Isolate the Problem
Are you aware of your core wound?
For me it was complete insecurity and lack of confidence. As a child, every choice I made was questioned because everybody wanted me to play it safe all the time. I’m not much on playing it safe because I find it boring. I much prefer the scenic route. The result of questioning every choice I made was that I lost confidence in myself.
Were the people around me doing anything wrong? No. It was an unintended consequence of their need to feel safe and do the predictable thing that they projected onto me. What I did with it within myself was to take it on, question my choices, and become a people-pleaser. It’s not a good strategy in case you’re curious.
So, what’s your core wound and do you try to heal the whole thing at once?
Life shows you your wounds through your experiences. When you end up in an argument you didn’t want to get into, that’s the Universe showing you that wound again. When that same pattern repeats over and over and over again that’s also the Universe showing you that wound again. Life is offering you your wounds all the time sometimes just through how you see what’s going on around you. For some of us, we know this and so it makes us hyper aware of the issues we have or even the issues we think we have.
What do we try to do with that?
Heal it all in one shot! We try to cut down the whole dang tree in one giant piece. You know what? You can’t do that it. It won’t work.
Here’s the thing – it’s not that you couldn’t do it, you just won’t let yourself. There are far too many things that would upend themselves if you just made a massive shift, that you won’t allow yourself to just let all the stuff go at the same time. So yes, you could do it all at once but fear stops you from doing that.
But there’s actually a strategy that you can use to inch your way forward without freaking yourself out. What is it?
Isolate your experiences and deal with the things that come up in isolation – even when you see the connections.
I still do this. I still isolate experiences and pain to make it easier to manage. Could I do more at a time? Yep probably. I definitely don’t have the fear around healing like I did when I started. But I still make the choice to heal in isolation.
It creates an onion effect where you keep going back to grab new pieces of the same wounds. That’s okay there is nothing with it. It just takes a little bit longer to get to the same place.
The trick is in your perspective. Your mind wants the instant gratification of doing it all at the same time and being done with it. Let’s carry in all 20 grocery bags at the same time instead of making multiple manageable trips. That’s the mentality. But when we’re healing that doesn’t work so well. It keeps you from moving forward at all because of the amount of fear it creates.
So, while you may be able to he-man those 20 grocery bags from your car to your kitchen in one shot, you’re unlikely to be able to deal with the fear of trying to change your entire life in one fowl swoop. You’re not afraid of the groceries, but you are afraid of massive life change and that’s the difference.
When I have an experience, I isolate it and contain it. I don’t let the scope creep kick in. It’s not related to the other hundred times I’ve had a similar experience. It’s not about that person or our relationship or any of those things. It’s just about me and my response or reaction to what happened. It’s not about the experience because I can’t change that. It’s not about the other person because I don’t have control over them. It’s just about me. Why did I react that way this time? What was that about?
By keeping it contained I can find the button that was pushed. I can find the trigger that way and manage it or heal it so that it’s not a problem anymore. I deal with the trigger in isolation even when I see the deeper connection. I ignore that until I’ve dealt with the pain.
Once I’m no longer in pain and I have the clarity I need around a given situation, then I can begin to expand my scope a bit if I want to. I wait so that I’m not using pain as a means of understanding my experience or even as a means of understanding how my wounds are connected to each other. Pain turns your perception into a fun house mirror that distorts everything. You have to deal with the pain first so it’s not screwing with your perception.
The pain you’re dealing is only in relation to the experience. It’s not childhood trauma. It’s the experience you just had. Isolate that. You don’t heal the pain of what happened when you were 6 at same time as you’re dealing with what happened on Monday. You deal with what happened on Monday, heal that, release it, and then if you see the connection to what happened when you were 6 you work through that after. Just bookmark that connection and come back later.
Truthfully, the more practice you get at healing the little things when they happen the faster you’ll be able to move from one to the other. I can do it all in the same 5 minutes a lot of the time because most of the things that happen in my experience are very minor. But trust me, when I first started this process it wasn’t like that. It took me months to work through things that I can heal now very quickly. Why? Because of fear.
When you’re not used to healing and releasing pain, the ego and mind object to the process. They don’t know who they are without the pain so they don’t want you to release it. The ego thinks it’ll have nothing to do if there is no pain there. The mind doesn’t have a story to make up if there is no pain there. They want you to hang onto the pain because they see that as their job security.
Now remember, you’re not evicting the ego. We’re not getting rid of our minds. We need these things. They are how we maneuver in our 3D world. We can’t evict them, but what we can do is offer them some new strategies that don’t involve us being stuck in the pain forever. You can teach them that it’s okay to release the pain. They will be able to keep their jobs even after the pain is gone. The job description just starts to look a little different and that doesn’t have to be a bad thing.
Once the mind and the ego see that things are changing but they aren’t being scrapped, they start to play along more. It gets easier. They stop getting in your way so much. They just need to see that there is a new way to move forward and that it’s nothing to be afraid of. Once they see that they heal willingly most of the time.
Isolating individual experiences helps with the whole thing. It makes things manageable. They aren’t overwhelming. It doesn’t offer the same amount of fear, even though there may still be some fear present. It stops you from piling up painful experiences. Remember the laundry pile? Are you still throwing new experiences on the pile?
Just like your washing machine can’t handle all the laundry at the same time if the pile is big enough, you can’t heal everything at once either when the pile is too big. The first strategy is to learn to stop throwing new stuff on the pile. Unlike the laundry, we don’t have to keep piling up pain. It’s harder to walk around naked so you don’t have to do laundry, but you can stop piling up pain. By learning to manage those little experiences, it makes dealing with the big stuff easier.
Ultimately this all comes down to choice. How do I want to feel in my life? Based on how you want to feel in your life, you start to heal and change the things that will offer you the feeling you want to have. Anything that doesn’t make you feel the way you want to offers you the opportunity to choose to keep or get rid of that thing.
Every relationship you have with every person, place, or thing in your life is a choice. In every moment you make the choice those people, places, and things around or let them go. Your job is only to shift yourself within those things. You don’t try to control them because they are outside of you. That is how you manage yourself within the experience.
If your intent is to hang onto that person, place, or thing then you shift yourself within that relationship. The idea is that if you change your response or reaction, the external thing will also shift because you did. We’re not creating from a place of manipulation. We do this from a place of internal healing. You’re taking care of yourself within the experience by shifting yourself in such a way that you feel better within the relationship.
How do I want to feel in the relationship? What action do I need to take that I have control over that will allow me to create that feeling in the relationship?
It’s important that you heal the pain first when you do this because if you don’t it does become manipulation. Pain will make you manipulate the situation. Clarity will allow you to heal the situation. You heal the situation by managing yourself within the experience, which often means changing how you respond or react to that experience.
If you do this in an isolated way, one experience at a time, eventually your whole life looks different. I’ve done this with hundreds of experiences at this point and my life looks very different than it used to. I created a feeling of freedom and well-being in my life. I shifted how I responded and reacted to what was going on around me in such a way that I created the feelings that I was after.
I didn’t make anybody else change. I didn’t take control of the external world. I managed myself within that experience. The only thing I changed was myself within that experience. Sometimes that means you take on responsibilities that you were avoiding before because of pain. Sometimes that means you begin to do things that you didn’t do before because of pain. Sometimes that means you stop doing other things that you were doing because of pain. It’s going to look different for everybody.
For me some of it was just accepting the role of homemaker which was a trigger point for me. Why? Because it made me feel like I was at the beck and call of everybody around me. My lack of self-confidence caused me to be a people-pleaser. My solution to that way of being was to become stubborn and independent to a fault. Independence to me meant I wasn’t doing things for other people, including taking care of the home. Because if I was doing things for other people then they would have control over me and try to make me do more. I didn’t want that. I had this very all or nothing way of looking at it that was based on pain. I didn’t trust myself to be able to say no, which was the people-pleaser side of me. To counteract that, I just stubbornly didn’t do anything.
As I healed those wounds in isolation, eventually I was able to get to a place where I started to accept my role in the home without the pain. I learned that I could control what I took on and what I didn’t. I didn’t have to get back into being a people-pleaser. I didn’t have to turn into Cinderella. I could balance that relationship and have it work in a way that didn’t cause me pain.
Everything was perceptual for me. None of it was actually happening around me. It was all my own way of seeing the world. Pain screwed with my perception and frequently made me feel trapped in situations and circumstances that I wasn’t trapped in at all. By slowly healing wounds one at a time, I was able to get to a place where I recognized my wonky perception, healed it, and then began to change my behavior.
What did the behavior change look like? I started to do the things that I had been avoiding. I started to balance my relationship with my environment at home. As I shifted myself within that, my home environment changed because I changed myself within it. I didn’t demand anything of anybody else. It was all internal work.
Guess what? I created the feelings of security and well-being that I was after. When I balanced everybody else did too without me having to engage in an argument with them at all.
Is it perfect? Of course not.
But again, if the relationship is wanted then I have to accept that I don’t have control over the people around me. That means if they aren’t fully able to balance themselves, I have to be okay with that. I can’t victimize myself with that.
“How come I have to do these things or be this way and they don’t?”
That victimization would keep me stuck in the pain. It’s not a true story. Why isn’t it true? Because I made a choice to heal. It was my own doing. Nobody made me do anything. I can’t make them make the same choice and I’m not a victim of my own choices. Projecting that onto them isn’t fair. It’s not their responsibility to heal just because I did and I have to accept that.
Remember, that relationship is a choice. If I don’t want to stay in it I don’t have to. I can change the relationship again or I can leave it entirely. If I want to argue with the idea that other people aren’t doing what I think they should be doing, then I’m not going to be happy in the relationship and that offers me the choice to leave it.
I’m managing myself within the experience. Because I’m not managing other people, I have to leave them where they are. I can’t make other people change. I’ve taught myself to stay out of stories of blame, shame, guilt, and victimization which means I don’t go down this path anymore. I shut that down at the pass. I won’t allow that story to even get started.
When it wants to get started, I question where it’s coming from because that’s signaling to me that there is hidden pain there somewhere that I need to go find. Again, I do this in isolation. I’m focused only on this one thing. I deal with it until I’m able to release it so I don’t throw it on the laundry pile or start doing things that are just going to piss me off or make me victimize myself. I wait until I can manage myself within it before I create it in the external world. If it doesn’t work or pain comes up, I back off, fix it within myself, and try it again.
Pain isn’t a bad thing. It’s a hint that there is something there. If you isolate it and deal with it within the experience you’re having it’ll make healing a whole bunch easier to manage and it’ll cause far less fear in the long run.
Believe me, I’ve sat in my fair share of fear. Learning to manage the fear is an important part of healing. But why torture yourself? Self-punishment isn’t helpful and it doesn’t serve a purpose. It just offers you self-created pain which is completely unnecessary. You have enough to heal. Why make this process more difficult than it already is?
Love to all.
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