Do You Really WANT Responsibility for Your Feelings?By Dr. Margaret Paul
April 30, 2018
Deciding that you WANT responsibility for yourself and your feelings is one of the biggest changes you can make in your life.
Miles was stuck. His financial situation was scary and there was constant conflict with his wife and two children. He was in deep despair and he felt angry and very much a victim of life.
"Miles," I asked, "Do you WANT to take responsibility for being the one causing all of this? Do you want responsibility for causing your despair?"
"Of course," he said.
"Miles, please don't give me the 'right' answer. Go inside and see if you REALLY do WANT responsibility for yourself and your feelings."
Miles paused a minute, and then quietly said, "No, I guess I don't. I just want something to change."
If Miles REALLY WANTED responsibility for himself and his own feelings, he would be doing much more regarding his financial situation. He would be attending to his feelings and practicing Inner Bonding instead of blaming his wife and children for the problems. He would be noticing the thoughts creating his anger and taking action in his own behalf. He would be putting his higher guidance in charge of his choices and actions rather than his resistant wounded child. He recognized that, since he wasn't doing any of these things, he didn't really want responsibility for his feelings and his finances. I suggested that he consciously own this choice. It is probable that he would not move into personal responsibility until he owned that he was choosing to resist and abandon himself, rather than learn to love himself and take responsibility for his feelings.
I Don’t Want To Stay And I Don’t Want To Leave
Rachael was also stuck - in an abusive relationship. Things would go great for a few weeks, and then Jonathan would explode in verbally abusive and threatening behavior that was very scary to Rachael. She loved the good times but the bad times were eroding her health and wellbeing.
"Rachael," I asked, "Do you WANT responsibility for your own health and wellbeing?"
"Well, I think I do," she replied.
"What do you think is causing your health problems?"
"I'm just so stressed due to Jonathan's rage."
"So you want to believe that Jonathan is the cause of your problems?"
"Well, yes. If he didn't get so abusive, I would be fine."
"So you are saying that he has to change for you to be okay. How is that taking responsibility for your own wellbeing?"
"I don't understand."
"What if Jonathan never changes? What if there is nothing you can do to get him to change? What would you do?"
"I don't know."
"Rachael, responsibility for your own health and wellbeing means one of two things: either you learn to handle Jonathan's rage without scaring yourself and stressing about it, and without taking it personally and thinking you can change it, or you leave the relationship. You are doing neither. You are very busy putting your eyes on Jonathan and trying to have control over getting him to change, which is never going to happen. Are you prepared to stay and completely accept his rages?"
"No, they are awful."
"Are you prepared to leave the relationship?"
"No, I love him."
"Then how are you taking responsibility for yourself?"
After a few silent moments, Rachael came into her truth.
"I guess I don’t want that responsibility. I just want him to change."
Wanting Responsibility Means…
WANTING responsibility for our own feelings and wellbeing means that we WANT to let go of responsibility for others and we WANT to stop trying to get others to change, and we WANT full responsibility for ourselves. It means that we WANT to let go of the fantasy that someone will do it for us and we WANT to open to our Divine guidance and show up as a loving adult. It means we want to develop our relationship with higher guidance so that we know we can rely on it to help us be the loving adult we need to be.
Take a moment now to look inside and be honest with yourself. Do you really WANT this responsibility? Are you willing to do whatever you need to do to create inner safety? Are you willing to consciously think and behave in ways that make your inner child feel loved, lovable and worthy? Do you want to surrender to the guidance of Spirit?
If not, then you might need to accept that your life as it is, is as good as it gets. If you do want the responsibility, then you will get unstuck and likely discover your peace and joy, and your inner child will finally feel valued and worthwhile because you are loving yourself rather than abandoning yourself.
To deepen your understanding of what it means to love yourself, read my new book, “Diet For Divine Connection.”
Photo by Geralt
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What is your first reaction when someone is harsh, critical, sarcastic, angry, judgmental, attacking? Do you attack back? Do you withdraw and get silent? Do you defend and explain? Today, honor the feeling in your body that says "This doesn't feel good" and either speak your truth without blame, defense or judgment and open to learning, or lovingly disengage and compassionately take care of your feelings.
By Dr. Margaret Paul