We are all told stories.
We are told stories about who we are. We are told stories about the ways of the world. We are told stories of who we can be when we grow up. We are told the stories through the media of the state of the world and our country. Stories. Constantly told stories.
How do we know if they are true? If they were true at one point do they need to remain true for the rest of our lives?
Do you remember some of the themes that you were told as a child? They might now be so familiar that you think the statements are coming from you. It might sounds like this, "no matter what you do you'll never be good enough," or "money doesn't grow on trees," or "you're the athlete/musician/smart one in the family," or "why can't you be more like so-in-so." Maybe you were told you're hard to get along with, that you're weird, or that life is eternally more stressful with you in it.
These themes, these statements, these STORIES we are told begin to become internalized from a very young age. I'm not getting all Fruedian on you here, merely speaking about what I have learned over the years after working with so many people. And hey, I have personal experience on my side on this one too. We here these statements and stories at an age when we are learning about who we are. When we hear about who we are from the people that keep us alive and safe and provide for us in every way, we tend to believe them.
Then we grow up and without realizing it we are continuing with these often debilitating and belittling stories. They have become who we are, we have become them. We suddenly have a glass celiing on who we are and what we can do with our lives. Feeling really happy lately? Ah yes but wait for the other shoe to fall, right? Because we are not worthy of happiness. Etc, etc.
So how do we know if they are stories or if they are truths? Here is one idea, if you asked 100 people a question and they answered the question the same way you are for yourself then it's a truth. If they would answer it differently it's a story. And a story that is most likely trapping you. Keeping you stuck over and over again. Sick of living like this?
I know I sure was and so are many of my clients. As with anything, awareness is the first step. You might start to become aware of the things you repeat to yourself most often. What are some of your favorite insults for yourself? Are there phrases you use over and over again about life or your job? Once we begin to have awareness we can enter the next stages.
Here's to you on your journey of awareness! <3