As a child, I was fearful day in and day out for well over 24 years living with my biological family. I learned to exist in this feeling of fear. This fear-filled place became familiar and I learned how to exist in it. When I left my biological home after marriage, it was new and exciting. However, I eventually became aware of the habits I created around my fear. Even though I was a mature adult, I embodied a child-like sense of fear.
Life takes it dips and turns and I found myself in psychotherapy after my second daughter was born with a terminal illness. Psychotherapy became part of my life as I learned to face the grim prospects of my daughter’s illness. I was expecting to address my fears of losing a child, but instead I started on a path understanding my level of fear as a child. What unfolded was years of uncovering traumas and disappointments as a child. I certainly didn’t want to go there, and I hadn’t even remembered the experiences. But I couldn’t go forward with my present life unless I understood where I was coming from. I persisted through therapy because I was so unhappy. I made the decision to keep learning and feeling.
Our brains do not change habits easily. In fact, I’m convinced my brain feels more threatened when I decide to change a habit. I recently became aware of my constant worrying about the scarcity of money and let the worry manifest itself to a point it’s always on my mind, always in the background. My thought process is if I examine every aspect of my money problems, look at it from every possible angle and figure out what my next steps are from every angle, I will be forewarned and forearmed to handle what comes up.
This is hard work and I muscle through the experience until I reach my wit’s end and I pop (have a meltdown). Sometimes this takes days. I’m really back where I started from, nothing has changed except my stress level. And in essence, I’ve been surviving with scarcity of money for years and I problem solve ways to deal with it.
So, I’ve instituted a new plan. I call it t-i-o (Tio). When I start to perseverate over money, I interrupt myself and say T-I-O. TURN IT OVER. Give the problem away to my higher power or to God or however you define your wisdom. TIO TIO. I did this for a day. At the end of the day, I noticed I had stopped worrying about money. In fact, I was surprised how quiet my mind was. It felt weird. I felt lost. I felt I was in a strange place and didn’t know what to do with all the room in my mind.
I became my own interventionist! Awareness is the key to discovering what isn’t working. Then defining the thing that’s driving me batty. Create a remedy and execute it. You can do this too. Think about it. It’s a fascinating thought that we can be the solution to all our problems. We really are that powerful!
The way you think and react to challenges may very well be instilled in you through conditioning as a child. What role models did you have in your life? Who was the adult in your life that most influenced you in either a good or bad way? As we move deeper into the 21st century, paradigms are changing. What worked years ago doesn’t work well now. Habits, dreams and aspirations change as we age. Do you know what you want in life? Life is a classroom of joys and challenges. We grow, learn, face challenges and learn, grow, learn and the years move on. Erosion is part of life. Growth is part of life.
As we step into more maturity, what feeds us changes. Sometimes we hang onto what has pleased us in the past ignoring how it’s not feeding us in the present. Sometimes we deny ourselves the direction that leads to peace and ease and keep following the perpetual prize at the end of the journey, and this journey though familiar is riddled with rocks and obstacles. Sometimes we follow others so we don’t have to figure out what we want.
All of our habits both good and bad are within. It’s up to us to examine what is working and what is not based on our heart’s yearning. It’s so easy to pay money to someone who will help us change, but the bottom line is the power is within us to make changes. We all want to be loved, accepted, happy and surrounded by family/community, and we want to find success however we define it. Habits can be part of our everyday routine.
You can be your own interventionist! Awareness is the key to discovering what isn’t working. Then defining the thing that’s driving you batty. Create a remedy and execute it. You can do this. Think about it. It’s a fascinating thought that we can be the solution to all our problems. We really are that powerful!