I’ve been writing a lot on worthiness because when you connect to the totally unearned, grace gift of worthiness, it divinely solves so many of the problems we face…one of which is perfectionism.
Brene Brown perfectly defined perfectionism as a 20-ton shield we use to protect ourselves from being judged, particularly in areas we feel vulnerable to shame and feeling “not enough.”
Once you connect the dots that “you were born worthy” and nothing can or ever will change that truth, it equips you with the courage to be imperfect, which is the bravery to be human.
Once you’re human, you’re relatable, available and dare I say, lovable. Then, and only then are you participating in and connected to the perfectly imperfect nature of reality.
“You are imperfect and you are wired for struggle but you are worthy of love and belonging.” Brene Brown
When Bill Wilson developed what would later become the 12-Step Program or Alcoholics Anonymous, even though his program was working for himself, keeping him free from his addiction to alcohol, it was not so well received by others.
He would work extensively with his “friends” to help them break the bonds of alcoholism, only to have them fall back into familiar patterns, time and again.
Though many would have seen this initiative as a failure, Bill decided to measure success by his desire and willingness to share it, not by whether it was well received or not.
This highlights such a crucial consideration in the change process that effort is so much more important than the outcome. Effort, in fact, was within his control, while the outcome was not and he kept focused on action instead of reaction—brilliant!
Bill’s growth mentality led to one of the greatest spiritual contributions our society has ever known all because he believed he was worthy of the effort it took to create a different way forward.
“To the world you may be one person but to one person, you may be the world.” Bill Wilson
If you’ve experienced anxiety, then experientially, you understand what a feedback loop is. Knowing how they work can help you reduce pain and emotional suffering.
Your boss lays into you at work–>What an a$#@ole–>anger, shame, spite
The activating event is out of your control—it’s life. Your thoughts are mostly automatic though you can choose to reframe the experience you just had. Your emotions are a response relative to how you interpret the event.
There are two sides to emotions: feelings and sensations. The feelings of anger, shame and spite trigger the stress response; leading to a rapid heart rate, shallow breathing and increased tension. The physiological response to stress then triggers additional protective thoughts, thus intensifying the stress response and before you know it, you’re inside of a full-blow anxiety attack and/or all out rage.
The key here is not to address the anxiety or even the anger, those just the symptoms. The key here is to inject your self into the feedback loop. The first and most important step is to realize you’re in the middle of this cognitive-emotional whirlwind. Then, pause, step back and rather than trying to interpret the event, become an observer of your mind and you may notice: I’m offended and angry because my boss is having a bad day. This level of perspective is what starts to break the cycle and lessen its intensity.
Last, ask: Which part of me is upset…my True Self or my false self? At this point, the answer is clear that the insecure part of you is hurt and your True nature, which is largely unoffendable is unscathed and still living inside of peace. Believe it or not, your True Self has the courage and substance to practice empathy and extend passion to its “boss.”
Albert Einstein said: “No problem can be solved from the consciousness that created it.” In other words, your false self cannot solve its own problems…only a True change of consciousness is equipped to do that.