Over the past year and half or so, since ending my toxic narcissistic childhood first love revisited I have kept busy. First, it was understanding the underpinnings of this insidious affliction- that is understanding narcissist abuse. I often think about if I had known then what I know now how different my life might have been. I came out of such a toxic environment, and he was for my first attempt to really belong outside of that mess. As a result of the trilogy of my mother, father and first love, my self-image, confidence as well as the understanding of my self was compromised. Well as they say, I hope it true, it is never too late I began a course of therapy both secular and non-secular and this helped me to understand both him and myself. I continued my exercise routine adding evening work outs at a fight club near my house including jujitsu and boxing which helped strengthen my body as well as my emotional head space. I began a journey of blogging. At first, I knew nothing about the internet. A generous friend gave of his time and helped me with the post. As result of our continued friendship, we now work together expanding his web design business. This month alone we working on three different profit yielding projects. With the help of another friend, I started another business. I found free poetry class and life coaching lessons the local library. I plan on taking a master gardening class there again all free. Volunteering, another free opportunity to create growth and meet people. I pay for one guitar lesson and month and of course all of this is layered into the fabric of what once was my life. The therapy I am involved with now is also free. It comes from the pastor that councils me from the church that I volunteer, I feel his investment in me has been valuable as he is really the first person to say out load- you’re not depressed, you’re just lonely. He has helped me to make weekly outreach plans, something that I have to realize is very difficult for me. Had someone told me a year and almost a half ago that I would be involved in two business, two churches, two gyms, a number of classes and new activities I would have never been able to believe it. Regardless of where the road take me, I feel I am ready to be a far better traveler.
Day 94 Your Assignment
You owe it to yourself to be your own advocate. You owe it to yourself to get busy and pursuit your purpose. While I cannot guarantee where this will take you, I can tell you the trip is far more fun when you are in the driver’s seat!
Discipline is about being congruent. Acting in harmony with thoughts, words and action defines character. This is discipline. This is being congruent. It is either black or white in this case there is no gray area. In the bazillion shades of gray that most of us eventually settle for and into discipline and being congruent can easily be misaligned. In trying to find my purpose, as I discussed in the previous blogs, I have discovered I was not always acting in being congruent with my thoughts, words and deeds. I lacked discipline. I lacked being congruent. I was not raised to trust my own thoughts. This lack of trust translated poorly into words and deeds as I was not acting in harmony with thoughts, or true feelings. This came from growing up in a place where my thought- or interpretation of reality was punished. If I was not on board with the crazy, my parents would simple dismiss, isolate, or ignore me. As a result, I became fearful of remaining true or congruent with my inner thoughts. I rationalized and justified because somehow the fear of rejection and abandonment outweighed all rational thought. In truth, I had very little trust for my own resolve. This is where I got lost. The messages I received about myself as a young girl did not help me negotiate the world from a position of strength. Growing up, if I did not go with the CRAZY flow, then I was OUT! Who wants doesn’t want to belong i.e. out? The problem with that, is as I became an adult it was an easy path to follow. I have spent the last year and some months steeped in reflection, therapy from two different therapist, I have purged myself into everything from poetry class, music class, jujitsu, boxing, volunteering, and starting new business all the while finding my purpose. In all of this I now realize that the greatest gift to myself is the ability to remain focused on my purpose as I stay in harmony with my thoughts, words and deeds. Remaining disciplined and congruent from thoughts to action plan has been a major positive movement in finding a better way out of “Crazy-Ville” and into “Normal Town”. As I become stronger, I notice that I am not alone in these struggles, I am just for the moment more conscious of my fight.
Listen to, and trust your inner narrative. Be mindful of your thoughts, words and deeds. Stay congruent with all your thoughts, words and actions. Try to be conscience of what you truly desire and work towards that end!
If you can’t identify your purpose, then finding a purpose is a or should be your purpose! The ache for companionship is real. It can be awkward, debilitating and frustrating when failed connections are the only ones that seem to manifest. The feeling of being left out of this game can be distracting when trying to discover your purpose. However, be strong! Do not allow yourself to be distracted. Your life’s ambition and your life’s work needs to your focus. It is easy to get lost in the hunt for some ideal relationship, especially when you have never really had a good connection, but this can be a trap for people who overly focus on a relationship. It is a kind of cruel twist of nature that people with intimacy issues, really hunger for intimacy and in and of itself this hunger makes them a less desirable. This neediness trap can be very difficult cycle to get out of and it is ideal narcissist prey! As for purpose, your purpose has got to your own, it cannot be an extension of another. Get to know yourself. Understand what makes YOU happy or what will make you happy. This might require some research. For example go to the local library and spend some time identifying things that interest you (–outside of relationships-). Try to think of all aspects of your life and or personality; for example physical, emotional, financial and spiritual as an example now make small goals for improvement in one or two. Find a hobby, learn a language or start playing an instrument all of this while you are searching for your life’s purpose and that is a purpose! Once you have identified your purpose, it is easy to move forward. Well at least to move forward with a greater ease and not just fixated on a personal struggles… Free from relationship dependency, you are far more likely to find both your purpose and ironically meet people that will share in YOUR interests. Each of us are beautiful and unique. No two people are the same. Find your beautiful and unique purpose, and the narcissists around you should find you less interesting!
Day 92 Your Assignment
Start thinking about your purpose. Go to the local library and begin your research. Think of it as like finding a beautiful lost work of art. The busier you are, the more interesting you become, the less interesting you become to the narcissist!
The journey continues- As I moved out the darkness of the narcissistic space, like an addict off the booze, I was forced to rework my life. Abandoning the addiction, the fantasy of false love, I was forced to examine all of the pillars that underpinned my loneliness. This was a bitter sweet journey beginning with the heart breaking realization that my mental image of my childhood sweet heart was a lie, but as I have stated many times a trip worth taking. These next days are more about that clarity that I hope will come from embracing ground zero of loneliness. The journal also acts as a continued reminder that there is no magic formula or set amount of time to pull out of the grip of narcissistic abuse. It is two steps forward and one step back. Abuse of this nature only occurs in the narcissistic space, not so much a real place, but existing all the same space! It is more like a mirage, a kind of head space that manifest because two people are willing to buy into a narcissistic fantasy- lie. Fantasy-lie can be a great release from a brutal reality-truth, but in the end remains just that, both a fantasy and a lie. Once removed from that head space, for better or worse I felt far more in touch with my own reality as well as my own demons. For me, those demons were about trying to belong in places that I just didn’t fit. Dealing with my childhood shame and history of dysfunction that would take far more than a few blogs to fully detail. I now realize, in my early adult life I was NOT working on the best version of myself. I was emotionally festering from deep inside the childhood wounds. This made me an easy target for the guy who was willing to tell me exactly what I wanted to hear! Working from the outside in, trying to recapture pieces of a lost life or more to the point trying to gain acceptance and love from indifferent, sadistic, withholding types of people that were just not interested in giving me what I needed was my way of doing business with the world. This draining pursuit of the love lie, was (and is) just that…a never ending battle, that kept devouring me. Like the mirage, narcissistic love is a cruel promise that from far away looks beautiful but disappears the closer you get! People say you have to love yourself before you can love others. While I understand and respect the mantra, the truth as I see it, love is way a thinking, a guiding principle that if used correctly will break the chains of dysfunction and loneliness. Platonic-love, romantic love, love of the world, the love for a purposeful driven life, may begin with self-love or is it the byproduct of self-love? Embarrassing the world, learning to hug, experiencing the world outside the lines while finding purpose is a tall order for those of us unable to get beyond our own trauma, anger addictions and grief. Moving forward is about the maturing evolution of all areas of life, it is a process one that requires one thing to be successful and that is no matter how slow the movement forward, never giving up!
Day 91 Your Assignment
Continue your efforts to find your own way. Never give up on your vision. Know you are not alone!