In last week’s post, we talked about those times in your life when you feel stuck and can’t find your way to get unstuck. This week, we want to share with you how the patterns you’ve learned early and over the course of your life can make you prone to feeling stuck.
In childhood every one of us needed love, support, interest, concern, protection, food, and education from our caregivers.
At the same time they were supposed to be nurturing us, our caregivers may have been tired, stressed, dealing with financial difficulties, struggling with addictions, juggling work schedules, caregiving their own parent, or feeling overwhelmed by all of their responsibilities. In addition, our caregivers had their own early experiences that shaped them and how they managed their parenting.
This complex weaving creates an environment where children first learn to navigate their worlds by navigating their families.
In those early years, and as we grow, we learn ways of relating to power, work, neighbors, family, politics, religion, our bodies, others’ bodies, similar types of people and people very different from us, and who we believe we are at our very core. We use those lessons to survive the normal messiness of early life and to navigate our movement into the world.
We develop the behaviors, mindsets, perspectives, and approaches to life that support us in our particular world. We then do these things over and over again in our lives until these patterns are so entrenched that they seem like truths.
yet it’s the few that don’t serve us
that we need to watch out for.
The pattern of relating warmly to family and friends, neighbors, and people on the sidewalk may serve you well in many instances. It becomes a problem when someone is treating you badly and you endure this treatment to ensure that you’re relating warmly to that person versus setting limits or getting away from them.
We see old patterns become problems in the workplace, too. When someone reports feeling stuck in their work, they’re often actually bumping into old personal belief patterns. These beliefs may leave them feeling that they can’t ask for a pay raise because that would be greedy or they can’t set a limit on someone who is always talking to them at their desk because that would be disrespectful or they can’t look for a new job because this job is safe.
Spend a bit of time this week thinking about your patterns. Which ones still serve you and which ones don’t?
When you find yourself feeling stuck, ask yourself if you’re struggling because of a pattern or story you’ve come to believe is a truth. Your answer may free you up to move forward.
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