Saturday, March 12, 2016

Responsibility and Healing

I wanted to be more creative.  I had a problem to overcome.  When I would "go out on a limb" I would do my fastest and least productive work.  I would then expect praise, and when this was not forthcoming, I began to play the blame game.

Ah, that blame game.  The game can look like these: It's not my fault that I didn't bother to check my spelling it's the computer.  No one likes what I write anyways, so I won't write.  It's not my fault I don't have time to post each day.  It's the kids, it's the time away from the computer.

To some people it's everything but me.

Or, are you more like this?

The blame list can look like this: it's all my fault, I should have been better.  I am so dumb.  I didn't do it right.  I am useless.  I should have seen that grammar mistake for what it was, a sign I'm not good enough.  I'm stupid.

To others, it's them.

Either way the blame game is a knife to the gut.  It simply means I'm making excuses for my actions. Some people can do the blame game and can keep doing it, and there isn't anything that happens to them, at least in the wellbeing sense.  It protects them.

The blame game was for me, the game which broke me, and set me on the path to a mental wellbeing challenge.  I would blame myself to the point I would deny my own worth. I would work hard on my blog- or so I believed- only to find that I would turn it into another reason why I failed.  With this failure in mind, I could, and did find many ways to undermine myself.

Outwardly, I would be the most positive happy person one could imagine.  I was writing, I was someone most people cared to be around.  Inside I was angry.  I was helpless. I wasn't in control.  I could feel pain from an overpowering negative emotions.

To compensate I would self-harm.

Some days were worse, some better.  Some days I could believe in what I was doing and think I was better.  Most days were filled with the fear I would be found out.  That I was a failure, that I was worst for trying.  If I thought I would fail I would stop eating, I would yell and scream in pain I couldn't define, I would hurt myself.

I wasn't about to take responsibility for my actions and how I blamed people and myself.  I couldn't stop the pain, and I didn't have the means to do so.  I wasn't about to stop and say I needed help. At least not at the beginning.

The key to the start of my own journey to healing was to take responsibility.  Not to blame myself for things I couldn't change.  I took responsibility for my response to whatever was thrown at me.  If my writing was subpar, it meant a re-write.

I learned that responsible people have a deep sense of gratitude but also a deep sense of self.  They know what they can or can't do.  They might not have had the "tools" they needed to start with, but they took time to find them and to develop them.

For me, it was learning to cope with what was the only "way" to cope.  I learned to express my anger or my frustration to the right mentors and guides.  They in turn helped me along the way, re-learning old habits, replacing them with better ones. (Note I didn't say more positive ones, rather better ones) and then, going back and working with my new tools.

Healing begins after you take the steps to stop the blame game.  Stop it.  I'm not saying it's easy, it's a huge undertaking to stop blaming, making excuses or justifying why you did things.  That's the start.  Next is learning to be more responsible in how you heal, and how you become more creative.

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