Find out, for free, by playing with me in my new blogging sandbox! Yesterday I posted this invitation on Facebook: “Juicy Joy is the art of feeling blissfully comfortable in your own skin; being so crazy-in-love with your own delicious self that the ups and downs of real life can’t shake your baseline joy. So send me your thoughts/questions, or whatever you feel is keeping you from your own Juicy Joy, and I will respond through the filter of Juicy Joy wisdom.” Buckets of thanks to those who responded, both privately and publicly!
I’m going to kick things off today with Mike – the first, brave, public responder. Here’s his challenge, in his words: “Letting go of the fear that was instilled in me as a child through physical abuse as I was told that I would never amount to anything . . . I have found moderate to great success in my life but have always felt limited by the belief that I didn’t deserve it, that I somehow ‘lucked into it,’ and I move on to something else instead of fully exploring and enjoying success. To date, I have been a plumber, teacher (K-12 and college), sous chef, CIO, and run several small companies. I keep reinventing myself because I never feel successful enough in my own right. Next up, writer and artist.”
Mike, first of all, you rock. Your situation and background are egregiously common, but you are a huge step ahead of the pack with that impressive degree of self-awareness. Cheers, my friend! You are closer to your Juicy Joy than you know! Gaining clear awareness of what’s running you (usually obtained through detailed Juicy Joy processes) is the first critical step in any Juicy Joy journey. Each of us has many, many factors contributing to our own unique perspective on the world and our place in it, as well as many reasons for our subconscious tendencies to limit our own enjoyment of our successes and blessings. But it’s safe to assume that the one you’ve identified (childhood abuse) is a major culprit in your undeserving feelings.
I’m sensing what you need first is a touch of inner-child/re-parenting work to re-wire that early programming. Much more could be accomplished in Juicy Joy training, of course, but for now, try going on this little imaginative trip with me: Let your mind wander to a time in your childhood when you felt judged by a parent. What is the first word or phrase that comes to mind to represent their judgment of you? Maybe it’s “stupid,” or “incompetent,” or “unlovable,” or maybe it’s the whole idea that you’d, “never amount to anything.” Take a few moments to figure out what one word or phrase might sum up your unworthiness best. It sounds like for you it most likely came from your parents, but for some it might have come from a sibling, teacher, or friend. You know you’ve found it when it triggers an inward cringe – an instinct to push it away. Call it forth instead.
How does this word feel to you right now? Chances are you’ve spent much of your life trying to prove yourself to be the opposite of this word. But there’s also a good chance that you secretly, or perhaps subconsciously, fear that you do possess this trait. Look to see if that might be true for you, even if your first instinct is to deny it. If you feel any energy around this word – if it triggers discomfort – it’s active for you.
As vividly as you can, imagine the whole scene from your childhood, as it played out in one particular instance. Who leveled this insult? How old were you? If you don’t remember a specific incident, make one up. Whatever you imagine right now will be fine for purposes of this exercise. When you have the scene pretty vivid in your imagination, pretend it’s a scene in a movie and you’re sitting in the audience, watching. How do you feel as you imagine watching this scene unfold? Does the audience buy into the insult at all, or is the audience feeling love and compassion for the child in this situation? Isn’t it clear to the audience that this accusation says much more about the accuser than it does about the child? There’s no truth to the accusation, is there?
Now imagine a new character strides into the scene. It’s Present-Day You, dressed exactly as you are dressed right now. Present-Day You is the child’s ally. Yay! The audience is relieved! Present-Day You tells the insulter to never call Child You that again, and the insulter stomps off screen in a huff. Then Present-Day You gets down to eye-level with Child You and the camera zooms in for a big, warm hug. In your own words, let Present-Day You comfort Child You and assure Child You that the insult has no bearing in reality. Sing Child You’s praises, and promise that you’ll be there from now on to protect Child You and make sure Child You knows how intrinsically wonderful and special he is. Soak up all that loving energy oozing around the movie theater now.
Do you feel any loosening of the resistance around your trigger word from doing just that one super-simple process? You may need to repeat it several times to get to the deep feeling place where this wound can be unwound.
If you still believe that the trigger word accurately applies to you in any way, it probably means that you’ve created some evidence in your life to support it. If that’s the case, I want you to consider this crazyass truth: the belief you had about yourself – whether conscious or unconscious – is what led you to create the evidence. The evidence is only there because of the belief. Allowing the belief to remain will only cause you to create more similar evidence. Working now to unwind the belief will lead you to create the opposite kind of evidence from this point forward.
I hope this tiny smidgen of Juicy Joy helps you, Mike. I’d love to get my hands on you in the upcoming online course! Message me privately if you’d like a discount coupon for it.
Ahhh, it feels so good to be blogging again! I’m enjoying this new format, so keep the questions coming, my juicy ones. Message me through Facebook or Lisa@LisaMcCourt.com so we can get juicy together!