Resistance to CelebratingWritten by Margaret Paul, Ph.D.
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The problem is that it is not really an adult who is making decision to hate holidays – it’s a wounded, angry resistant adolescent who just doesn’t want to be controlled any more. Derek actually has a little child inside - happy, playful, loving child – who would love to be celebrated on his birthday and would love to celebrate others, but this tyrannical, controlling adolescent part of him (who is just like his mother!) won’t let him. So, like Bonnie, his little inner child ends up feeling sad and lonely on holidays and birthdays, while adolescent part of Derek thinks he is beating system.
Derek will never be able to experience joy of celebrations until he starts to care more about what is truly loving to himself and others, rather than being controlled by his resistance to being controlled. As long as not being controlled – by Bonnie, by his mother, or by society and big business – is more important to him than taking care of little child inside who loves celebrations, Derek will be in resistance.
One way of moving out of this resistance is to find something he does want to celebrate. Can he celebrate his love for his wife? Can he celebrate loving part of himself? Can he celebrate fact that he is free to resist and rebel if that is what he wants? Can he celebrate his freedom to choose, his free will to determine what will bring him joy? Derek has choice to move out of celebrating what others say he should celebrate and discover what he wants to celebrate. Then he might discover joy of celebrating!
Meanwhile, Bonnie needs to take care of herself and find people who would enjoy celebrating with her. Rather than being stuck in her loneliness around special days, she needs to find friends to celebrate with her. She needs to let go of trying to get Derek to join her – which only taps into his resistance – and figure out how to take care of herself in face of his choices. She will just lose out if she tries to have any control over his resistance. However, if Derek is open to learning about his resistance and open to learning about what he could celebrate, she can certainly engage in those discussions with him. If she lets go and he opens to exploring, perhaps they can discover new and joyful ways of celebrating!
Margaret Paul, Ph.D. is the best-selling author and co-author of eight books, including "Do I Have To Give Up Me To Be Loved By You?", "Do I Have To Give Up Me To Be Loved By My Kids?", "Healing Your Aloneness","Inner Bonding", and "Do I Have To Give Up Me To Be Loved By God?" Visit her web site for a FREE Inner Bonding course: http://www.innerbonding.com or mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org
Can You Control It?Written by Dave Turo-Shields, ACSW, LCSW
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Admitting powerlessness in a situation does not remove responsibility. For instance, alcoholic who admits powerlessness over alcohol is still responsible for effects of his/her disease on everyone around them, as well as for their recovery today and in future. This is covered beautifully in steps 2-12 of 12 Steps.
There's a second catch though... a good one. There's tremendous freedom in a genuine admission of powerlessness. It's as though heavy chains you've been locked into place with, fall to floor. It's like taking your first big breath of fresh air after nearly suffocating. The weight of a burden is cast away and a different approach has its beginning.
Figuring out what you have influence over and what you do not can be a challenge. If you were to take a sheet of paper and create two columns, one with heading "Can Influence" and other with "Powerless Over," this will assist you in process of determining what areas of your life go where. This will make this process simpler. There will be some areas you'll have to discern over. They will not conform easily to one side or other, and there may be components of a problem which you can influence and other parts you cannot control.
Let's take an in-law problem, for example. This one would likely belong in both columns. You may not be able to control what your in-law does (area for acceptance), but, at same time, you can set boundaries as well as decide what kinds of thoughts and behaviors you will display when this person is around you.
I'll leave you with another very popular tool to help you with achieving peace and joy in your life. We know it as The Serenity Prayer. It was originally spoken in a presentation given in 1932 by Dr. Reinhold Niebuhr. It was ending to a much longer prayer. Here is how we know it today:
THE SERENITY PRAYER
Grant me SERENITY To ACCEPT things I cannot change... COURAGE to change things I can... and WISDOM to know difference.
Take necessary steps today to unburden yourself of just one area of your life that you are powerless over. You can do it. You will discover a new freedom by taking this unique action today.
\\\\\\\\\\\\\\ Dave Turo-Shields, ACSW, LCSW is an author, university faculty member, success coach and veteran psychotherapist whose passion is guiding others to their own success in life. For weekly doses of the webs HOTTEST success tips, sign up for Dave’s powerful “Feeling Great!” ezine at http://www.Overcoming-Depression.com \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\