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Input on Not Looking Outward For Worth
October 27, 2006
6:00 pm
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Travlin_lite
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Hi,
This group has been so helpful and healing along with my other support groups. As I am working so heavily on myself and past relationships looking more at my behavior than their's for a change.I've noticed something significant and wanted some feedback. I realized for most of my life. I have developed a personal trait that my worthiness was the pits and I often sought other's approval or accept what was the "victim" in me. I gave up the silly clown, the creativeness, the belief systems. I want to know if other's have done so long term. Also wanted to know who has learned not to seek approval from other's but embrace one's self and knowing it is okay. I know this is not a simple solution but I don't want to have my patterns come out again, I want to know the signs and know how to block the repeat behavior. Hope I am making sense. Anyway thanks ahead of time with what you share I know it will help.

October 27, 2006
6:05 pm
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on my way
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yuk...me, I have done this for many many years. But I am not there as much as I was. I had a problem with my older sister...her word was gospel, even tho I didn't agree with everything, her opinions have effected me most of my life. However, over time it does not happen anymore. I guess by experience of the pain of this happening it finally sunk in that thinkig this way does not serve me or others at all.

October 27, 2006
6:15 pm
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truthBtold
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WOW!

First off - I really like your user name: Travelin_Lite!!!! Yes indeed - assuming no other "unwanted baggage need apply" Love It!!!

Secondly, you are probably one of the most "advanced" participants I have run across thus far on this forum and am excited that you have posted.

It sounds to me like you did the real hard, near impossible "messy" work of looking at yourself and your belief systems honestly. NOT AN EASY THING TO DO!

I am wondering, what other support groups are you involved with? Are they something that can be accessed via the web?

I guess the thing that really stands out to me is your statement that you "gave up" (which normally is automatically associated with defeat) the notion of silly clown, creativeness and belief system...kind of goes hand in hand with one of my recent postings about our pride.

Anyway, I can not answer to your post directly as I am not, as yet, that evolved in my own journey - but am happy to know someone who is!!!

October 27, 2006
7:00 pm
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gracenotes
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Travlin_Lite,

I think just the fact that you are questioning all of this is a clear sign that you are well on your way on this journey. I think it is so much a part of being raised female that that causes us, in general, to get all stuck in this need for approval and to see ourselves only in terms of our relationships.

I, personally, am involved in creative pursuits at an age when others may be thinking of retirement. Instead, I am thinking of a new career, new way of self-expression. I have been criticized in some ways for my dedication, my energy, my commitment, but I have learned that my own personal need to reach my own personal level of success far outweighs what others think. And, it is not just self expression, this is all tied into being the person I most want to be and behaving this way as well. This whole issue has caused estrangement from who I thought was my closest friend, and others, but I am continuing on in my vision and I will get there. Maybe they just have to not be part of my life anymore.

Paradoxically, I am now attracting different kinds of people into my life.....others who are ambitious and, I think, more healthy and evolved, at least more adventurous.

Its like I set the tone of stating this is who I am, this is who I am becoming, this is what I want to do, this is how I want to express myself, and this is who I want to be in this world. If you cannot accept who I am, then you have no business being in my life. So, I have lost some so-called friends, and I have gained new friends and supporters.

I have learned that we are here in this life to express ourselves in many ways and be the person we most want to be. I used to always think of me in terms of relationships and I did give up some of my dreams when I was involved with some guy, but looking back, that was doomed to fail for me. When we take a stand to be somebody, then we will naturally attract the right people.

I do not define myself as who I am in terms of my relationships, whether they are good, bad, abusive, or indifferent. I have already been down the road of obsessive "love" and attachment and it does not work, in fact, it is painful, I lose my self, and it just creates such an endless hole of need that can never be filled. In fact, it is interesting to read life stories here because so many of them only speak to who others are in terms of their relationships, not what they do for a living, what their interests are, how they spend their time, how they gives to the world, what their dreams, goals, and aspirations are.

As I get older, I am really getting that, for myself in mid-life, I have the ability to define myself as whoever I want to be and become my highest vision of myself. By doing this, I will probably even just fall into a good, healthy relationship. But, if I am all hung up on who likes what to do or do not do, then I will never completely be me, because someone is always going to disapprove of something somewhere.

OK, I've gone on for awhile. I never put all of this in words, and its very imperfect, but these are my thoughts on this topic. And, its fine with me if you don't agree with me. I can state that because what I wrote here in a true statement and conviction of what is true for me at this time in my life.

October 27, 2006
7:05 pm
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on my way
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gracenotes, thank you for sharing this about yourself....very beautifully put, and an inspiration to another mid-lifer here!

October 27, 2006
9:47 pm
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Travlin_lite
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Thank you truthBtold,ontheway & gracenotes I think all of your answers are well directed and really help me. Maybe the answer is really in "me". Like you gracenotes for the first time in my life I have taken a stand, being 55+ seems like I have taken way too long but then again I might never have gotten it. I thank you both truthBtold and ontheway for your honesty and compliments. I think you both are true to your own titles. It's like the old saying about going down the road and falling in the hole..well I have done that too many times and yet I have always climbed out but I want to take a different road for the rest of my life and don't want to go in the one that I've been buried in too many times to count. I really have to say that it was my confusion, misdirection, follies in the past that I went down that road. I just want the right directions from now on don't mind the curves or potholes just no more deep holes. It is too tough to climb out anymore..LOL

October 27, 2006
9:57 pm
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Travlin_lite
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Oh truthBtold..duh(freeze brain moment) the answers to your questions as far as my groups we don't have a CoDa in our town so I go to a woman's Al-Anon support work from the book "Courage to Heal" I also go to a Sexual Assault & Abuse support group once a week I am the elder..LOL..but still learning how it is the same even this day and age..I go to counseling once a week and I am working on a workbook and book "I Can't Get Over It" which I highly recommend for anyone that has been through any type of trauma, assault etc but do have a counselor available for it is indepth work. Then to top it I am in a Woman's Bible Study working through "Living Beyond Yourself" by Beth Morris which really gives one some introspective too..so that is what is on my plate..LOL and I am trying to write my personal story of the traumas of my life while going through this process of healing..Often though my physical challenges make me stop and rest even when I don't want too..

October 28, 2006
6:36 pm
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gracenotes
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Travlin_Lite,

Awesome, you are doing a lot of wonderful work here. I hope you are proud of all of this. Very insighful things you have written here.

I really think that this mid-life thing is kind of like a calling to get it right the second (or third or fourth or whatever time around). I just feel like such a different person than the person I was even two, three years ago. I have been through some trials and tribulations for sure, but I did step up to the plate and my life has never been better. And, it really is an insdie job. I went through most of my old traumas and unhealed stuff, hopefully for the last time around. Thought I had healed a lot, but much came back to revisit me. Think I am finaally done with all the major trauma stuff that I needed to work on for years. The journey has been absolutely worth it. Not easy, but worth it.

This one book I read about midlife even calls the decade of the 50's, The F_ _ _ You Fifties. The author just means that there's this new sense of self coming out and people in mid-life are just not willing to put up with things they used to. We've done a lot of the "shoulds" and "have to's" in our lives, whether its relationships, marriages, children, careers based on helping and nurturuing others, and all these things are wonderful, but there's this need to be someone and do something just "for me." All these physical changes happen too. The brain builds new connections at a rate as rapid as adolescence, as if it is ready to take in a lot of new information and changes. An article I read recently even suggested that the decline of estrogen may just naturally de-focus us from our usual nuruturing and parenting types or activities and "ask us" to explore different areas of life. Interesting stuff out there.

October 28, 2006
9:51 pm
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Travlin_lite
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gracenotes, again thank you it is sometimes hard for me to see my growth..or acknowledge it..sound oh so familiar but you are right in all that you say about moving on. One of my dreams since '89 was to be a full-time RV'er and I do believe that will happen now that I know these years to come are really about "me" and my choices. Of course my family is there but what a better way than to do a visit and then go on my way in exploring the world. I have already traveled much in my life. I just am not conventional..stuff and all. I love adventure being where there are like minded people and enjoying nature so soon will be able to follow the sun. Right now I know I have to continue my healing because I am in such a good place for that although I imagine I too will have to revisit what I learn..brain doesn't always remember. Thanks for sharing!! Hugzz

October 28, 2006
11:42 pm
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sis_who_got_help
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I used to look to others for my self-worth. One thing that my therapist had me do was write a love letter to myself. It sounds very corny and it was akward doing it, but when I had to see myself as someone I loved and truly cared about, it really came pouring out. After that, I didn't date anyone for a year. I would take myself out to the movies, take myself out to dinner, bought myself presents, bought myself flowers. I really got to know me without a boyfriend which was strange. I really liked who I was. I saw how I changed when I was in a relationship and didn't like those changes. It was a 3 year process, but I became my priority. Then it was like magic, I met someone who put me on a pedistool and who I could do the same for without degrading myself or lowering myself. It was fabulous. I hope you can take time to fall in love with you. It's a wonderful experience.

October 29, 2006
12:10 am
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newbee
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Travlin, You said you go to a bible study group, so you may believe in a devine god. If you separated a piece of pie from the rest of the apple pie, would it not still be apple pie? If god is devine and you come from the devine....You are devine as well.

October 29, 2006
6:33 pm
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Travlin_lite
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🙂 You all are absolutely right! By the way I do take myself to the movies etc. Sometimes though I do not give myself the approval I should..so I will write myself a love letter and see where it takes me. Thanks for sharing..newbee I know what you say is true..it's just sometimes it is hard to forgive yourself and I have to work on that too!! Thanks for all the input. It helps

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