When Enough is Enough…
This week we held another of our 3 Day Masterclasses, here in Yorkshire at my place. The delegates were all here to find their Why.
What I found interesting was that every time we have an event there are some common themes. Namely that people don’t feel good enough. They believe that they don’t know enough. And they also think they don’t have enough time or money to make the changes they would like to see in their lives.
But when is enough, enough?
All of the above are of course beliefs. Now, beliefs are generally formed in two ways, and mostly in childhood. They have either developed because of our experiences, inferences and deductions, or by accepting what others tell us to be true.
So, what do I mean by experiences, inferences and deductions?
Well – as a child everything is new isn’t it? And our brains like order. So, when stuff happens to us we give it a meaning and class it in some way. At a simple level, as a baby when we are hungry, or uncomfortable, or lonely, or thirsty – we cry. After a while we learn that whenever we cry someone comes (hopefully). And so we learn to cry when we want someone to come.
Not only that – but later – when we discover language and can file things away we start to create meaning around stuff that happens. For example, you cry, your Mum comes, therefore your Mum loves you.
The problem is that the meaning we put on things is not always the right one.
And we forget as adults to explain things to kids – because we forget what it was like to be a kid. We assume that they understand things that they really don’t.
I remember a friend of mine telling me about when she was 4 and her Mum or Dad explained to her that she was going to get a baby brother or sister. They expected she would be excited as they were. But actually she felt hurt and unloved. She interpreted their super excitedness about the new baby to mean that she was not enough for them. They didn’t really love her and needed a new baby to love.
And when the baby was born and it was a boy it got worse. She could sense everyone’s excitement but she was not allowed to see the baby – or her Mum. Therefore, she again interpreted as – the baby boy was more important and more loved than her. So she learned to repress her emotions and always be a good girl, so she might get some love. She knew she had to “look after” her brother and felt that to be loved she had to be seen to be doing that. Even though she resented him and found him annoying – when he finally came home.
What she didn’t know is that the energy she was picking up on – excitement – is the exact same energy as fear. There were complications with the pregnancy and with her mothers mental health. Everyone (all the adults) were terribly scared about what might happen.
And then her mother was kept in hospital for a long time, and her brother was looked after in a Salvation Army home. And that was the real reason why she couldn’t see them both. You can imagine what damage this long held belief did, not only as a child but well into adulthood.
In other cases, the cause of the problem can be rather more obvious.
A parent who tells a child they are stupid, or lazy, or will never amount to anything. A parent or carer who physically or in any other way, abuses a child. A harsh word from a teacher, a grandparent, an aunty. That can all have a massive impact.
The parents own limiting beliefs can be passed on. Perhaps the parents have a “don’t get above your station” mentality that then limits their child’s ability to dream of bigger things. Maybe there is a beliefs about “a woman’s place”, which limits options or makes a child feel bad if they choose to put their career first later as an adult.
All sorts of limiting and just plain unhelpful beliefs can be passed from generation to generation “Oh, us Smith’s have never been good at….lucky in….sporty….”(fill in your own).
And it is due to these limiting beliefs instilled in childhood, that our delegates come along to the Find Your Why Foundation to find their “Why”.
We help you look at your why in two ways.
Firstly, why ARE you where you are right now? What are your current beliefs? Which serve you, and which do not?
Secondly, we look at your purpose. What gets you out of bed? Perhaps you don’t know. Maybe you just get out of bed to pay the bills? We help you find your REAL purpose.
It is timely to talk about purpose in mental health week. Studies have shown that people with strong (positive) beliefs and a sense of purpose, handle the ups and downs of life better. According to Psychology Today which references research published in the Journal of Social Service Research, people who create a sense of purpose and meaning in their lives, and seek to find and experience their “true self,” experience fewer symptoms of depression and anxiety.
The study looked at the impact of having a sense of meaning and purpose within treatment programs for addiction, in particular. It found that, in that population, more symptoms of emotional disorders were found among those who lacked a sense of meaning in their lives.
That makes complete sense to me, as I have frequently seen the opposite, i.e. people who find their why feel so much better about themselves and their lives.
If you are interested in finding out more about our masterclasses, email me on firstname.lastname@example.org