Welcome to my second publication of Living With Gusto!
I'm Lori Little, MA, Psychotherapist, and as you may or may not know, trauma recovery is one of my specialties.
To embark on this journey, I thought I would explore the idea of independence. What does it mean to be free?
Since Independence Day came and went I have been contemplating this thought. What does it mean then to be free, truly free? We live in a free country, but are we free? The answer I keep coming back to is No. No, not if we are not free of the prisons we create through our own emotions of fear, shame, blame, anger, envy, anxiety, and depression. Every negative emotion out there that we create and choose to labor in. Who then has the power of emancipation? YOU! No one but you has the power over you or your emotional freedom. So the question remains, who have you given it to, because it always belongs to you.
Perhaps you gave it to your boss, parents, significant other, someone who abused or mistreated you? How does it happen that we choose to allow others to rule over our emotions?
Could it be as easy as changing your perception of situations? I think it is. The way you choose to view your experiences creates your reality. That is psychotherapy in a nut shell. Change your perception and change your life! You have the power to choose what you spend your time thinking about, you have the power to reclaim your inner solace.
Think about this, could it be that your boss treats everyone poorly and not just you? Therefore it is about who he/she is and not about who you are. So then why make it about you? Why pick up his/her stuff and put it in your pockets and start carrying it around with you and more importantly start changing who you are, because how you feel, is you. If you change how you feel then you change you and do you want to change who you are, because of who they are? Not likely, but it happens all too often!
This is not to make light of any experience anyone has had. I have heard many accounts of abuse and none of them were due to who they were, it was due to who the perpetrator was. Yes, it hurts and yes, it takes time to heal and yes, it was an awful, to put it mildly, experience, but do you really want to define who you are and your life choices due to who they are?
No, I would have to say No. No, I don't believe anyone really wants to choose to do that, no one that I have met anyway, but some people get trapped in the cycle and don't know how they got there and how to get out. Most of the time those patterns of thinking come into existence during childhood, when children are egocentric by the very nature of their brain development and they feel everything occurs because of them, they believe they are the cause of everything that happens in their lives and that consciousness set sticks around in adulthood if it is not challenged and redefined.
Yes the bad situation happened to you. Yes they treated you poorly, but perhaps you could contemplate this thought.....It was not about you, it was about them. You unfortunately got caught in their dysfunction, but it is their dysfunction and not yours, so empty your pockets, it does not belong to you. You have the freedom to do so. You have the freedom to choose your thoughts, feelings, goals, and aspirations. No one stops you, but you. Recognizing this fact and redefining the situations that keep you feeling shame, blame, hurt, fear, anxiety, anger, depression, and envy is the true key to independence and freedom. The freedom of choice now takes on a much greater meaning. We may live in a free country, but how much good is that if you are imprisoning yourself with the feelings you choose to feel? Is that freedom?
If your feeling like a prisoner of your emotions and you can't seem to be able to redefine the events of your life that have contributed to these negative emotions.
Remember, there are professionals out there that can help you see things that you may not be able to see on your own right now. Noticing these distorted beliefs will allow you to do the redefining work in order to gain your emotional independence. Are you ready to truly be FREE?
I wish you personal freedom, peace and all the happiness you deserve!
I hope this issue of Living With Gusto! finds you well!
To contact Lori Little, MA, Psychotherapist to answer any questions you may have or to schedule an appointment call 248-722-2653 or
Living With GUSTO! E-Zine compliments of Lori Little,MA, Psychotherapist and Full Circle Behavioral Health,PC.
I hope you enjoyed this month's issue. Until next month when more pertinent mental health issues will be discussed!
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