If a behaviour is an avoidance tactic, stopping to do it shows you what you are avoiding. Boy did I get shown!
This shouting diet has been a real eye-opener for me. For one thing, it’s made it very, VERY clear to me that if I feel the urge to shout at my child (or partner, or dog, or self) it has very little to do with my child (or partner, or dog, or self). I knew that before, I really did, but abstaining from the release of shouting has plonked that ball so firmly in my court it bonked me in the eye.
So, again, my shouting – or anger, frustration, fear… – is not about the trigger (ie my child, or partner, or dog, or self). The triggers just remind us of some old hurt we’re carrying around. It’s the hurt that’s raising the feelings. The hurt is from previous times in our lives. We were smaller when those hurts happened, so when we’re reminded of them now, we feel small and the feelings seem too big, just like we felt back then – that’s why we try to make them go away by shouting – or punishing, or withdrawing, or eating…
Sometimes my child doesn’t listen to me and I want to scream at him to MOVE! “Just listen to me!” At those moments he seems so huge to my small self. Like he’s this great big immovable obstacle in front of which I’m powerless.
If I notice my big reaction and say, “Oh this is mine. What do I need?” all of a sudden things move back into their true proportions. He is just a small boy who is finding it hard to leave his game to go bath. I’m not small and he’s not big. We’re just two people trying to figure things out.
During this shouting diet, it’s become so much easier for me to say, “Oh this is mine. What do I need?”. That’s because the results have been AMAZING! I generally feel much better annnnd… it’s pretty much stopped me shouting. Seriously. After that last bean I haven’t even been tempted to shout – I’ve been irritated, yes, frustrated, yes, overwhelmed, yes – but shouted? No.
Ok well, there was that one little time… but still, it’s 0.3% of what it was like before. In four weeks? Not bad.
So why is this? What have I learned by saying, “Oh this is mine. What do I need?”
Wow. So much!
First of all it’s a compassionate response to myself in a time of need and distress. Yes please!
Second, the answers to ‘What do I need?” have shown me that there are three common dastardly beliefs that seem to underlie all our problems – which is why a compassionate response works best of all.
Please add your thoughts and comments below – I’d love to hear – but for now this is how it looks to me. These three tricksy beliefs are underneath ANY behaviour and feeling you don’t like:
I am not good enough.
I am not worthy (enough).
I am not important (enough).
There it is. Those three lies are the cause of all your problems.
I know I’m repeating previous posts but seriously people, it bears repeating don’t you think? We HAVE to learn to be compassionate with ourselves.
We just have to.
Those beliefs are untrue.
Moments of pain, anger, frustration. Powerlessness, out of control. Irritation, fear, anxiety – are all showing us where we are disconnected from knowing we have worth and that we are enough.
Remember this when you feel that way:
I AM WORTHY.
I AM LOVED.
I AM IMPORTANT.
I AM ENOUGH.
And so is he (or she – or whomever you are mad at).
Reassuring my frightened younger self of these things in the heated moments is the reason I haven’t even been tempted to shout. I am dealing with the core cause of the pain so I don’t need to get it out of me.
I am healing it, yes I am.
Join me? Let me know how it goes?
Pass this on. Spread the healing people! Add some good to our world. Imagine if everyone knew they were enough?