She was hit hard with the external manifestation of following suit/not speaking up/being a yes man/coddling/taking responsibility for others/playing the coach and mediator in all her interactions and shouldering the guilt and shame comes with being a misunderstood mother... that manifestation was showing in her health. And as a woman in a health based career She was losing joy and confidence in the very thing that was supposed to be moving her forward in life.
She wasn't sure WHAT was wrong. At the time of her enrollment in my program she was just sure of one thing...SHIT WASN'T ADDING UP. The passion, love, energy and devotion she poured out on a daily basis was NOT producing the life it was supposed to.
Her relationship with her fiance was neutral at the time. Things seemed copacetic and really the only area of her life not acting as a catalyst for her wanting to dive into her People Pleasing Addiction Recovery.
But in a house fire...every room will catch fire eventually if that fire is not found at the source and extinguished!
During her recovery these last 11months…
She and her fiance had their first big blow out. They overcame. And stronger than before.
Her mother’s illness advanced, but through the chemo, through the hospice, through the EMPATHY she found her strength and balance day in and day out and has worked through the sibling guilt and heaviness that People Pleasing brings when fully immersed in grief and empathy.
...Speaking of siblings and the strife that can come from family heartache...The “Don't clap back” module from my course became her mantra.
The practice of TRUE love I teach all of my clients, true love without side -eyes, without cattiness, without the false bravado of a dominant stance induced by OUR way of life and love being challenged or shook by another’s.
“I finally was able to extend GRACE to myself...FINALLY because i was straight up dying on all levels”
Right when I messaged her about hopping on a call to catch up with how her recovery has been treating her she said she was just sitting down to write a new chapter for her book.
(hello Passion Pulls!!! This woman didn’t know she even had a book INSIDE OF HER 11 months ago!)
This chapter would be called:
“You wanna confront People Pleasing? Try planning a Southern Wedding in 2 DAYS”
This is how much People Pleasing Addiction Recovery has changed her life...its featured as a staple methodology in her book!
But for all the reasons that chapter sounds hilarious and witty and full of spunk…
Its actually a very real, very heavy chronicling of one of the hardest things she’ll ever have to do.
And that’s to finalize, and bring into existence something so important and powerful for her...to be married in her Mother’s graces, before she passes away.
We all know the indiscriminate nature of illness...but some, like this woman, will feel the weight of that truth heavier than we could ever imagine with her Mother’s prognosis suddenly shortened.
She then shared with me how proud she was to be navigating this terrain.
Because her chapter title says it all, she’s absolutely right...this type of situation pulls on every single thread of People Pleasing Addiction.
GRIEVING : navigating the gifts of empathy while shunning the weight of its curse
FAMILY : Fear of judgment...bet you never thought someone could accuse her of stealing her mother's thunder...but oh yes, people exude their own fears and incapacity for handling their own emotions around grief very differently, and some deflect with misdirection.
RELATIONSHIP: Fear of rejection...and all those icky control goblins that come to the surface when we fear that we are pushing something on someone…”what could conjure me faster than a shotgun wedding cushioned with obligation”, says the fear goblin.
DEFAULT SETTINGS: keeping her head above the “just survive this...this too shall pass” survival water...navigating emotional comfort binge tactics (over drinking, over eating, under eating, drama seeking/creating diving into others drama)
Before her journey into recovery, ALL of the above concerns would have been VALID and reason for complete abandonment of what she was internally being pulled to do...for HER. for HER HEART. But now?
She is embracing her grief and all its beauty, pain all the lessons it has to teach her.
She weeps at the site of her own daughter, holding her cosmic knowledge and her own mother in her heart.
She works everyday to release the need to control other’s opinions of her, other’s actions, other’s processes... and find home, centered in the only thing she CAN control, her energy, her vibration, her love.
She pours love into her future husband and releases her responsibility over him. Allowing him to speak for himself, take care of his own process and responses.
And she celebrates all the wins...every time she stops eating when shes full, doesn’t reach for that extra glass of wine to ease the pain, works out even though cardio is SO HARD when you’re crying, and keeps her heart ROOTED in the here and now. Recognizing when drama is trying to pluck her away for some misguided toxic relief from what lies ahead.
When wrapping up our call she said “I just tell myself “YOURE GONNA GET THROUGH IT” “
I asked her to define what she meant by that and we agreed...
she’s absolutely going to get through it.
Not because she’s going to put on blinders and numb herself
But because she trusts her intuition like never before.
She has the power to confront EVERY nerve People Pleasing Addiction has and the CORE of their connection rooted in EMPATHY...and she’s DOING it. She’s LIVING as her authentic, passionate, respected and supported self.
Marie had reached a point where she didn’t even know how to IDENTIFY toxic people or relationships.
It had become such a problem that she was forced to remove herself from a very painful, toxic situation.
Immediately following that, someone she loved very much passed away.
There was so much unresolved hurt from her childhood that she was unable to process on her own, which led to repeating those patterns throughout her adulthood.
Traditional therapy wasn’t working…
"It seemed to be all talk and no action. I hit rock bottom. I left everything but my day job."
She couldn’t process the death of this toxic, yet beloved one and it was affecting everything in her world.
"I was apprehensive at first."
Not because she was scared to try yet another form of therapy that might not work…but because it meant doing something for HER.
"IT FELT SELF-INDULGENT to invest in myself, but I could feel out of all the different routes…something was different about this…something was drawing me to this program."
"Once I began my recovery I was able to identify abuse and when I had the compulsion to please someone, smooth things over, or apologize out of turn...It felt like I had a safety net and someone to talk to when those situations came up. The exercises were so hands-on and pro-active!"
"I stopped feeling so much anxiety because it stopped mattering to me what people who were not invested in my well-being thought!"
She began having more self-confidence. She moved on from hostile situations, she held her ground in confrontations, and she even became willing to take on new projects and learn new things she had previously been scared to approach.
"I'm not sure of a "nicer" way to say this lol…but...
I just don’t give a fuck what people think anymore!"
She stopped just going with the flow of Life and finally began to design her Life around what SHE WANTED.
The path she was going down before was fine… she was going to work for a government agency.
But she decided that wasn’t what she wanted after all…
So she began reaching into Parapsychology.
And after peeling back so many layers of what she was hiding behind, valuing other's opinions over her own happiness, she was able to connect with her own suppressed gifts and began a mentorship to develop her psychic medium abilities!
"I'm now living on my own, about to complete my doctorate.
I'm in an exciting period of development for my own business and studying to change my main career path into what excites me. Day to day, I advocate for myself. I am also helping other women do the same with the 12 step program for family and friends of alcoholics, Al-Anon."
"I never would have had the strength to stand for something I believed in if it stepped on the toes of others."
But her footing is so secure, and strong now. She's even been owning the "follow-up" for what she wants in life. (which is where a LOT of People Pleasers drop the ball!) Giving the responsibility of speaking up for themselves BACK to others, instead of assuming, like a mild-mannered mouse that she was a bother to them.
"There's a limited amount I can do some days as I'm still grieving the loss of someone so important to me and it's never the same when someone isn't physically there anymore. So I'm proud to be gentle with myself and a big part of that is having found my voice to say 'NO.'"
This is HER Life and Marie simply doesn't have any more time for anything that doesn't feel like a %100 YES!
Sherie Goes To Prison
She’d done the Therapy, she’d done the relationship counseling, she learned all the names for her husband’s moods, and the rationale for her reactions to them. Some days she had the energy to coach him through his tantrums, some days she couldn’t face his stonewalling.
She was a teacher at heart and in the classroom, to all of her children, the blood related, the adopted and the special needs. Sherie lived in a classroom of her own making, and she was content with that, it gave her joy to watch her patience and empathy transcribed into a lesson well absorbed and the smile on a gently enlightened face.
Sherie was too patient and smart for her own good. And her husband wasn’t a BAD man. Not bad enough to prove her efforts and coddling wrong at first.
All the convincing she had done to assure herself that if she could put a name to the beasty, there was no need to fear it. If she could learn the origin of the terror she could make sense of her reaction to it...all that had done was amplify her ability to navigate her emotions through logistics.
When her heart would break, be it a side-eye or a scoff under her husband’s breath, she would identify WHY he was behaving that way, she would make peace with that and hold the decision solely in her hands. But when you’ve silenced your inner child, when you’ve smothered your passion pulls and your soul’s needs...you lack all the options to make an educated decision.
In Sherie’s mind there were two options:
~ suck up her own reaction and try to connect with her husband and coach him through the issue at hand.
~accept that she lacked the energy to take him on, and retreat to the spare bedroom to cry.
Eventually that spare bedroom became the only option.
Day in, Day out. Sherie would lock herself in, cry it out, and return to life on the other side of that door.
But what kind life is that? Eventually those days in front of the door became filled with anxiety, self doubt, numbness and dread.
So there sherie lived, half in the numb vacuum of forcing a smile, and half in the prison of her spare bedroom.
It took Sherri, almost a year after her initial recovery sessions to finally start hearing those passion pulls again. To let go of the manufactured responsibility of coaching her lover through their relationship.
But she did it.
Without making him the bad man, without wearing the label of the woman who gave up...
After 12 months Sherie realized she didn’t need to convict someone else, to free herself from her prison.