Letting go of outdated coping mechanisms

Letting go of outdated coping mechanisms can be challenging. Sometimes we have done them for so long it seems like who we are. It can feel weird, and unsettling to choose to behave differently.

For instance, I have been a people pleaser for a long time, trying to win love and approval because I felt so alone, so sad and scared at times when I was young. My Dad worked away from home for weeks on end, and my Mum wasn’t very happy or child-focused. Her Mum wasn’t a cuddly Mum either so it was normal for her to tell me to just go away, go play, and leave her alone. This taught me to be able to hide, not take up too much space, be somewhat invisible and repress my needs for contact, affection, and togetherness.

The positive of this was I became more connected and attuned with nature, wandering the farm on my own. I became focused on studying and later work/career as a way to occupy myself and distract myself from my loneliness and sadness. I too was a lot like my Mum telling my needs to go away, leave me alone. And as I got older I treated my friend’s kids as a bit of a nuisance too. I’d be polite and friendly, but get bored quickly and wish they would go play so I could spend time with my friend. What occurs to us when little stays with us until we heal it.

I wanted to have kids but never did. They’d take up so much time and energy. I had so many fears of them getting hurt, of not being able to protect them, and of not wanting to hurt them myself. I had so much family baggage and entanglements with my ancestors that the fear was overpowering.

I’ve had to work through layer after layer of conditioning and entanglements to release them and be more open to caring for my inner child, meeting my needs, accepting what occurred in my childhood and understanding why my parents behaved the way they did, and that it actually wasn’t about me.

Their moods, their sadness and confusing behaviour weren’t about me. It was a consequence of an unhappy marriage that wasn’t working out and was heading towards separation. My parents, like a lot of us adults, were caught up in their own pain and life challenges and didn’t notice my needs.

This is very common and kids are very adaptable. They find ways to get by, to cope, to avoid or distract themselves from their painful emotions. They change the way they behave trying to win or earn love, attention, and approval.

I was the queen of that! Do a PhD, try and save the world, and help improve the sustainability of the planet. Added bonus I’m so busy working and studying I can ignore how sad I am or how lonely I feel because I’m doing important work. I’m being useful and good, earning my place in society, and hopefully getting seen, loved and accepted.

This pattern of overwork and study, helping others and helping the planet and society have continued through all I do, but I try to be more balanced with it now and to do it because I love it and enjoy it, not because I have to or am trying to win love, attention, acceptance or thinking that others need me to save, rescue or fix them. That’s classic codependence and not healthy.

So now I focus more on what I want to do and what I need. I meet my own needs and take care of the younger selves within me who were hurting. I look at life with more adult eyes, instead of wounded child eyes, and I realise my life is good. I have what I need, a home, a good job, a loving partner and family, friends, hobbies and more. My life is actually really good. It was just all the old hurt, old story that made it feel less than, not okay, lacking.

As I settle into this ‘enoughness’ I start to question “What do I want to do? How much of it do I want to do? What do I value most and where will I put my time and energy?” It’s a recalibration of the old coping mechanisms into a newer, freer, more flexible way of being, able to say no, to rest, to be quiet, still and receptive, reconnecting with body and heart, not just mind and feelings.

It’s a big journey coming back home to feel safe and okay in your body, letting go of the old story and accepting what has been and is, and choosing how you want to live your life.

Our pasts may have been painful and filled with challenges. We don’t have to like that, but fighting against it, and complaining about it just keeps us stuck. When we do the work to heal we can break free of the patterns and open to the new. It is worth the effort.

Many blessings to all,

Jodi-Anne

P.S. There is a range of free resources on my website that may be of assistance to you with your healing journey.

Another self

The Netflix series ‘Another Self’ is a Turkish 8-part series that follows the life of 3 women and their families as they work through their challenges with the help of Family Constellations. I’ve watched 3 episodes so far and each has shown a Family Constellations session explaining how illnesses, relationship problems, career issues, finance blocks and repeating patterns are often related to our unprocessed trauma or that of our ancestors passed on for us to heal and bring peace to the family system.

It is wonderful how Family Constellations is becoming more mainstream and how TV shows like this demonstrate the effectiveness of the approach as it reaches the core cause underneath our challenges and helps to alter our defence mechanisms and conditioning to free us to choose differently and experience a more joyful life.

I thoroughly recommend this show to anyone who is curious about understanding the deeper reasons why we experience the challenges we do. It’s an engaging and clever series beautifully presenting Family Constellations concepts and theory while demonstrating its application with real-life examples. Well worth watching. Enjoy!

https://www.netflix.com/au/title/81380432

Releasing stress and tension

When fear rules in our lives we get exhausted from being stuck in hypervigilance. Our body is on high alert, scanning for danger, primed to run away, fight or hide if needed. It’s exhausting and often there is no external threat. The message of danger, of threat, is coming from within the body.

Our past stresses, tensions and traumas get stored in the body if we weren’t able to deal with them at the time. If we couldn’t tell our boss what we really thought, if we couldn’t leave when we really wanted to, if we froze and avoided facing that really annoying person who we find draining – all of these are relatively minor incidents, but in each of them adrenaline and cortisol get released into our body priming us to act.

If we don’t take action the adrenaline and cortisol build up in our body leading to feeling stressed, tense, and anxious and if it builds up a lot or we experience a more significant shock or trauma, a near miss accident, an actual threatening situation with a violent person, a medical procedure that involves life threat or invasion of our body, cutting it open, broken bones or many other procedures this is Capital T trauma for the body. This can send us into overwhelm, into a sense of it all being too much and a need to escape from it, to dissociate or numb ourselves from the pain and challenge of it all. This is the body moving into freeze and collapse.

We need to release these stresses, tension and traumas so that they don’t build up, so that our bodies can live in a more relaxed state where socialising is easier, where our body can focus on digesting our food, repairing and restoring itself. This calm, relaxed state is called the parasympathetic ventral vagal state. Our body feels safe, relaxed and peaceful.

Many of us don’t live in that state very often anymore. We don’t get time to relax, to be, to drop down, slow down and feel what is going on inside. Many of us live hectic, fast, busy lives, so we stay in a state of low to medium stress and inner activation of our autonomic nervous system.

Many people use substances to try and get out of that worked-up, agitated or anxious state. Some use sex, gambling, alcohol, drugs or internet browsing as a way to distract themself from their inner turmoil. Some use yoga, baths, and time in nature or time with friends, pets and loved ones. All of these will help to calm your body. But if the underlying issues aren’t resolved your stress level will jump back up with the next trigger or challenge you face.

I used to have days when my body would be hyper-alert for no outside reason. Nothing had happened to stress me out above the norm. I wasn’t in danger. I was just trying to go to work and get through the day. Yet my body was jumping at any sound or movement nearby. I’d have days where I felt this rage inside of me and I knew I’d have to be extra mindful not to take that out on anyone who interacted with me that day. I’d be intolerant, grumpy and not much fun to be around. The anger radiated off of me warning people to watch out, keep their distance or else.

These reactions were not appropriate for the situation I was facing. I was safe, not in danger but my body was reacting as if I was in a war zone. This is because my nervous system was activated strongly and I had moved up into extreme fight and flight. Without taking action to reduce it I would soon move into exhaustion and collapse. I would go into numbness, depression, and feelings of why bother, it’s all too hard. In the early days this would lead to a negative spiral as I would lose hope and go into despair – why me, why is it so hard?

Nowadays I know if I start to move in that direction it is because my body is needing me to rest, pay attention to my inner world, and feel and release the emotions and tension stored inside. I learned and later qualified to be a practitioner of Tension and Trauma Releasing Exercises (TRE), which is the body’s natural way of releasing stress, tension and trauma. It’s our body’s way of using up all the adrenaline and cortisol from stressful, scary, threatening moments so that our body can calm back down, can feel safe and relaxed again.

TRE is a process to activate this built-in mechanism that all mammals have. The body literally shakes and tremors spontaneously, to release the stress, tension and trauma. It uses up the adrenaline and cortisol from those fight and flight moments so that the activations get completed.

The tremors help to free up the frozen parts of us, the muscles that have locked up in fear and gone numb, disconnected from the whole. The tremoring helps to melt the ice so that energy can flow again. This helps to ease the pain as the muscles relax and blood flow increases.

TRE has become a Godsend for me. I have become more attuned to my nervous system and my body so that I can take action at the early stages of stress rather than waiting till there is a volcano of rage inside of me or a tornado of tears, grief and resentment. I have learned it’s safe to go into my body and be present with what I find, to love and honour my body and its needs. It’s helped me to ground and relax, to be more peaceful overall and of course, other people can feel that too. When my nervous system is calm and radiating safety and playfulness it invites others to do the same. It’s lovely to be in that gentle place and to return to it regularly after the inevitable stress and challenges of daily life.

TRE is taught worldwide and can be learned in 2-3 sessions. Once you have learned how to self-regulate your tremoring, you can use it at home whenever you want to help balance your body and find a greater sense of inner peace and calm.

There is even a free online self-study course. The course is suitable for those that haven’t experienced significant trauma and mental health challenges. Those that have are better off learning TRE with a practitioner like me just to make sure you can self-regulate your tremoring process and that you don’t ignore or over-ride your body’s signals of when to stop tremoring.

The below video is a brief introduction to TRE. If you would like to see some examples of people tremoring, access the free online course or book a session to learn TRE please visit https://www.jodiannemsmith.com/tre/

Many blessings,

Jodi-Anne

Coming home to my heart…

When we have been wounded in life we develop strong defence mechanisms to keep ourselves safe, to survive the best way we know how. My defence mechanisms were to isolate, hide, and try to fix the pain of myself and others so love could flow. I felt alone, sad, isolated and at times angry and resentful. I slipped in and out of depression, exhaustion, and collapse. When I’d find enough strength I’d try to climb out of the hole I’d created for myself and I’d try to be special so that I might get loved, accepted, be wanted and belong.

What I didn’t realise for decades was I was already loved, accepted and I belonged. I had just shut off to my family system out of fear, wounding and disappointment of what occurred in my early life. This disappointment was a key feeling throughout my life. No matter how much I achieved it never felt enough. No matter how much I learned it didn’t seem to be all I needed.

The truth is I was looking in the wrong places. I was needy and desperate and trying to be the best I could be because then I’d be special and get seen and loved.I tried to save and rescue Mother Earth with my sustainability career. I tried to save and rescue others in my early counselling and healing work. I tried to save and rescue myself and to appear strong and capable and like I had all the answers, but really I was still feeling like that wounded, scared child inside.

It was only when I turned within to work with my inner child, my defence mechanisms, my emotions and my nervous system which was locked in states of fight, flight, freeze, and collapse, that I started to receive relief. And amazingly I realised I already had all I needed. I didn’t need to be big and special to be seen, I could relax and be me, and share from the heart. I could slow down, take care of myself and live my life for me.

a person sitting on wooden planks across the lake scenery
Photo by S Migaj on Pexels.com

I could serve from a place of empowerment, helping others to unravel their own defences and patterning, helping them to see how they could feel and release their emotions and how they could calm and rebalance their nervous system. I could plant seeds that clients watered so they could grow into beautiful gardens and joyous lives.

I didn’t need to be special to be loved. I just had to heal my wounds enough that I could open the door and let love in. It had always been knocking but I’d been too scared to let it in, to trust it would stay and that I wouldn’t be devastated when it left me. For that was my fear, parental divorce and separation from parents when young had led me to a fear of loving and losing. I’d shut down internally and was focused on self-reliance.

When we shut our internal doors to love we can’t feel the goodness of life that is available to us. We end up stagnating, getting lonely and sad. We see the pain all around us instead of the love and light. It is so important to heal those patterns so you can open the curtains and let the light in. We are all doing the best we can with the life experiences we have faced. It is a challenging journey coming home to our hearts, our beauty, and our innocence to realise we are enough as we are. No need to fight and struggle with life. No need to impress and earn love or to hide and reject all that is given to you.

It’s okay to let the defences down, drop from the mind and enter your heart, to reestablish feeling and connection with your body, to become re-embodied and come home to all of who you really are. It’s a joyous journey when you can be comfortable in your own skin, your life, your essence.

I’m so grateful I no longer feel a need to be big or special, and I can just do what I love sharing insights and tools that others may find useful on their journey, helping people to go within and unlock their defences, so they too can find that inner peace and safety that most of us have been searching for our whole lives.

If you would like to find out more about what I do or the tools I use please visit my website – https://www.jodiannemsmith.com/

With love and appreciation for all our journeys and the challenges we face. Many blessings, Jodi-Anne

Upcoming Family constellations Workshops

Hi everyone,

With the upcoming easing of mask requirements in South Australia, we can finally start holding Family Constellations Workshops indoors again. I am so excited. I hope you can join me on 15 May 2022 and/or 26 June 2022 for a 1-day constellation workshop. I’m keeping numbers small, only 12 participants (5 constellations and 7 representatives), so book in quickly if you would like to attend.

I hope you are well,

Many blessings,

Jodi-Anne

How to move through your deepest wounds and fears from childhood patterning?

girl in white long sleeve shirt and black skirt sitting on swing during day time
Photo by Skitterphoto on Pexels.com

(I asked this question and received the below answer via automatic writing 26 Nov 2021. Some of it is specific to me, but the guidance on the healing process is relevant to all so I thought I’d share it. I hope you find it useful.)

Your deepest wounds are those core hurts that you experienced as a child, those events and feelings that cut you like a knife and have been bleeding ever since. When wounded this deeply it affects your whole life. Part of you is frozen in pain, terror, rage, and fear. Part of you is stuck, trapped, hidden away and you spend a lot of your life force energy keeping it buried and building self-defence mechanisms to protect yourself from ever being hurt like that again. You live in fear of what could occur and pain from what did occur and there is little room left for joy, fun, friendship, love, trust, surrender and growth.

It takes a lot of courage to dismantle these defences, to open up to love, to live life with an open and unguarded heart, to return to your original state of innocence and joy. The vulnerability involved in risking exposure, connection, the possibility of more hurt, rejection, or loss can feel too much to give in to, to surrender and step into. This is why many people stay stuck their whole lives. They stay frozen internally, numbing their pain and the disconnection from their true self and heart with addictions and other distractions, such as keeping busy, fighting for some cause, working too much or being of service helping others while continuing to neglect their own needs. Sound familiar???

To move past this, to heal and relax and enjoy life there is no magic wand to cure it all. You have to shift it bit by bit, layer by layer, to release out the stuck, stagnant energy, to feel and release the emotions, to comfort and rescue the younger selves who went through it, to show them you have survived, you made it through and you’re doing okay. You have to start taking care of yourself, honouring your needs for rest, play, pleasure, connection with self, others and Earth. You need to make yourself your top priority, to eat well, exercise, have fun, rest and recreate.

You see healing occurs at the rate your body can process and integrate it. If you are pushing yourself too hard, if you are exhausted, empty, collapsing in overwhelm and despair or angry and rageful at feeling so bad despite all you do, if you are in one of these overactivated, exhausted scenarios then your body is not capable of processing and healing your deepest traumas. You simply don’t have the energy or internal strength to face, feel and release it.

So to heal your deepest wounds you really have to stop your overactive, distraction-filled lifestyle and create space and time for going within, connecting to your body, listening to its messages, feeling and breathing through the emotions, connecting with, supporting and nurturing your younger selves.

You know the techniques needed. You know how to guide yourself and others to do this release work. You just have to be patient and take it day by day, week by week, step by step. Your body lets up the residue it feels you are ready to process. It only lets it up when it feels you are capable of handling it. Otherwise, it stays locked in your cells, buried in your body, waiting for when you are ready. If you want to move through your deepest patterns you need to help your body to feel safe, to trust you are ready to handle it, to face it.

Tension and Trauma Releasing Exercises (TRE) helps greatly here as it calms your nervous system out of fight, flight, and freeze back into calm, social engagement. It helps to release the stress, tension and trauma in a gentle way, shaking it out, releasing it so your body can relax, your mind can calm and your breathing can deepen. As you start to feel safer within it is easier to feel the emotions and clear them out as they no longer seem so big or intense.

Yes, it is challenging as deeper layers of conditioning surface and you reach your core wound, the one that hurt the most. Of course, it was this one that was buried the deepest and will be the last to surface before you breakthrough to a more peaceful life no longer affected so much by the past. Of course, it gets harder in some ways the more you heal. But even though the issue arising is harder you have the tools, the knowledge and skills to process it, to breathe through it and to integrate the shifts and changes.

So have faith it will shift. Keep tremoring, using your TRE and doing your embodiment practices, yoga, meditation, time in nature, time with friends, etc. Keep comforting your heart, body and younger selves when triggered. Keep doing what you are doing and face whatever arises knowing it is shifting out, that more and more of your body is clear from the pain, that there is less frozen energy inside, that your body is getting healthier each day as you drop out of fight, flight, freeze (sympathetic) survival mode and into rest, digest, repair (ventral vagal parasympathetic mode).

You are doing what needs to be done. You just need to be patient, to nurture yourself and rest, so your body can integrate the shifts. Stillness, rest is key, connecting with your body, feeling and releasing it all is key. You know what to do, it just takes longer than you would like, that’s all. Trust your process. You had a severe amount of childhood trauma to clear and it does take time and energy to move through it. This is your work for yourself and to assist others. You had to experience it fully, deeply to be able to understand what others go through to be able to help them process their hurts and come back to their authentic selves, their pure hearts, and a state of joy, with connection to self, others and Earth. It is all okay, all happening as it needs to. Trust your body and its wisdom. Keep doing what you are doing and celebrate the freedom and liberation you feel more of the time now. Celebrate the progress rather than be annoyed at the residue. You will clear it out. You will live your life more fully.

If you have suffered extreme wounding as a child healing becomes the major task of your life. It doesn’t matter what you had hoped to do in life. You have to surrender that and work with what is. You have to honour your body and meet its needs. You have to give to yourself what you missed out on so you do feel loved, heard, seen, accepted and cared for. That’s your job. That’s your purpose, to come back to wholeness and peace. The rest of life is superficial by comparison.

So don’t compare yourself to others. You have no choice in the sense that pain from childhood persists. It won’t stay buried. You have to feel and release it. You have to face it eventually. Most do they just need to learn the skills of how to heal, how to process it and shift it out of their bodies. This is where you excel and it is what you will do, teaching others for the rest of your life. You will love it and find it very rewarding. Blessed BE.

Doing Tension and Trauma Releasing Exercises (TRE) helps you to clean your internal house.

yellow concrete house

Inside of us, we have all the emotional residue, the stress, tension, trauma and unfelt emotions that we’ve bottled up inside. If we use the analogy of a home it’s like we have filled up our spare rooms and it has overflowed into our living areas making them cluttered and less enjoyable to be in.

This residue, this clutter shows up as physical pain, sore muscles, even tight shoulders, necks and backs. In its more severe forms, it shows up as frozen shoulders, shallow breathing, lowered immune systems, digestive disorders, and if left to worsen this can lead to a range of diseases. This is because when our body is in the fight, flight or freeze, survival mode, it doesn’t focus on restoration and recovery. It’s preoccupied with scanning for danger, being hypervigilant and on edge, ready to flee, fight, freeze at any hint of danger, real or imagined. Over time this takes an adverse toll on our bodies.

When there is deep emotional pain or trauma locked into our bodies it is like a mould in the bathroom. If we don’t deal with it then it spreads and it affects our ability to breathe deeply. It lowers our health. Tension and Trauma Releasing Exercises (TRE) can help us to shift out these blocked emotions, traumas, stresses and tensions. But you want to do it gently, bit by bit, befriending your nervous system, helping your body to feel safe, held, looked after and cared for. You want to be kind to yourself as you shake out all this old residue.

Just like when we spring clean, we need to open the curtains, look inside those unused spaces and sort through what’s been hidden away in there. We have to acknowledge it and let some of it go. In the body’s case, this involves feeling some of the emotions as they shift out, allowing parts of our body that have been numb, disconnected, to come back online. We need to reinhabit them. If it becomes intense or overwhelming then we slow down. We use other tools and processes to support our body and mind to integrate the shifts and changes.

Just like mould in a house we have to use special care to get rid of it, to clean it out. We have to open the windows and let air through. We have to reduce any moisture and fix any leaks so that the room can dry out. We have to use mould cleaner, bleach or vinegar to wipe away the stains and once cleaned thoroughly, then and only then can we repaint over it. Because if we do it too soon the mould will come back.

Our traumas and emotional pains are similar. We can’t keep them locked away, pretending they are not there. We have to learn how to feel them, breathe through them, support the younger versions of us who feel them and set them free of the pain. We need to reclaim all the spaces within our body, so our energy and vitality can flow freely, joyously, fully and our body can drop out of survival mode back into rest and digest mode, where it can focus on living more fully again. Where we enjoy interacting with others and feel safe, playful and joyful.

TRE can be your partner in this journey back to wholeness, back to living within your body, not escaping out of it with dissociation or numbing it with addictions, busyness and distraction. It’s time to come home to you, to spring clean, redecorate and enjoy life more fully being comfortable in your own skin.

If you don’t have the tools to clean your own house or the mould is too big a job for you to face, then you always have the option to pay a professional to clean it for you, to partner with you on your journey. With our analogy this is the difference between doing TRE on your own and doing it with a TRE provider, like me, helping you to go within, feel and heal. If you’d like a safe space, a comforting support person to cheer you on and make sure you’re on the right track then having TRE sessions with a TRE provider is a good idea. It can make a huge difference to how fast you heal as your body may need that support person to feel safe enough to release and you may need it to find the courage to go within and look at some of those darker corners, those unused spaces within where the hardest emotions and traumas have been hidden away.

Over 5 million people have learnt TRE. It is taught in over 60 countries worldwide. TRE can be learned via an appointment in person or online. A minimum of 3 sessions is recommended to ensure that you have learned how to self-regulate your tremoring. You can bring a friend and share the cost! Once you have learnt how to self-regulate you can continue using TRE at home for the rest of your life as part of your self-care routine. You do not have to see a TRE provider regularly. However, you may choose to have occasional or regular sessions with a TRE provider if you want more guidance or support with your tremoring process.

TRE can also be learnt in workshops and through a free TRE online course. Please note the free online course is not suitable for:

  • Anyone with psychological/psychiatric conditions that require strict regulation
  • Anyone with fragile psychological defences
  • Anyone who has a history of complex trauma (near-death experiences, abuse, violence, major accidents, natural disasters, surgeries, severe losses, etc)
  • Anyone with physical conditions that require strict regulation
  • Anyone with physical or medical limitations.

For anyone in the above categories, it is best to consult with a TRE provider, like me, to make sure TRE is suitable for you and to teach you how to use it safely. To learn more about TRE click here.

Many blessings,

Jodi-Anne

Develop a grounded, beneficial connection with your family system.

Hi everyone,

I drew this picture after a guided meditation while camping recently and to me it truly captures the gifts that Family Constellations enables within you.

I used to feel quite alone and weak. I had a very strong abandonment story from childhood. I’ve done lots of work to shift that and Tension and Trauma Release Exercises (TRE) has helped enormously to let go of the stress, tension and trauma from my body. The result is I now feel much stronger and connected to my family – past, present and future. Instead of the pain and challenges from the past, I now connect into the blessings, love and support of my ancestors. I feel more strongly grounded, rooted, centred. I feel able to stand tall knowing I have their support and that I’m never truly alone.

It’s no longer all about me. I am one small part of the story of my family. I live because they survived their hurts the best they could with the pain and burdens they carried. I’m grateful for my life, my experiences and the healing that has occurred which enables me now to be present, playful, joyful and to know that the future is good. I’m capable and supported to face whatever comes. I’m anchored into the Earth and her supportive energies. So just like the tree I can bend and be more flexible when storms come.

The storms may come but I know they will pass and the rain will enable the rainbows and blossoming of the flowers and animals that we share Mother Earth with. It’s a time of harvest, of strength, of goodness. And I will be forever grateful that TRE has helped me to clear out the old energies and Family Constellations has helped me to release the old story, to see the strengths of my family system and to receive their love and support. I will use these gifts to help others move forward in their healing journeys.

While I may not be an amazing artist the picture does convey a lot of how I’m now feeling and I’m grateful for all the colour and playfulness in my life.

Many blessings,

Jodi-Anne

Why do we fear rejection so much?

In the past rejection meant death, whether it was the witch hunts, the torture chamber or being left to fend for yourself in the wild as your tribe moved on without you. To be isolated and alone meant death, not just sadness and loss, death.

In today’s world rejection is less serious, a loss of a friend, a job, a group. They can easily be replaced. It is not life-threatening. It only feels like it is or like something serious. In reality, it is not.

The intensity of our fear of rejection depends on how much we were hurt when little. If our parents were there for us and we felt accepted, seen, heard, and loved, we will have a sense of secure attachment, love, and safety when interacting with others.

But if our parents weren’t consistently available to us or our interactions with them led us to feel not seen, heard or accepted, we will have pain interacting with others. If we felt rejected by our parents, not good enough for them, that is a deeply painful process to experience. It is this pain of not being loved and accepted fully by our parents, the devastation of that which then taints our interaction with others. We fear feeling that pain again.

But the reality is as an adult we are not dependent on others like we were as a child on our parents. We needed our parents to care for us, to provide for us. As adults, we can give that to ourselves. So rejection is not as serious or life-threatening anymore. It is just the emotional pain of our past experiences with our parents that leads it to feel so serious.

We can do healing work to heal those wounds so that we feel more secure and safe within. We can meet our own needs and reconnect with our body, releasing the stress, tension and trauma, so that we feel safe and secure within and can be more relaxed and open with our interactions with others. When the wounds are healed it no longer feels so dangerous and we can react playfully and joyfully as we meet others, knowing we are safe and can have fun. Tension and Trauma Release Exercises (TRE) can help us to release those tensions and complete the old trauma activations freeing us to enjoy life more fully.

The reality is you may be rejected many times throughout your life. It may be lovers, it may be parents ashamed of your choices. It may be misunderstandings between friends or work colleagues. Do not react with anger or hurt, simply move on, accept it for what it is and move on.

While rejection feels like a loss, like a forced change of direction or focus, it is actually occurring for your highest good. That person or situation has served you well. They have shaped the next chapter in your story. They have helped you redirect your efforts to something or someone else. 

Not everyone will be in your life forever. People come and go, they grow and evolve, and their vibration shifts. If your vibrations conflict, you will part. It is not actually personal. It is energetic and it is meant to be.

A deep loss, of a loved one or parent or child, for instance, may cripple you emotionally for quite some time. It helps you to release sadness and grief. It helps you question your life and what you are doing with it. This may lead you to listen to your heart more and do something you care more about, instead of just going through the motions, doing things that society tells you to do. 

The loss prompts significant change and it serves you. It is a gift, not a tragedy. A gift, remember that look for the good that comes out of all your experience and it is easier to accept.

A minor misunderstanding with someone you barely know, which results in the end of the blossoming friendship, shows you that rejection, while a little hurtful, isn’t the end of the world. Life goes on, your normal life is still intact, just that person will no longer be a part of it. This shows you rejection is okay, there is no need to fear it so much or give your power away to other people so much.

You are actually okay on your own. You don’t need people as much as you think you do. It is not the ancient battlefield or tribal village anymore. There are large numbers of people out there who are willing to be your friend, your partner, your lover, your work colleagues. When the time is right you meet them. You don’t need to search, you don’t need to try and force it or effort it or think too much about it or what you will and won’t say so people will accept you and won’t hurt you, reject you, abandon or abuse you. Just be yourself. That is all you need to do. Those that are meant to join with you will. Those that aren’t, won’t. It is as simple as that. So stop walking on eggshells around other people. Be yourself and be proud.

Rejection is not a death sentence anymore. It is simply one of many events in life that help shift your perspective and help you evolve, as you travel along this journey called life. Blessed BE, Amen.

In this video, Jodi-Anne explores ‘Why do we fear rejection so much?’ It is one of over 100 questions she has asked about life and channelled an answer through automatic writing. All of these answers to questions about life, how to live peacefully and happily are available for free on the ‘Life Insights‘ page of her website.

How childhood trauma leads to addiction

This is a brilliant video summarising how childhood trauma can lead to addictive tendencies, and what is needed to heal it. I love Gabor Mate’s work and his way of explaining things. Below is a summary of some of the key points:

  • Trauma is not what happens to you. It’s what happens inside you as a result of traumatic experiences.
  • Trauma is the disconnection from your self, your emotions, your body and your gut sense or intuition. You lose connection to yourself and how you authentically feel.
  • This disconnection results in difficulty being in the present moment and in the development of negative views of your world and of yourself. It results in a defensive view of other people.
  • Addiction is not the primary problem. It’s an attempt to solve a problem, which it does temporarily, but it creates even more problems in the long term.
  • Recovery is rediscovering, finding your self again, reconnecting to your self, your body, your emotions, your gut sense and intuition. You reconnect to who you authentically are and how you authentically feel.
  • Recovery and healing are about reconnection.

There are many ways to release trauma and reconnect with your body. One of the main methods I use is Tension and Trauma Release Exercises (TRE). I am qualified to teach TRE to individuals and within a few months will be qualified to teach it to groups. If you’d like to learn more about TRE and how it can help you to reconnect with your body please visit my TRE page.

Gabor Mate – How childhood trauma leads to addiction (9:09 mins)