not use our weakness to try to control us or put us down. If, on the other hand, we were raised in homes that were dysfunctional, by parents who were also raised in less-than-nurturing environments, we may not know how to be comforted properly. We may be drawn to people who manipulate us when we turn to them for help, or those who use our misfortune to build their own weak sense of self.

The people in your midst are generally at your same level of psychological maturity. If you grew up in a dysfunctional home, you were not likely able to mature psychologically or emotionally. If you are immature or undeveloped, when you're an adult, you're likely to be attracted to people who are at your same level, or worse--you may be attracted to people who exploit those with lower-level functioning. This is what happened to me.

Along my healing journey, I found that as I grow, I also have to replace people in my life who used to comfort me with people who comfort me properly. Some of the people I turned to in the past supported my fragmented identity and my low self esteem. The truth is, who we turn to for comfort says much about our level of healing. The more healthy a person is, the less they need support, and the more adept they are at seeking out support that will gently support their authentic truth.

Here are the qualities you want to avoid in your external comforters:
  • Tells you what to do. 
  • Criticizes you.
  • Shares your issues with other people.
  • Reminds you of past mistakes.
  • Reminds you of how bad things are.
  • Tries to manipulate you and/or exploit you.
  • Gloats in your weakness.
  • Tells you to "get over it."
  • Acts like your needs for comfort are a burden.
  • Makes you feel worse.
  • Kicks you when you're down.
  • Makes you feel guilty or ashamed for needing comfort.
  • Compares you to other people.
  • Tries to solve your problems.
  • Wishy-washy. One way one day, another way the next.
  • Flaky - Not dependable.
  • Negative and pessimistic in the area you need comfort. 
  • Overly helpful and smothering.
  • Focused on their own problems.
  • Envious.
  • Speaks in cliches, antidotes, platitudes.
  • Know it all.
  • Rigid and legalistic.
  • Needs answers and definition of circumstances (to maintain semblance of control).
Why do people do these things? All sorts of reasons. If you turn to someone who has a low self esteem and poor self worth, then they will do all sorts of things that may seem like comfort, but leave you feeling worse than before. If you turn to someone for support who is insecure, he or she may use your weakness to their own advantage by feeling better than you for not having your same problem. Oftentimes, this kind of "support" is covert. You don't know it is happening because it's subconscious and subtle. This is something you must be aware of. It's important as you grow and heal that you steer clear of this uncomfortable comfort. It's important that you find people to support you who truly value you as a unique individual.

Here are the qualities you want to seek out in your external comforters:
  • Consistent advice.
  • Feels good about themselves so they can support you. 
  • On your side.
  • Trustworthy.
  • Available and accessible.
  • Validates your reality.
  • Accepts you for who you are.
  • Has empathy.
  • Has space in their heart for you.
  • Encourages your growth and change for the better.
  • Cheers you on when you encounter difficult roads in life.
  • Stays on your side, even when it seems like you're surpassing them.
  • Takes up for you against outside opposition.
  • Sticks by your side.
  • Takes what you say at face value.
  • Open and flexible.
  • Empathetic.
  • Expects you to handle your own life well.
  • Believes the best in you.
  • Trusts the process of life, and trusts other people.
  • Gives you time to share without rushing you.
  • Allows you to process without interruption.
  • Leaves things open without having to come to resolution to feel safe.
  • Lets you be who you are without judging you.
  • Does not try to offer a quick-fix. 
  • Positive mindset.
The qualities of a good comforter, or a good friend, are qualities that one possesses who is a whole person. Only a whole person can give you the comfort that you need to maintain a positive sense of self. You need people around you who are willing to let you be who you are, where you are, wherever that place is for you today. You need people who will encourage you, be on your side and nudge you to your highest good. You need people who are healthy so that they can lead you in the healthiest ways. Nobody is perfect. The key is to find comforters who love themselves enough to love you right.

You Need Comforters!!!

Who you choose as your comforters and supporters in this life makes a huge difference in how your life goes. If you choose no one, then you're going to have a very rough time. If you do not seek out any comforters, any support, and if you try to do everything on your own, then you are likely in bad shape. You may cut yourself or be suicidal. If so, I encourage you to get help--get help fast.

If you have supporters in your life who are actually tearing you down, it's time to reevaluate your relationships. Perhaps you need to distance yourself from people who make you feel worse after turning to them for comfort. Maybe you need to seek out people who are a healthy match for your new found self love that you've acquired along your healing journey.

How to Tell if Your Comforters are Uncomfortable

One of the difficult things for me when I was going through this aspect of my healing journey, is determining who to trust. Who to turn to? The answer is more difficult than I wanted it to be. I went through a lot of friends who were incapable of being there for me. I went through a husband or two. I went through therapists. It was very difficult to learn how to trust the right people. It was hard to let go of people I cared about, but who were harming me psychologically. I had to be strong in so many cases. I learned so much along the way.

One way to know if you are being comforted and supported properly is the way that you feel. Your gut is the best indicator of the quality of support you're being given. Your intuition is your internal guidance system that tells you whether what you're experiencing is for your highest good, and whether it is not. So many of us ignore ourselves. This is a problem! You need to be tuned in to yourself like a hawk if you want to live effectively... but that's another article. For this article, let's just say, trust your gut. If you feel like you're being harmed when you seek comfort from a friend, family member, spouse, clergy, therapist... then chances are very good that you are. Trust yourself and protect yourself.

How Miserable Comforters Are

Consider how you feel when you're speaking to this person. Do you feel any of the following ways? If so, then you may want to distance yourself quickly and find some other person to help and support you. Don't keep pouring yourself out to someone who cannot help you.
  • As though life is hopeless, you might as well give up and stay negative.
  • As though nothing ever works out.
  • As though you're not good enough to be heard.
  • As though whatever you're needing is too much of a burden.
  • As though whatever solutions you've found are never going to work.
  • As though you don't know what you're talking about.
  • As though you should feel some other way.
  • As though you are ridiculous for feeling badly or needing comfort.
  • As though they're doing you a favor by listening to you.
  • As though they feel superior to you in your weakness.
  • As though they know all the answers.
  • As though you should be somewhere else, somewhere better in your life.
  • As though whatever you're going through is not that big of a deal.
  • Like crabs in a bucket. If they can't get out, neither can you. 
  • They criticize you.
If someone whom you turn to for comfort displays the attitudes and behaviors of the list above, RUN from that person. Don't walk. RUN! You cannot possibly be comforted by someone who invalidates you, makes you feel inferior and kicks you when you're down. These are not the type of people you need in your life. As a fellow wounded soul on this healing journey, it's crucial that you get away from these "miserable comforters" and find people who are truly on your side.

How Healthy Supporters Are
Healthy people have the inner-capacity to allow you to be who you are in that moment without trying to change you. They are whole people who do not rely on external circumstances to make them feel good about themselves. They don't need to manipulate, one-up you or take anything from you. They are simply alive, happy, positive (for the most part) and they understand that we people need each other to survive and to thrive. These are the people you want in your corner. Here's how they are:
  • They encourage you to seek your own solutions.
  • They believe the best for you, and the best in others, and the best in life.
  • They offer suggestions, but don't shove solutions down your throat.
  • They're empathetic to your plight.
  • They believe whatever you're going through is a big deal; they take you seriously.
  • They give you time and space to express yourself.
  • They don't try to take over your life, they simply allow you to be who you are.
  • They make you feel good, cared for and encouraged.
  • They don't try to make the conversation about them and their problems.
  • They remind you of your victories.
 You can add to this list. I'd love to hear what you think.... feel free to give me more ways in the comment section below.

The moral of this article is that we all need good supporters to help us along the way. It is okay to need support, we were created to need support and to support one another. Unfortunately, some things go astray when we were raised in dysfunction (most of us). We may have a tendency to seek out comforters that we are used to, not people who are actually good for us. We may be covered in unhealthy advice from people who are insecure and who do not love themselves and could not possibly love us. It is crucial for us, as growing, healing people who are on the journey to loving ourselves, to distance ourselves from miserable comforters and find people with our best interests at heart. Good luck in your journey!&

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Real Person vs. A Zombie

Some people are not real. They may look real on the outside, in fact, some zombies look REALLY good on the outside, but nevertheless, once you engage with them, you find out they're not real at all. In fact, they are fake people with fake smiles, fake concern, fake accomplishments, fake everything. I hate that I have to write about this. I hate that there are people out there who are so self absorbed that they feel the need to suck the blood (like a vampire) from other people. Unfortunately, we need articles like this to help keep the real people safe.
Real Person Zombie
  • Cares about feelings of other people.
  • Able to put others first. 
  • Able to love others; has empathy.
  • Is happy for and wishes the best for others.
  • Interested in equal, give and take relationships.
  • Has empathy for others in pain.
  • Does not tend to exploit others.
  • Admits mistakes and takes responsibility for actions. 
  • Keeps word.
  • Associates with people who are genuine and relate-able. 
  • Tries to build people up and encourage them. 
  • Accepts others for who they are.
  • Respects the boundaries of others.
  • Give to others. 
  • Meets the needs of others freely, even if it does not bring direct benefit.
  • Does not cut you. Presence heals you.
  • Keeps word, even if it hurts. 
  • Gets trapped in triangles if he or she is unaware of the manipulations of zombies.
  • Fills up self with self esteem from well inside own heart.
  • Feels badly when hurts anothers feelings. Not afraid to apologize, make amends. 
  • Considerate of other people's time, attention and resources.
  • Interested in relating with others from equal standpoint. 
  • Does not care about other people's feelings. 
  • Is unable to put others first. Selfish & entitled.
  • Cannot love others; no empathy.
  • Envies others and wishes them ill. 
  • Interested in unequal relationships where they always have the upper hand.
  • Enjoys seeing people in pain.
  • Feels entitled to exploit others.
  • Lies to make themselves look better.
  • Will rarely apologize or take responsibility for actions. 
  • Keeps word only if it benefits them.
  • Forms strategic alliances to advance themselves socially.
  • Gossips and puts other people down.
  • Manipulates and controls.
  • Easily offended if someone sets a boundary.
  • Exploit others.
  • Refuse to meet the needs of others unless it directly meets their own needs. 
  • Carelessly cut you and laughs while you're bleeding. 
  • Breaks promises, even if it hurts others.
  • Creates triangles to alienate and abuse others.
  • Gets self esteem from reaction of others. 
  • Enjoys tearing others down--this builds the Zombie's self esteem.

Narcissists Love to Hurt You

One thing a narcissist will do is abuse you directly. But a better tactic for the elusive narc is to have someone else abuse you instead of themselves. This keeps their hands clean. For this reason, a narcissist will almost always encourage you to...
  • Stay in abusive situations.
  • Ignore your own intuition.
  • Feel guilty for taking up for yourself against others who bully you.
  • Ignore toxic behavior.
  • Just get over it.
  • Blame yourself. 
  • Apologize for everything.
A narcissist is not on your side. They don't care about you. As hard as this is to face, especially if this person is a family member, parent, sibling or spouse, it is something you must face in order to get out alive. The narcissist does not think like you; nor does he/she FEEL like you. They are different. They are heartless. Their only concern is for themselves, how they look. They only feel worthy when they make others feel unworthy. It's that simple.

They live to put you down and make you feel rotten, especially if you're a threat. If you're a threat, the narcissist will do everything possible to pull you down and trick you into feeling badly about yourself. They will manipulate you into thinking that you've brought the abuse on yourself... when really, it's their "support" that's kept you hanging onto people who are abusive to you. It's vital that you get the hell away from people who encourage you to stay in abusive or toxic situations. Someone who really cares about you wants to keep you from harm. A true person will encourage you to protect yourself at all costs.

If you are weak in any way... if you are needy in any way... if you harbor any self doubt whatsoever, the narcissist will hone in on this weakness and take full advantage of it. Never share your weakness with a narcissist. They feed on weak people with poor boundaries and weak sense of self. They have a sixth sense for vulnerability and are sizing you up constantly to see what they can exploit.Your pain is narcissistic supply to the narcissist... just like blood to the vampire.

Their ultimate goal is to steal you away from you. They want you to be dumb, confused and easy to control. Their self esteem is derived from making others feel like crap. They subtly encourage you to stay in abusive situations thus harming you without them actually doing it directly. When they're able to do this effectively, they get a little "kick" in their heart... like when a normal person feels when we are generous or make someone happy. A narcissist feels good when she inflicts pain on you.

The toxic behaviors of the narcissist ARE PAINFUL to a real person who has a real (not fake) heart. A real person has feelings and needs and wants true connection. The narcissist promises connection but then renigs on the deal at the last minute--after they feel they've dominated you. Their greatest pleasure is to cause others pain. Your pain is the narcissist gain. When you hurt, the narc feels like she has won, and in a way, she has.

If you allow yourself to be duped by the false promises of the narcissist to love and treat you with respect, then you can only look to yourself for the reason why. Why would you subject yourself to the put-downs, lies and manipulations of the narcissist? You must find out and repair those old wounds.

The only real way to win against the narcissist is to get away from them. They can never love and will forever hate you because you can. They will try to pull you into your web by getting close to your non-narc friends and family, but don't fall for the triangulation. The narcissist is all mirrors and lights. They have nothing you need. They can add nothing and can take nothing away. You are free and beautiful and amazing. Go out and love yourself and find real people to love. <3

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Love Bombing

Love Bombing is a very common tactic used by narcissists, sociopaths, psychopaths and other toxic individuals to lure a victim into trusting him or her and gaining power and control over the victim's life. Love bombing can occur in lovers, friends, family--anywhere you find a narcissist or toxic person. Examples of love bombing include any of the following types of behaviors...
  • Texting you all the time
  • Telling you you're their soul mate.
  • Putting you in the same context as their long-term ex or ex husband or wife.
  • Wanting to take you out.
  • Liking everything that you say or do.
  • Being over all crazy about you.
  • Doing favors for you, going out of their way for you.
  • Be extremely passionate sexually.
  • I feel like you're the most beautiful thing I've ever seen their whole lives.
  • Being selfless while focusing totally on you.
  • Progressing the relationship quickly.
  • Future faking. (Making comments about a future that never happens...)
  • Sweeping you off your feet.
  • Promising you everything you've ever wanted in a relationship.
  • Professing to be your best friend.
  • Rushing to have sex, move-in together, get married.
  • Sending you letters, emails, texts professing love and devotion.
  • Being constantly available to you.
  • Selflessly meeting your needs.
  • Seeming to think you're the most beautiful thing in the world.
  • Wanting to spend every moment with you.
  • Tying up all your time on the phone, via text or in person.
Love Bombing is a tactic for brainwashing people. This tactic is often used by religious groups to recruit new members. Love Bombing is a cult-favorite and very disoriented for the victim. The victim feels flattered and overwhelmed by all the attention and adoration he or she gets from the love bomber. The Love Bomber is merely a sheep in wolves clothing... What originally feeds this victim will eventually feed off of her.

How Does Love Bombing Work?

Love Bombing works in the following ways to disorient, overwhelm and over-take the victim's normal thought processes:
  • Causes the victim to feel flattered.
  • Promises a needy victim the love he or she never got before.
  • Isolates the victim from friends, family, etc... because focus is on Love Bomber.
  • Causes the victim to ignore red flags because he or she is so intrigued by the constant flow of attention.
  • Causes the victim to emotionally depend on the love bomber.
  • Causes a feeling of reciprocity in the victim which makes him feel obligated to pay back the kindness of the love bomber in the future. 
  • Incites the fantasies of ideal love / fairytale love in the victim which ultimately become a trap.
  • Cause victim to trust the love bomber.
  • Take the victim off track from their own internal guidance system.
  • Cause the victim to believe that the love bomber truly cares.
  • Cause the victim to disbelieve negative behavior of the love bomber which will come eventually.
The Problem with Love Bombing

The problem with love bombing is that it is not real. Sure, it would be great if another person would come along, sweep us off our feet, tell us we're the greatest person on earth, and give us the 24/7 unconditional love we missed-out-on as a kid. Yes, that would be nice... and we CAN get that kind of love, but not from a stranger. The kind of love the love bomber promises to fill is the kind of love that you can only give to yourself. You've got to love yourself the way the love bomber is pretending to love you.

Plus, the love bomber is so taken by you, that he MUST eventually give up the charade. It's not healthy to have someone so attached, attracted and dependent on you. Eventually, this person who is all over you will swing back the other way and become the opposite toward you. This is where things get painful for the unaware victim of love bombing.

The Results of Love Bombing

If you are taken away by the love bombing tactics of the narcissist, you're in for a very hard fall. These disordered people gain your trust, promise you the sun and stars, then drop you in mid air from an airplane without a parachute. You hit the ground. Kerplunk! It hurts! The key is steering clear of love bombers in the first place... Or, making sure you don't put all your eggs in this love bomber's basket to begin with. Also, allowing people to unfold over time instead of allowing them to rush you into a relationship or friendship before you're ready.

The Love Bomber is attempting to brainwash you by meeting all your needs and being super-attentive towards you. He or she subconsciously knows that they are hijacking your internal judgment system. Eventually, when she is done and has what she wants from you, she will discard you like a piece of trash. This is a very common tactic of the narcissist. To discard you. This is part of the Sweet/Mean Cycle.

Once you are hooked on this narcissist, it's too late. Your judgment is thwarted. Your identity is stolen. You get your sole source of feeling good from this person who once loved you, but is now treating you with disdain. The toxic process of devaluation includes these types of behaviors:
  • Ignoring your texts.
  • Not texting you anymore, or reaching out to call you.
  • Not wanting to see you anymore.
  • Withdrawing from the relationship.
These tactics are control tactics that narcs use to exact narcissistic supply from their victims. These tactics are also signals to your subconscious that you're doing something wrong and that you need to change what you're doing to please the narcissist. These tactics also teach you that something is wrong with you... (especially if you already have issues with this negative core belief to begin with). 

After the love bombing phase, you begin to see that it was all an act. This person didn't love you or care about you at all. You were simply taken for a fool and then you're stuck with an awful, painful mess of sorting through how you gave yourself away to a liar. This is where healing can begin.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Hidden Messages of Toxic People

How do you know if a friend, acquaintance or family member is toxic? There are some usual tell-tale signs. First of all, you must know, when you're dealing with a toxic person, you're not simply engaging with them. You are in a battle; a battle for power and control. Toxic people base their interactions on power and control. They want to engage with you, but only in a way that puts them on top, and you on bottom.

Unfortunately, these disordered human beings feel out-of-sorts when you are equal. They need to feel superior in order to maintain their self esteem. They come across as aloof and as though they don't need you, when in reality, they're quite needy. They only get their self esteem from external sources... from doing things that subtly put you in your "place." One of the main ways a toxic person sends a message of inequality to those around him or her is through subtle ignoring, withdrawal and the Silent Treatment. This is the process of leaving you hanging, not answering your texts, not responding to your invitations or checking their phone when the two of you are having lunch.

Checking phone when you're in mid sentence during lunch, dinner or other 2 way conversation. 

You may think this is no big deal, when in fact, it is a big deal because it sends a subconscious (and often conscious) message that you are not worth listening to. It causes the speaker to question him or herself and to feel less-than interesting. If a speaker is codependent and unaware of this mean toxic tactic, he or she may try harder to engage the ignoring other, or simply be quiet, assuming that what they say is not important. Everyone has a need to be heard. You have a right to expect your needs to be met, and you have a right to be heard. A toxic person ignoring you as you're speaking is rude and inconsiderate. If you continue to put up with this behavior, it will erode your self esteem.

When I am eating, drinking and/or conversing with someone, I am aware of the messages that the other person is sending to me. I listen to my own gut about how I feel. If I feel uneasy, or if the person starts ignoring me as I am speaking, I stop speaking. I may even let them know that I can't talk while someone is texting others. If they won't stop after I set a boundary, I will end the lunch. Yes, I will get up and walk away. Life is too short to pour myself out to disrespectful people. I need my self esteem and I need people who respect me enough to listen to me and show me that they are interested in what I have to say. I MATTER and so do you.

Ignoring your texts.

This is an interesting one. There are 2 types of ignoring (probably more, but I'm only dealing with 2). One type is when you send a text and the person never responds. The second type is when you say something and the person glosses over what you said by not answering. Here's a nice breakdown of unacceptable behavior of toxic people that over time will rob you of your self esteem and take away from you rather than build you up.

"A skilled emotional manipulator gets you to put your sense of self worth and emotional well-being into his hands. Once you make that grave mistake, he methodically and continually chips away at your identity and self-esteem until there's little left." ~ Psychopaths and Love 

1. Not responding to your initial text. This is a sign that the other person is not interested in communicating with you or that they did not receive the text. You can let this slide once, but if it happens 3 times within a few months, you can bet this person is sending you a subtle message that you are unimportant and less-than them. If a person is too busy to send a quick text back, this person is too busy for you. Go find someone more interested in you who can meet your needs equally.

2. Saying something totally unrelated to what you've said. Some people have the nerve to totally ignore your topics of conversation by text, phone or in person. They may not answer your question, but instead say whatever it is they want to say. This is a subtle form of dissing. It sends a message to your subconscious that you are invisible; and that what you have to say is not important.

3. Not responding to the last thing you said. How hard is it to send a smiley face? Say haha or finish up a conversation? I've noticed that people who have a stake in being one-up over others do not reply or finish conversations. They leave things open, which leaves you feeling like you just said the most stupid thing in the world. I know this is subtle, but that's how nuts toxic people are. They use every opportunity to dominate over others and make people they're dealing with feel less-than and worthless.

4. Waiting a long time to respond to texts. Everyone is busy. We live in a busy world, and we can't expect to be at the top of everyone's agenda 24 hours a day, however, there is a limit to how busy a person should be before you scrap the relationship and find someone else who is more attentive to your needs for reciprocity.  If someone you're dealing with consistently fails to respond to your texts in a timely manner, or leaves you hanging, then you could be dealing with a toxic person who is trying to dominate you and ultimately control you. I recommend letting this person know this behavior is bothersome and setting a boundary to protect yourself from being negated in any way.

Some people like this you have to deal with, for example people at work and/or family members. Other people, you have a choice to walk away and find people who treat you well. I have found that the text process is a great way to find out if you're dealing with a person who is sane... that is, interested in a reciprocal, give-and-take, equal relationship... or the opposite. A narcissistic control freak who wants to gain power over you--or somewhere in between.

Being less available.

A toxic person is all about controlling you. When you are being controlled by a toxic person, you may not even realize it. They do little things. Tiny things that seem like no big deal to you. Let's say, for example, they are pulling the Sweet/Mean Cycle on you. They want to control some aspect of your life, so they've been LOVE BOMBING you by being nice and meeting all your needs--and more. Now, it's time for the leveling. This is when the narcissist goes from idealizing you to devaluing you. Some toxic people use this process to control you and bring you back into line.

You may not realize it, but you will subconsciously notice that the toxic person is no longer attending to you like before. You may not see it plainly, but deep down, you will associate this person's poor, declining treatment of you as an indication that they're no longer happy with you. You're no longer accepted. Maybe you got a new job, a new boyfriend or a raise. A disordered person, who was there for you like Mother Theresa when you were down, now suddenly starts pulling away. Subconsciously, you may start to sabotage your new found happiness in order to maintain this relationship. WATCH OUT. This is a powerful form of control that can cripple your life and frustrate you immensely.

Pay attention when people are there for you and when you are feeling needy. Notice changes in the relational style of those closet to you, especially if you've been a victim of emotional abuse or narcissistic abuse. It may not be you. You may be the puppet of a toxic controlling person without even realizing it!

Insinuating there is something wrong with you and/or your decisions and life choices.

Let's face it. Happy, well-adjusted people with high self esteem do not feel the need to tear others down or to make them feel like there is something wrong with them. It is only people who feel little, insecure and intimidated that will go the extra mile to try to make you feel badly. A toxic person is very subtle, but will make statements and ask little questions that are intended to make you second guess yourself. Watch for this! Someone who loves and cares about you, someone who is good for you will build you up and encourage you--they won't be making little digs that negate and deflate you. A healthy person will not cause you to have to defend yourself or give excuses. Only sick, unhealthy people try to downgrade others.

The key to stopping these negative messages from infiltrating your soul is to build your own identity and seek out healthy people. Do whatever it takes to build a positive support system of people who are on your side and who are not toxic. Weed out negative toxic people from your life by limiting your communication and time you spend with them. Remind yourself that you matter. Continue to cultivate rich friendships with people who value you and who have something to offer. Steer clear from envious others and those with an agenda. So much more I could say, but this is all for today.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Hurtful People Are Not True Friends

It's one thing to keep friends together, but some friends are not worth keeping!!! It doesn't matter how long you've known a person. If you are continuously being hurt, invalidated, disrespected, smothered or ignored, then you need to get away--no question. Even if this person is a beloved family member, parent, child, sibling, you can't allow others to push you around, use and abuse you!!! You must draw boundaries to protect yourself!!! Set limits to keep toxic people, bullies, invalidators and narcissists away!!! You cannot change them. You can only change yourself, so stop trying to help them.

Anyone who tries to make you feel guilty, stupid or ashamed for walking away from a person who is hurting you is themselves TOXIC. Don't listen!!! They want you to stay the way you are for selfish reasons. They don't care about you or your feelings or your peace or your future. People who care so little for you that they would encourage you to be a doormat and keep hurtful people in your life are NOT YOUR FRIENDS.

Find people who SUPPORT YOU in your journey. Someone who loves you backs you up. Someone who loves you respects YOUR decisions to end relationships, take a step back or go No Contact. A true friend respects your decisions and encourages you to do WHATEVER IT TAKES to stay safe. A true friend is on your side.

Instead of fighting these manipulators and defending yourself against their poisonous darts, put them at arms length. Give yourself more room to breathe. Life is so much more!!! You'll be surprised at how much better you feel!!! I promise!!!

REMEMBER: It is a PRIVILEGE to know you.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Love Yourself Enough

I'm going to start a series called "Love Yourself Enough." I'm going to write a bunch of graphics that remind us to love ourselves enough. XO

LOVE YOURSELF ENOUGH to let people unfold before you let them in. 
~ Jenna SelfLoveU 

Love yourself enough to detach from other people's problems.
~ Jenna SelfLoveU

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Crucial Conversations [Infographics]

The Drama Triangle

Here is the Drama Triangle which is a diagram of unhealthy, dysfunctional family dynamics.

The Drama Triangle The Three Rolls of Victimhood

‘Why does this always happen to me?’ ‘I was only trying to help!’
Does this familiar? If so, then you are in a game.

A game is an ongoing conversation between two people that ends with bad feelings for at least one of the participants.

Every person has a favourite game that they play out of awareness. The person will play the game repeatedly with different people and in different circumstances but the pattern will always be the same; the person will always end up with the same feeling at the end of the game.

Games are played from the positions of Rescuer, Victim or Persecutor.

Games are a substitute for real connection and true intimacy.

Friday, April 24, 2015

You Have to Love Yourself More Than Your Relationships

No matter who you're dealing with, you've got to hold onto yourself and operate from a place of integration, worth, value and self esteem. You can't put any relationship above your dignity. This includes relationships with friends, lovers, spouses, children, coworkers or acquaintances. Don't withhold from exerting boundaries to keep people in your life. Don't ignore your needs to not be a burden. Set boundaries. Define your personal space emotionally, physically, spiritually. Set lines and assert limits. Be a True, Authentic Person... not a beggar who is grateful for crumbs and terrified of rejection. It's better to be by yourself than to be a door mat. ~ Ms JLR

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Narcissist Sweet / Mean Cycle

This video is an excellent explanation of the narcissist Sweet / Mean Cycle. The Sweet / Mean Cycle is a manipulative tactic used by toxic people to control you. If you fall for the sweet / mean cycle, you will become confused as you diminish yourself, deny your own needs AND work overtime to make the toxic person happy at your own expense.

The Sweet Mean Cycle is a process the toxic person uses to gain control of their victims. The victim is generally someone who has been abused this way growing up who is groomed to give up their rights and be a puppet to external sources.

This intermittent reinforcement of sometimes nice sometimes mean creates a split in the victim's psyche that sucks up energy and causes one to lose their grip on their own identity, worth and value.

The Sweet Mean Cycle is used by the Perpetrator in the Drama Triangle to entangle his or her victim. Once enthralled, these two people dance around in recurrent roles of Victim, Perpetrator, Rescuer. Each wears masks while making the other responsible for their own feelings. Make no mistake. This is a dance on the part of the Perpetrator who uses the manipulative Sweet / Mean Cycle, and the victim who allows it to happen by abandoning his or her self.

This abusive relationship heads downhill fast with the one who has the most power gaining control and benefit. The one who gives his or her power away suffers most.