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It’s Time to Stop Abdicating and Own Your Amazement

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If you’d like to learn how to stop playing small so you can get anything you want out of life, sign up for the free 90-Day Master Class hosted by the founder of Addicted2Success.com, Joel Brown.


My favorite pastime is to sit outside a cafe, coffee in hand, watching people move, interact, and be with themselves. It is also what I do for a living. I am a listener, watcher, and instigator. My children know that I can easily strike up a deep conversation with a complete stranger and know the person’s full life story in less than 20 minutes. My children marvel at how I know a waitress at a favorite restaurant or barista at a local coffee shop. 

I have a lot of pet peeves, and one of them is when people play small. I could tell you dozens of stories of witnessing kids as young as 5 and humans as old as 92 who abdicate the brilliance, beauty, and amazement of their own beings. I’ve taken up the cause and dedicate my life to breaking that pattern.

“There is no passion to be found playing small – in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.” – Nelson Mandela

The truth about humility

Decades ago, I heard the best definition of humility. True humility is to be no more and no less than that which you are in your own right. Whether it is instinctive or learned, most of us know how to exist being “no more.” Whether it is based on the need for safety, security, or one million other reasons, playing small or playing it safe is woven into the fabric of most of our beings. Being “no less” is where the juicy parts flow. 

Take a moment, and let’s do a personal assessment together. Find a quiet space where you can be in a comfortable position. Bring intentionality into your body. If you are sitting, place the soles of your feet on the floor about hips distance apart. Feel the soles of your feet underneath you and feel the ground underneath the soles of your feet. 

Lift through the top of your head, not creating strain but intentionally stretch. Bring the palms of your hands to your knees or thighs and close your eyes or leave them open. If you leave them open, allow them to gaze softly down the bridge of your nose about three feet in front of you. Afterwards, make sure to breathe. Matter of fact, take a few breath cycles of breathing in and breathing out, as you do that say to yourself, “Breathing in I know that I am breathing in, Breathing out I know that I am breathing out.” 

Repeat those words with each cycle, perhaps making them shorter as you keep on with the breathing, “Breathing in, Breathing out,” or even “In, Out.” 

Notice your body. Allow yourself to be aware of how your body feels when you’re breathing. When you begin feeling more present in the moment, take an even deeper breath and ask yourself, “How do I want to show up in life?” It is okay if thoughts and your mental being want to answer. Also listen for deeper wisdom coming from your heart and body.

If you have extra time, reflect on where you have abdicated, sold yourself short, and played small. My hope for you in these moments is that those critical inner spaces don’t override just allowing yourself to be informed, try to hold off judgement and criticism. Take some longer breaths if you feel those sensations creeping into your being.

“If you hear a voice within you say ‘you cannot paint,’ then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced.” – Van Gogh 

For example, I abdicated several spaces in my life. Professionally, I allowed others to always be the “expert.” When I stepped into the space of owning my own strengths, I allowed myself to be no less. I set my sights on what I wanted to accomplish, took the necessary steps, and I’m reaching high for my own dreams and goals

What’s the very next step you can take? What is one thing you could do today, this week, or this quarter? Let yourself be no less than who you really are. Be more intentional about feeling present in your body and in the now. Release regret, acknowledge if there is any fear or doubt, and step forward.

Lastly, take a seat. Bring the backs of your hands to the tops of your knees. I want you to say “I am an AMAZEMENT,” two times in a regular voice, two times in a whisper, one time quietly to yourself, and one time as loud as you want. Bring your thumb across the pad of each finger as you speak the words and press down. Thumb to index finger, “I.” Thumb to middle finger, “AM.” Thumb to ring finger, “AN.” Thumb to pinky finger, “AMAZEMENT.” And repeat. Do this for the next couple weeks, notice the difference. Live and thrive in the knowledge of your own competency, your own amazement, be no less!

Let us know in the comments what you think once you try the technique described above!

Elle Miller is a trauma-informed C-IAYT yoga therapist and Body Advocate working to bring transformation into the workplace. Her speciality is  finding spaces that shift anxiety and burn out, zoom fatigue and disconnection. She created The Listening Project as a means to show  how subversive the very act of learning how to listen can become. Connect with her at Elle@LivingMangaliso.com to schedule your personal session or to find out more about our corporate offerings.

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Life

The Imbalanced Problem with Work/Life Balance

Balancing is for your checkbook, gymnastics, and nutrition; not for your people’s work/life ratio.

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Balance…it requires an equal distribution of value between two or more subjects to maintain steady composure and equitable proportionality. (more…)

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How to Find the Courage to Start New

Change is scary, but it’s a normal part of life.

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It’s 2023, a new year, new you, right? But how do we start over? How do we make the changes in our lives that we crave so much to see?  (more…)

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Failing is More Important Than Succeeding

Failure is an integral part of life as life is incomplete without failures.

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People often consider failure a stigma.  Society often doesn’t respect the people who failed and avoids and criticizes their actions. Failure is an integral part of life as life is incomplete without failures. Not to have endeavored is worse than failing in life as at some stage of your life you regret not having tried in your life.  (more…)

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5 Indicators of Unresolved Attachment Trauma

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Emotional Attachment Trauma

Trauma caused during specific stages of a child’s development, known as attachment trauma, can have lasting effects on a person’s sense of safety, security, predictability, and trust. This type of trauma is often the result of abuse, neglect, or inconsistent care from a primary caregiver.

Individuals who have not fully processed attachment trauma may display similar patterns of behavior and physical or psychological symptoms that negatively impact their adult lives, including the choices they make in relationships and business.

Unfortunately, many people may not even be aware that they are struggling with trauma. Research estimates that 6% of the population will experience PTSD in their lifetime, with a majority of males and females having experienced significant trauma.

Unresolved attachment trauma can significantly impair the overall quality of a person’s life, including their ability to form healthy relationships and make positive choices for themselves. One well-known effect of unhealed attachment trauma is the compulsion to repeat past wounds by unconsciously selecting romantic partners who trigger their developmental trauma.

However, there are other less recognized but equally detrimental signs of unprocessed developmental trauma.

 

Five possible indications of unresolved attachment trauma are:

 

1.  Unconscious Sabotage

Self-sabotage is a common pattern among individuals with unprocessed attachment trauma. This cycle often begins with hurting others, which is then followed by hurting oneself. It is also common for those with attachment trauma to have heightened emotional sensitivity, which can trigger this cycle.

This pattern can manifest in lashing out, shutting down, or impulsive behavior that leads to feelings of guilt, shame, and self-loathing.

Many people with attachment trauma are not aware of their wounds and operate on survival mode, unconsciously testing or challenging the emotional investment of those around them, and pushing them away out of self-preservation and fear of abandonment.

This can lead to a pattern of making poor choices for themselves based on impulsivity.

 

2. Persistent Pain

 
Chronic pain is a common symptom that can stem from early trauma. Studies have shown a connection between physical conditions such as fibromyalgia, headaches, gastrointestinal issues, insomnia, muscle aches, back pain, chest pain, and chronic fatigue with the aftermath of chronic developmental trauma, particularly physical abuse.
 
Research has found that individuals with insecure attachment styles, such as anxious, avoidant, or disorganized, have a higher incidence of somatic symptoms and a history of physical and emotional abuse in childhood compared to those with a secure attachment style.
 
 

3. Behaviors That Block Out Trauma

 
Trauma blocking practises are used to avoid the pain and memories connected with traumatic events.
 
Emotional numbing, avoidance, and escape via briefly pleasurable activities that distract from terrible memories or suffering are common examples. Unfortunately, this escape habit stops people from successfully processing and recovering from their trauma.
 
Furthermore, when the pain resurfaces, more and more diversions are necessary to continue ignoring it. This can be seen in compulsive behaviours such as drug or alcohol addiction, emotional eating, numbing oneself through relationships, workaholism, excessive or dangerous exercise routines, compulsive internet or technology use, or any other compulsive behaviour used to distract yoursef from intrusive thoughts and emotions.
 
These actions have the potential to prolong a cycle of avoidance and repression, preventing persons from healing and progressing.
 

4. A strong need for control

 
It’s understandable that some people may struggle with control issues in their adult lives, especially if they felt helpless or vulnerable during their childhood.
 
This can happen if someone had an overbearing caregiver who didn’t let them make their own choices, expected too much from them, or didn’t take care of them properly. As adults, they might try to control everything in their life to feel more in control and less anxious or scared. This might be because they didn’t feel like they had control over their life when they were a child.
 
It’s important to remember that everyone’s experiences are different and it’s okay to seek help if you’re struggling with control issues.
 
 

5. Psychological Symptoms That Are Not Explained

 
Individuals with a history of developmental trauma may experience a range of psychological symptoms, including obsessive-compulsive behavior, intense mood swings, irritability, anger, depression, emotional numbing, or severe anxiety.
 
These symptoms can vary in intensity and may occur intermittently throughout the day. People with this type of trauma may attempt to “distract” themselves from these symptoms by denying or rationalizing them, or may resort to substance abuse or behavioral addictions as coping mechanisms. This can be a maladaptive way of trying to numb their symptoms.
 
 

What to do next if you’re suffering from emotional attachment trauma?

 
Everyone’s experience of healing from trauma is unique. It’s important to be aware of whether you have experienced childhood developmental trauma and how it may be affecting your relationships as an adult. Sometimes, the effects of trauma can be overwhelming and we may try to push them away or avoid them.
 
If you notice that you’re engaging in these behaviors, it’s important to seek help from a trauma therapist who can support you on your healing journey. Remember, you’re not alone and it’s never too late to start healing.
 

There are several ways that people can work to overcome emotional attachment trauma:

  1. Therapy: One of the most effective ways to overcome emotional attachment trauma is through therapy. A therapist can help you process your experiences, understand the impact of your trauma on your life, and develop coping strategies to manage symptoms.
  2. Support groups: Joining a support group of people who have had similar experiences can be a great way to find validation, empathy, and a sense of community.
  3. Mindfulness practices: Mindfulness practices such as meditation, pilates, prayer time with God or journaling can help you become more aware of your thoughts, emotions, and physical sensations, and develop a sense of spiritual connection and self-regulation.
  4. Trauma-focused cognitive-behavioral therapy (TF-CBT): This is a type of therapy that is specifically designed to help individuals process and recover from traumatic events.
  5. Building a safety net: Building a support system of people you trust, who are there for you when you need them, can help you feel more secure and safe in your life.

It’s important to remember that healing from emotional attachment trauma is a process and it may take time. It’s also important to find a therapist who is experienced in treating trauma, who you feel comfortable talking with, and who can help you develop a personalized treatment plan.

 
 
If you desire to work with me on healing your wounds and unlocking the aspects of you that were never realized so you can achieve more success in your life then head over to awebliss.com and join my weekly LIVE online mentorship calls.
 
 
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