Meet Kristy. You’d agree upon meeting her that she’s probably one of the nicest people out there. She brightens up every room and radiates kindness everywhere she goes. You can’t not love Kristy.
But let’s take a look behind the façade for a minute: Kristy is starving on the inside. Her genuine desire to help others has come with a hefty price tag. By giving so much to others, she is unknowingly trying to fill a void within. Her biggest blind spot is in not truly knowing herself.
Busy isn’t Best
From the moment she wakes up until she goes to sleep at night, Kristy in constantly in a rush. Her mornings are filled with urgency in getting the kids out the door, fed, clothed and a-hem, alive. And there’s that part about making sure she’s presentable; honestly, days go by where she wonders if she remembered to brush her hair.
At work, Kristy loves what she does and gives 100% to her tasks. Deep down, however, she feels unappreciated and used. Her desk is the ultimate dumping zone: people love her ability to listen and even more, they love how dependable she is to get the work done! Without a clue of how she’s teaching people how to treat her, Kristy is digging her own grave. Her responsibilities grow to the point where she just can’t afford to take that proper lunch break or any breaks for that matter. The level of stress increases daily.
After work, Kristy rushes to get the kids from after-school care, starts dinner preparation and makes sure dinner is on the table when hubby gets home. Once the family is fed, Kristy puts everything away and cleans the kitchen. If she can remember, she’ll throw in that load of laundry and wipe down the bathroom vanity. “Which reminds me,” she thinks, “I’ve got to remember to change the sheets in the guest room and buy groceries for company this weekend.” With that, she remembers she needs to write that grocery list tonight! Next comes bath time, then bed. By 9pm, Kristy is wiped but she knows what how important it is to spend time with her hubby. By 10pm, Kristy finally hits the pillow knowing full well that when she wakes up, she gets to do it all over again.
As she tries to sleep, her thoughts hit her in full force, “oh no…let’s not forget the 3 pies that need to be made for the school bake sale, those meeting minutes that need to be typed up for the Parent Advisory meeting on Wednesday, and that dentist appointment that needs to be scheduled for dear husband.”
Perhaps you can relate to Kristy’s story. In our fast-paced society, we seem to think that busy-ness is a good thing because it demonstrates that we’re being productive and adding value to the world around us.
With time, Kristy has become her own worst enemy and the growing pressure to keep everyone happy is feeling heavier with each passing day. But to say no is impossible. That would just be rude. And selfish. Not to mention, people might decide she’s not reliable anymore.
Kristy is the epitome of many clients I work with. She teaches others how to treat her by enabling them to chronically depend on her. Her chronic need to please may be subconscious but she needs to change things up before it tears her down.
If anything is to change, Kristy must first understand that the person who shows up after being so heavily depleted is not going to be person of love and compassion. Rather, she will become everything she is afraid of being: selfish, angry, resentful, or withdrawn. Her family and other loved ones will pay the greatest price.
The Road to Sanity
To address the root of the problem, Kristy needs to shift her perception. As it stands, she feels the time she could use for self-discovery would be selfish and achieve nothing. As long as she continues to believe this, she will become a mere shadow of her best self.
In working with me, clients like Kristy are able to understand why they give to the point of having nothing and what they really stand to gain by being a saviour. Once Kristy is able to truly see the importance of self care, the art of saying “no” when it’s required and the practice of empowering others rather than enabling them, she can then show up as the best possible version of herself.
Can you identify with Kristy? Is your best self being allocated in the most powerful way? Talk to me today and let’s get you out of the martyr trap so you can give from a much more authentic and loving place. Contact me to get started!