I've got so many topics spinning in my head right now, so many words trying to come together in the voice of my inner narrator. This much is clear: I better start writing or I'll explode.
This morning, words were trying to form around my awareness that the savior and victim mindsets are two ends of the same continuum.
The victim says things like, “if only my boss were not such a jerk, I’d be successful,” “my partner is so cruel and it’s caused me so much pain,” “my family sucks and they’ve messed me up, that’s why I’m like this now,” “my landlord is so disrespectful and I don’t have any control over my home,” “they’ve had such a hard life, it’s not their fault how they’re behaving,” “my religion is crushing my spirit.”
The savior says things like, “if I were better, I’d be able to help them heal,” “it’s too hard for them to handle XYZ, but I know I can help by holding it for them,” “I’m so exhausted, but I know if I just dig deeper, I can help him,” “if only I’d been there, I could have healed her,” “I don’t understand, I do everything and they just don’t appreciate me at all.”
We all have a little of this in us. Some of us more than others. But why, you might wonder, is this a spectrum? Aren’t these two ways of being diametrically opposed? Not at all.
Here’s what they have in common: both have boundaries that are porous, both feel powerless to change their situation, both are drained of their lifeforce, both feel justified in their way of being, both are acting from a wound, rather than their higher self.
There are more complexities to this spectrum of course, but my discovery that they are interrelated has changed everything about how I see myself and how I coach my clients. As long as we’re operating from that spectrum of reality, we are stuck in a cycle of victim/savior exhaustion.
Exhaustion is the telltale sign that you're on this spectrum somewhere.
So, how do we step off that treadmill of misery?
As I’m writing this, I’m feeling like it’s a whole entire book, not some random blog article. I’m here to write my insides, right? Why am I espousing self help philosophy? Well, it turns out that this morning I am struggling to meditate because my mind is munching on the words to describe this continuum in a way that you can understand because it’s been such a revelation to me and my clients. I guess there’s a big part of my insides that are preoccupied with words. Go figure. I guess that's why I'm a writer.
I want to go back to my meditation now, so I’m going to keep this simple. Here’s how you step out of the victim/savior cycle.
Rejuvenate your exhausted self with whatever makes you feel good. Prioritize yourself for a hot minute, so you’re operating from a higher frequency.
Make a list of 3-5 things that make you feel joyful and go do them.
Now that you’re more resourced, dig into your subconscious to unearth the beliefs that are running your life. Why are you tolerating his/her/their behavior? What is keeping you from stepping out of your situation? Where in your childhood did that pattern of belief first emerge?
Now, take full responsibility for yourself and only yourself. Explore your personal boundaries and where they are porous.
Next, find tools of self-compassion to love your way to transformation. Love releases us from the energy locked up in those beliefs. Frustration, anger, impatience, they all just add fuel to that fire.
Alright, you’re now ready to choose. Choose what beliefs you want to live by.
Once you’ve chosen, it’s time to act. Take daily actions that come from your new beliefs.
As your actions begin to reinforce your new thoughts, they begin to build a new way of being.
There you go, simple! (LOL, sorry, just a little sarcasm this morning.)
Seriously, this is so nuanced and there are so many more words that want to clarify that I'll have to table the details for later. Now, back to meditate.