Dad was forty-three and mum thirty-six when they married. I was their third child so Dad was getting on in years when I came along.
As a little kid I played schoolboy rugby on a Saturday. In all the time I played I only remember Dad coming to watch me once. Looking back, it’s not hard to see Dad’s love was expressed in how hard he worked trying to provide for us all. However, children are good absorbers of information, but poor interpreters of that information and can easily come to wrong conclusions about themselves and their world.
For me, the conclusion I came to, since Dad – the ‘big’ person in my life – wasn’t interested in watching me play rugby, was that I must be insignificant and unimportant. I guess it’s not hard to see how a little kid could come to that conclusion.
I lived out of that belief for a long time, reinforcing the thinking along the way with other experiences that pressed my ‘I’m insignificant button’. Our emotional hurts are a bit like having a painful ingrown toenail … it feels like everyone just wants to stand on it, and when they do it hurts like hell.
Just as our physical body has pain sensors indicating areas needing attention, we also have emotional pain sensors to indicate hurts needing healing. For me, as I grew into my teens I discovered that alcohol dulled that emotional pain.
Believing I was insignificant, I automatically thought people weren’t really interested in me, but, after a few beers I forgot that and became quite a different person, which as you might imagine caused its own set of issues. As many of us have learned, alcohol doesn’t solve problems; it irrigates them.
As I got older, I realised that neither the drink nor the passing of time was helping, so I decided to go on a search to see if there was anything that might.
It was through this I came to understand ‘time’ alone doesn’t heal, ‘truth’ does. In fact, the saying, “when the river runs low the rocks begin to show” indicates that the passing of time doesn’t actually heal issues – it simply reveals them.
I discovered that lasting healing was found by getting beneath the presenting problem and dealing with the power source behind it.
Just like a stove element on high causes the water in the pot to bubble over, so too our stink beliefs bring heat into our lives causing stink behaviour, bubbling over as anger, anxiety, withdrawal, and the like.
Because we were all once children, we are all susceptible to having formed beliefs about ourselves and our world that may still be ‘infecting’ us. And until these are dealt with, the proverbial element stays on high.
In my search for answers I found tools and insights that truly helped me to turn my element down.
I am now a trained counsellor with a private practice. Track me down if you think I might be able to support you in your search to turn down your element.