Sounds simple right? Yep. As a child, we need water, we ask for it. We need food, we ask for it. Now I want to clarify that I’m not talking about “wants”. What happens to us as we grow up? Why does it become more and more difficult to ask for something we need, to ask for help?
What makes us abandon ourselves and please others by keeping it all in?
“Fear keeps us from asking for what we need!”– Tammy McCann
Yep that’s right its fear!
You may be thinking nah, nope not fear…
I ask you to sit with it for a while and trace back to the last time you didn’t ask for what you need. Then go further back and look at when this happened previously and if you keep going back far enough you will see that something happened in your life where there was a point you decided you couldn’t ask for what you need.
People pleasing! Yep, that feels uncomfortable to write but it’s the truth. There was a point where we decided to please another person or people to be loved, to avoid conflict, to shove down our needs and replace them with another’s. Feels lonely, gross and heavy right?
For years I have been so afraid of asking for what I need because one day I was told that it was selfish, that it made me a difficult child, that I rocked the boat. For years there was this little girl inside of me screaming out to be loved and seen and heard, that kept it all inside her dark room in my head and heart. Each time I desperately wanted to scream out for help or speak up that little girl cautioned me, rationalized with me and convinced me that keeping quiet was the best thing for us. So that’s what I did.
It kept being pushed down like an overflowing stream where the rain just kept on pouring and there was no way of turning it off. The thoughts of what I needed would run through my mind, consuming my thoughts. I would wonder why I got headaches and feel tired often. My body knew, it was giving me signs but I just pushed its advice aside and continued to stay quiet. Until finally It was as if there was a volcano lying dormant underneath the stream. The volcano was trapped, hot and so full that it had no choice but to erupt. Everything I had kept in, spilled out into the world, onto my loved ones and anyone in my space, freeing that unheard little girl inside of me.
In the initial aftermath I felt shame, guilt, embarrassment, and more. I was met with all kinds of emotions from others but what I remember was the feeling of freedom, like the sun was shining where it was once so dark and cold, a glimpse of love and light had entered the space. I uncovered the ray of light inside of myself, that was waiting patiently under all those unspoken needs. As I continue to speak up for myself and others, each time I ask for what I need, I feel free and at peace within myself. I may not always get it, but I know it’s my choice what happens next.
Here’s how I do it now:
- Recognise the discomfort within my body. It can be many things -maybe its feeling hot or an ache that appears or wanting to walk away.
- Breathe. Yes, sometimes I take a few deep breaths in front of others. Breathing at least 4 breaths in through my nose and out through my mouth gets me focused on my whole self.
- I ask myself for what I need. I am of course the expert on me. I often close my eyes and ask myself “What do I need right now?” to get beyond my ego I continue by asking “What else?”
- I summon up all the self-love I can and ask for what I need. There is a space in all of us that knows, some call it gut instinct others call it an inner leader, Glennon Doyle calls it her touch tree, I call it home. Whatever you call it, call it in and use your voice to ask for what you need.
You are the genie in your life, only you can grant the wishes in your heart.– Tammy McCann
It has taken me many years to realise that it’s not my job to please others, it’s theirs. It’s my job to please, to love and honor myself.
I know how it feels to be in that dark cold place and now that I know how to reach for the love and the light. Each day I choose to use my voice, to show love for myself because after all, I am my biggest cheerleader!
I believe in you, and you should too!
Ray Of Light Coaching Ltd