Want out of the situations that have you are stuck, restrained, constrained, limited, held back? What to resolve the lack of FREEDOM you have with certain people and in certain relationships?
WhooooooooooooooooooHoooooooooo!! Then it is time for some FREEDOM Blocker Remover 101 work. Let’s Dig Deep and do a little work together to allow you to begin to distinguish your unique FREEDOM Blockers.
UPFRONT WARNING: This is going to be Get-Real exercise. You either have a commitment to your own Freedom or not and the basic requirement is that you be Really Honest with yourself. This is no time to sugar coat things between you and you (unless of course you’d like to continue to be stuck with that lack of FREEDOM you have in those situations or with those people).
The first step in freeing yourself up is to be able to even see and acknowledge that there may be some FREEDOM Blockers at work that are NOT necessarily what you may have suspected are zapping your FREEDOM from you! The best part of doing this work is: If you can see it you can move it!
Let’s get you started! Grab some paper (or if you are a geek like me then open a document or even more geeky … a spreadsheet) and let’s take some initial steps towards Freedom.
Step 1: Discover where you ARE missing FREEDOM
We are going to make a list of all the situations, people or things you may lack ANY freedom with. Start listing the key areas and people in your life.
Areas like: Romance, Health, Friends, Family, Finances, Business, Career, and/or Fun/Leisure/Recreation.
People like: your business partner, your romantic partner, your Mom, your Dad, your Siblings, each of your key friends, and/or your boss.
Go ahead now … List away!!!
Now, go back and next to each one put a percentage number. Use a scale of 0% – 100%. The rating works with 0% being Nothing Like you how you would like it to be – total lack of FREEDOM, 50% being about 50% of how you would like it to be – you have a little FREEDOM but nowhere near enough to have you experience it fully, 100% being off the hook fabulous, your Complete Dream Come True with CRAZY UNLEASHED FREEDOM in that area. Remember get REAL.
Don’t over think it, often the first number that comes to mind is the real one then we will rationalize something or think something like, “oh, it isn’t that bad.”, and that will have us negate the Real experience we have.
WHOOOOOOOHOOOOOOOOOOO!! You have a list of people and areas of your life with percentages now. We are going to work on anything that is not 100% (and I assert that 100% is not the top – that we can always create more Freedom but let’s at least congratulate yourself on those areas and people and put those 100%ers aside for now).
We are going to start with the lowest percentages first. UGH???? Wait … before you bail out, there is a method to my madness. When you work on the lowest percentages first then you discover lots right up front and the rest will be easier and easier. Grab some more paper and we are going to give each person or situation their own sheet (or for my fellow geeks open a new document for each or a new tab on your spreadsheet for each).
Step 2: Dig behind the Scenes
On your page for each area of your life or person in your life, write down what initially comes to mind when you think about that situation or person. Write down your beliefs, your thoughts, your feelings … Remember: Get REAL … you know you have a slew of thoughts about each thing or person.
Are you: Angry? Sad? Disappointed? Hopeless? Frustrated? Betrayed? Disrespected? Stressed?
If it is a person or there are people involved have, they: Betrayed you, abused you, tried to control you? manipulated you? neglected you?
Can you hear yourself thinking things like: All ____________ (men, women, people in authority, rich people, etc.) are ____________? This situation just keeps getting worse. I can’t win for losing.
Perhaps: I can’t seem to let go of it or change it, I fix one thing there and something else pops up?
Step 3: Dig Deeper Behind the Scenes
Next we are going to slice a little deeper with each person or situation. Now it is time to write on the page for each person and situation the stuff you think about YOU in relation to that person or situation. What are those automatic thoughts that just float up about YOU? How do you feel about YOU when you think about that situation or person? What are YOU thinking is general about situations or people when you think about this situation or person?
Put your head on loudspeaker … keep being honest with yourself.
Maybe it sounds something like: I Can’t win. I’m just Un-lovable. I don’t really deserve anymore because I am ______________. Others can but I can’t. I am just too stupid to make this work. I judge things poorly. I always attract these kinds of situations/people. I’ve never been good at ____________. I can’t ever handle __________ properly.
OK, PAUSE … if you have done all the work above PLEASEEEEE give yourself a hand! GREAT WORK! You have taken some Progressive steps in seeing the FREEDOM Blockers and how you experience those people and situations! Now Breathe a few deep breaths and let’s start looking at where they came from!
Step 4: Take a trip back in time
When was the last time you felt the way you described in Step 2 about this person or thing or any other person or thing? Was it always this way with the person or situation or has it just become that way? Put any memories you have down on each sheet of paper, document or spreadsheet tab. Look back in time for something similar you experienced with other people or similar situations. Keep going back in time – younger and younger. Keep allowing yourself to look for similar situations or even seemingly identical situations.
Perhaps several people in life have done the same thing to you (Have you dated that same person before with different names or faces or had other business partners or bosses who did the same thing to you? Maybe you have often not had enough money to handle things in life?). Trace it back to the youngest memory of that experience.
Particularly note the feelings and thoughts you had about YOU each time all the way back.
Maybe you remember things like these: My first romance in kindergarten ended when I was left for another girl who was prettier, and all the other kids made fun of me when they found out. Almost all my romantic relationships ended with my partner cheating on me with someone prettier or, later on, prettier and younger. I just can’t seem to hold onto anyone I love.
My best friend in 1st grade always embarrassing me in public and I started avoiding going anywhere with other kids where that may happen. Many of my friends over time have seemed to use me as the butt of their jokes. I can’t really trust anyone and don’t think I ever bring anything worthy to my friendships so that they value me.
Starting with my first job and then in job after job I was always underpaid and felt like a minion who wasn’t respected. I just never have what it takes to get anything better or to grow in any position.
Step 5: Do a Little Generational or Authority Digging
On your page for each person or situation now we are going to look for and write down any memories you may have of conversations your parents, siblings, early teachers, any adults or authorities who were around you when you were young may have had with each other in your presence or directly with you. Did any of them say things to you that are similar to what you think about yourself in any of the situations or with any of the people you have been reviewing as you have dug deeper in Step 2 and Step 3? What things did they say? Write down anything that you remember or that comes up for you … capture it all.
Maybe you remember things like this: My 2nd grade teacher said I was too loud (or bad at math, or couldn’t draw), My father said I wasn’t pretty (or I was a sissy, or not a man), My Grandmother warned me that relationships were trouble, My Mother said I would never be successful at anything, the Priest/Reverend/Minister/Rabbi always talked about us being sinners or less than, etc.
OK, PAUSE again! If you have been honest with yourself and done the real digging then the pieces of the puzzle are showing up on your pages. GREAT WORK! Now let’s Pull it all together! Now it’s time for the JUICY part!
Step 6: Count the FREEDOM Blocker Pattern Bounty
Look at and review all the notes you wrote down as you went back in time. There are probably some kind of “ah-ha”s by now. If you were diligent and real with yourself, you will see that many things you are bumping into now aren’t new.
You have been here before if not in identical situations with identical kinds of people at least in similar situations with similar people. You may even see recurring themes with various situations and people on your pages. And more than likely you have had many of the thoughts about people and situations you have had before in the past.
Oh, and most definitely you have had those thoughts about YOU before. Many from very early ages and certainly over and over and over!!
Believe it or not … It is GOOD NEWS to see all of this!
On a separate piece of paper (document, tab on a spreadsheet) make notes about those themes, similarities, repetitions. It may look something like this:
In situations I: Get scared I will lose something, Back off from voicing my opinions, Always take a behind the scenes position, Avoid anything that seems like conflict, Don’t request what I want/need, Can’t figure out what it takes to make it work, etc.
With people I: Get scared I will lose that person in my life, Never really express my opinion, Wait for them to leave me or dump me, Never set boundaries, Settle for things, Am always victimized, Am always giving so much and getting nothing in return, etc.
With myself I think I am: stupid, undeserving, un-lovable, not capable, too ______________, not ____________ enough, bad at __________, I never ___________ .
If you can see it in more than one situation or with more than one person then know there is a Freedom Blocking pattern at play. If you only see it in one situation or with one person then you may need to dig some more.
We, as humans, run off brain patterns, they get created then the pattern starts repeating itself and with each repetition we become more and more convinced it is “the truth”. We begin to act, think, feel and live as if it is the truth and then we become blocked from any other ways of acting, thinking, feeling or living.
WHAT IF NONE of the things you say about YOU is true? How would you then be able to think, feel, act and live?
I am not saying that things have not happened. I am not saying that those other people have nothing to do with anything … What I am saying is that the one thing we have control over is how WE think, view/perceive life/people, react to life/people, engage with life/people. Life happens and People do what they do (they are a product of their brain patterns too) … BUT, the things they may have said and the things they did that you interrupted and made a pattern out of is NOT the “TRUTH” and all of our ingrained patterns, based on those things dictate our experience of FREEDOM.
IF you got this far in this exercise and you have been doing the work each step along the way I am very happy for you! You can always go back and Dig Deeper!! There is so much to uncover for each of us. My only warning is not to get into processing yourself over and over as a new FREEDOM Blocker pattern. We can get stuck with anything. It is great to spot the patterns and it is also great to see that they have a source. It may be sufficient, once you do that some, to just know that any place you lack FREEDOM there is a FREEDOM Blocking pattern in place.
Back to my little theory: If you can see it you can move it! Hopefully now you can see it or at least enough of it that you are motivated to keep looking deeper! Is there work to do to rewire your Freedom Blocking patterns? Ohhhh, YES! Can it be done? Ohhhh, YES! Will it take some work? Ohhhh, YES! Would it be worth it to begin to FREE yourself up? Ohhhh, YES!
Now that you can see the Freedom Blocking patterns you have a choice. You can use this knowledge to begin creating new FREEDOM producing patterns or not. You are either willing or not.
Earlier I said, when talking about being honest with yourself, that you may like to continue to be stuck with that lack of FREEDOM you have had. Sounds ridiculous right? Who wants that? Well, it may be hard to believe but those brain patterns have a great built in protection system. Patterns like being patterns. It is all very hardwired in.
IF you are WILLING you can create new patterns. At least now, if you did the work above, you can see the patterns that have been running your show. You have a hint that your experience of FREEDOM is tied somehow to those patterns.
Unfortunately, if you didn’t do the work then this is all still a complete mystery to you and you will chalk your lack of FREEDOM up to something or someone outside of you and you will continue to be powerless to your patterns and all those people and things. I am hoping you do the work coz’ it gets you to the station where you can begin to hop on the Freedom Train!
PLEASE PAUSE ALL YOUR FREEDOM Blocking patterns for a moment!!! I have something really IMPORTANT to tell you that you may still not see or not know and that IF you can just hear it (like really hear it, take it in, try it on, consider it) then it may at least motivate or inspire you to continue moving towards FREEDOM. Ready????
THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH YOU!
You are NOT missing anything (i.e. the money-making gene, the smart gene, the lovable gene, the creative gene, etc.). There is simply some work to do to give you the access to all you actually have. You have everything it takes to have the life you want and to be FREE.
There is not even anything wrong with your BRAIN … it is actually doing it’s job perfectly … creating patterns, collecting data, categorizing things, memorizing things, repeating things … it is a good brain. It just has been working with faulty data. When you begin to choose new FREEDOM generating data to feed it then you can use all of its skills to build new FREEDOM producing patterns!
NEXT STOP on the FREEDOM TRAIN is to begin to create new FREEDOM patterns for yourself!!
As always, I love hearing from you. I invite your responses, comments, questions. Which FREEDOM Blocker brain patterns did you identify for yourself? How far back did you see each of them at work? Are some of them almost as old as you are? Feel free to share anything you see!
Stay tuned: I will be continuing to blog and share with you about various thoughts and solutions that will provide you with various levels of access to FREEDOM!