In the book Take Your Life Back, there’s a concept we call relational dictatorship. Some of you need to take your life back from a relational dictator who thinks they know what is best for you. Either a wife or a husband can be a dictator. Sometimes a parent can still be the dictator; and their adult child (which is an apt description) can be married with children of their own, but they’re locked into their own childhood by the parent who won’t let go and allow them to individuate into a full-fledged adult.
What happens when we’re in a relational dictatorship? We’re stunted in our growth as a person, and we’re ruled by our emotions. There’s nothing wrong with emotions, but they’re not meant to rule our lives. Why? Because when we’re ruled by our emotions, we’re living a reactive lifestyle and we’re reacting to the dictator. (more…)
Elizabeth had been in a small group of ladies she had known since growing up. She felt so comfortable with them that she opened up and shared some important things. But after she risked telling about something very personal, she learned they gossiped about her. Elizabeth felt so betrayed that she left the group and has struggled with trusting new groups.
Like Elizabeth, you may have been betrayed by a group that betrayed confidence or gossiped about you. Sadly, many people have been hurt by gossip in groups, or have had someone share what was shared in a group to someone outside the group. (more…)
From the moment we take our first breath, we need a healthy bond with our parents. When we are hungry, our parents feed us; and if we fall, they pick us up. This secure connection sets the stage for healthy relationships in the future. By having a secure attachment, we feel seen, heard, and understood.
As we get to be older, we go off to school and learn how to develop relationships with others. And at the end of the school day, we come back home to our parents and hopefully get our needs met. This bond gives us the stability to learn to separate from unhealthy people and relationships. It can also help us to develop boundaries.
What if we did not form a strong, healthy bond with our parents? (more…)
Is it hard for you to say no? If so, you may need to develop boundaries. Knowing how to say no and when to stand up for yourself can be extremely difficult, especially if you’ve been a people-pleaser in the past. It is like a muscle that needs to be built and exercised. To help you, here are some tips to learn to say no.
- Take Responsibility
You are responsible for your feelings. However, you’re not responsible for someone else’s feelings. If you feel you were not given a voice, you may feel responsible for how other people feel. And it might be hard for you to talk about your feelings. Start with someone you feel comfortable with, and practice disagreeing on small matters. This will help you gain confidence and understand how to own your truth. (more…)
“If you are living in isolation because of shame, God wants you out of hiding and into the arms of a healing community.”- Steve Arterburn
Have you been isolating yourself? Are you ashamed of your struggles? Has it been hard for you to connect with others? One thing that will either make or break your recovery is connection. You are more likely to succeed in recovery when you choose to connect. But isolating, withdrawing, and separating is dangerous. Why? There are three reasons why isolation is dangerous.
Reason 1: Isolation hurts your relationship with God.
When you go off course, you tend to run from God. We’ve all made mistakes; we’ve all done things we’ve regretted. (more…)
“He who seeks a friend without a fault remains without one.” – Anonymous
Do you have a fear of abandonment? Were you hurt at a very young age? Is it hard for you to form safe, secure relationships? If so, it may be keeping you from bonding with others.
You want to have healthy relationships; yet, you are frightened and scared and pull away. Also, are you tired of trying to form new relationships because you always get hurt? Here are three tips to help you form healthy attachment in relationships. (more…)