Why can’t we change?

Over the last few months I have embarked on learning about new complementary therapies looking for new ways to grow and change.  I’ve been listening to Louise L Hay talk about how I can heal my life and Nick Ortner is teaching me about EFT through his book “The Tapping Solution“.  I’ve endeavoured to go back to using the MIR Method and I’ve been working with the Bach Remedies.  I am even working through a course to become a colour therapist all while learning tai chi.  I’m loving every moment of it and it is all so deeply interesting and enlightening; but I still feel stuck.  Why is this?

So many of us try to improve our lives. We become aware of wounds and negative beliefs that we know are holding us back and there is a booming industry of people wanting to share their ideas on how we can change these.  From the weird to the wonderful there truly is something for everyone; and yet we are still stuck.  We spend hundreds, if not thousands of pounds trying the next thing only to find that we are still in the same place.  Why is this?

I started pondering this the other day, trying to work out why, even though I set a reminder on my computer at work to remind me to do the MIR Method, and it only takes a couple of minutes, I dismiss it every time it comes up without doing it.  Why, with all my Bach training and access to the full set of remedies do I not take them?

It’s because, in reality, I am scared to change, and I don’t think I am alone in this.

Think about your problems for a moment.  Maybe you hate your job.  Maybe you live with constant pain or anxiety.  Are you in an abusive relationship or unemployed trying to find a job?  Really think about your problems.

Now imagine a door in front of you.  The other side of it is a life without those problems.  Imagine what that life would look like.  Make that picture real in your mind.

Now see yourself opening the door and stepping into that life.  Is it easy?  Do you tear the door open and rush in, or do you hesitate, even just a little bit?

Thinking about this reminds me of a session I had with a counsellor when I was in my early 20s.  I was in a relationship that wasn’t working and at the time I was blaming that on the trauma I experienced in my first relationship.  I had been 17 when I started seeing my first boyfriend (let’s call him T) and I was very naive and easily manipulated.  T made the most of my weakness and I spent 2 years in his thrall.  I was left deeply scarred and scared and was seeing this counsellor to heal the wounds in the hope of moving forward.

I had been seeing him for a few weeks, telling him my story about how badly I had been treated, tearing my heart out every time and this day he asked me to do one simple task for him.  He asked me to repeat some words.  Those words were “I let go of everything T did to me”.  That was it, that was all he wanted me to say.

It felt like it took me an age to say it.  I sat there sobbing harder than ever before because in that moment I realised that if I said those words I could no longer hang my identity on those wounds.  I could no longer blame T for making me who I am.  I realised I would have to take responsibility for my own life and finally, I would have to move forward.  I wouldn’t be “T’s ex who was like this because he treated her so badly” I would be me; responsible for who I am.

After a while I managed to say it and it felt like a weight had been lifted.  I was free from him in that moment.  I had made more progress in making that statement than I had in weeks of therapy, but it is one of the hardest things I have ever done in my life.  In that moment I had been faced with a choice; stay in my world of misery, stuck and never moving forward, or step through the door into a life where I could start to take control of my life.

So often we are afraid of success.  We are comfortable in the place where we are, no matter how painful it is.  We stay stuck because stuck is safe. We know how stuck works.  We can complain to our friends about our problems and get the sympathy we want. We can blame our lack of progress on the treatment we have received or the problems with live with.

Truly putting effort into working on new ways to feel better risks our life becoming completely different and we don’t know how that works.  We will have to be brave and face new situations.  Finding healing means we will be a different person and we don’t know who that is.

So next time, before you embark on another diet, a new type of complementary therapy or open a new self help book ask yourself, do you really want to become a different person?  Are you ready to find out what the new you looks like and the new challenges that come with it?  If the answer is no that is what you need to work on first rather than what you thought was most important to you.

I am hoping to use the new EFT techniques I am learning at the moment to work on this aspect…. but if I am successful I will then have accept that I am in charge of my life and I really can change things.  Time to try and make that leap again, I wonder if I am up to the task?  Why don’t we try and leap together, holding hands!

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