Decisions can be such a struggle for some of us. For others it can seem like, “No big deal!”
What is it, do you imagine, that makes the difference between those two ways of perception?
In my experience, it’s caused by some developmental trauma. It could be a type of neglect that happened in life, when one was growing and developing into themselves. If we weren’t attended to, or held in our experience repeatedly, to know that we matter. Or if we were not found in our distress, or know that it is even safe to HAVE distress. Each of those can cause a different kind of complexity.
As our nervous system is growing and developing, we are making all those connections in our brain and our body. The map of who I am is being formed by both nature and nurture. We all carry epigenetics within us, and we can have generational trauma that is passed down, it doesn’t have to stay that way though.
It may not be a quick fix, but when as a quick fix ever been lasting? Healing YOU is definitely worth the #Journey.
So what might happen, when you have a fear of making decisions? You might get scared whether you could share how you feel about something. Because deciding to share is a decision itself. Or we get scared to share because of our fear how others may see us. This is a looping thought pattern that our default mode network spins for us, repeatedly, over and over. It can grow in its intensity, immobilizing you.
You could be afraid to share transparently out of a fear of what others might think about you. Some of our worst fears might be that someone would think, “She’s a dork, or what a baby, you are just too sensitive, you are over-emotional, why don’t you grow up.”
The fears can mount, especially when you feel close to someone and then you spiral into doubt, and worry, and fear, that if I decide to share something with them about what REALLY going on for me, they might LEAVE me! Then I wouldn’t even have a relationship.
So we STUFF IT DOWN INSIDE OF US in our fear, and it’s painful. For many of us that loop in this dynamic, we are so terrified that we are hopeless. At times we may feel absolutely helpless that it’s possible to ever get out of the loop. So, we diminish ourselves, we become really little. Not just figuratively little, sometimes we go deep inside and all we have is that inner voice. We start to believe that it’s telling us the truth.
So what might be the antidote? I know for me, when I was caught in that spiral dynamic, I needed someone to see me right there. With compassion. With warmth and gentleness. I was exquisitely tender, like a frightened fawn that would dart off in heartbeat if I sensed anything at all. Hyper-alert.
What also might happen is when you are seen, if it’s not with compassion, you can move into the pain of collapse so your body can’t feel the pain because it’s too enormous.
Say someone had the courage to share what they are afraid of, and they are met by someone saying, “Oh no, that’s not right. You got that wrong. That wasn’t about you, that was my experience.” That’s when the collapse can happen. Or, a rage can come up inside the person because they are told they are “wrong”.
I want to slow it down immediately. I want to create a container with Rumi. I want to sit with you out in the field beyond right and wrong. I want to be in a field where we can be together and your experience is held and caught for what it feels like INSIDE OF YOU when you’ve been received that way. When you’ve had the courage to share and you didn’t get caught.
I might make a guess, “Do you feel hopeless and helpless, nearing despair, that anyone in this whole universe could ever catch you with care? Would it be so lovely to have a little bit of a shift so you could begin to breathe again? Are you needing trust that somewhere in this world, you really do matter, and your experience matters? Are you needing to experience somebody just to sit with you, right there in your pain, for as long as you need to be held? So your body can actually begin to feel that you ARE being accompanied, and that you are safe, and that you are held in the arms of love? To begin to even tune into the possibility that love can never be separated from you? Especially, when it feels like it must be?
I want to take time, with any parts, that have spiraled down so far that they are near despair. I want to reach out and let you know you don’t have to be alone. There are places in this world that lead from their hearts with compassion. There is support possible when you need it. When you can find the courage to reach out and ever so slowly, allow yourself to discover different, through your experience.
I remember once upon a time in my life, when it felt like my life was falling apart. My mother had cancer and it wasn’t looking good for her. I was traveling, doing my best to keep a job, raise my children, and then travel to the other side of the state to help care-take my mom. Because I love her, and wanted to have every moment I could have with her.
There were other experiences in my life that were so out of congruence. I was wearing a mask and pretending to be someone I was not. Attempting to survive pain that I couldn’t even name. When my mom passed on, I just collapsed, I was done. I was done with this thing called “pretending to be something I’m not” and if I don’t know who I am, then it’s about time I found a way.
I have a dear friend that opened a door for me, to meet with a really gentle therapist, and this woman got me. When we can be willing, to find the courage to allow our tender, fractured parts, to be seen and held with compassion by another, and we can choose trust in something greater than ourselves to create that container, miracles can happen. As I grew in my capacity to trust this other person, I grew enough that she asked me if I’d be willing to participate in some groups.
I leaned in and I said, “But I feel a lot more safe when I’m just with you.”
She leaned in close to me and said, “Yeah, I know, that feels really safe, and that’s okay, and when you are ready, would you be willing to look at the groups?”
To be met right there was liberating! And to think about being seen in a group was a little terrifying at the same time!
So if that’s your experience, I want to encourage you to take your time. There’s no hurry and there’s no need for pressure. You can begin to trust your own felt-sense of life. Especially if you can find one person that you begin to trust, and you keep coming back and making those repairs, anytime you feel like there is a rupture inside. It will help to strengthen that pathway within you to grow a bedrock of trust you can count on.
Notice the fear, “I’m afraid to transparently share, because I’m afraid what will happen when I transparently share.”
Find one place where you can begin to name that, and notice what happens in your body when you are met with compassionate, and understanding. Allow your focus to begin to dwell there more and more, with that little baby step that you took. Acknowledge that it really did make a difference. Breathe into that and notice your body.
One little baby step at a time. Especially when holding these parts that have felt so helpless and hopeless. Those experiences are learned, they are learned from our environments and they are never on purpose, and there are people that know that. There are people that hold space for that. Dare to reach out and find them and choose to trust. Something greater than us really does hold all of us on this journey of life.
Thanks for being on this journey with me. Healing You.