5 myths of the healing journey| 6.15.2022
In this episode. Kristen debunks the 5 myths of the healing journey and gives you the truth of what the healing process look like.
- 5 myths of the healing journey
- The most important part of the healing journey
- Things to write in your post-it notes
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Welcome to the close the chapter podcast. I am Kristen Boice a licenced Marriage and Family Therapist with a private practice Pathways to Healing Counselling. Through conversations, education, strategies and shared stories. We will be closing the chapter on all the thoughts, feelings, people and circumstances that don't serve you anymore. And open the door to possibilities and the real you. You won't want to miss an episode, so be sure to subscribe
Welcome to this week, Close the Chapter Podcast. I am thrilled that you are here joining me for another episode on your healing journey and just to learn, expand your mindset, open your heart up and take it in. This is a podcast where you can come as you are come with all your thoughts and feelings and emotions. It's okay, it's okay for you to have different opinions. It's okay for you to believe, think and feel what ever comes up. That's called differentiation. And I welcome that, and I welcome you the way you are. So thank you for being here with me. Today's episode is an important one because there's so many myths out there about the healing journey, what it should look like what it does look like. And I wanted to just de bunk some of the myths and give you the truth and the reality of what the healing work looks like. So I'm gonna break it down into five myths of what the healing journey looks like. And really apply some practical ways to look at your own healing process. And ultimately, there's a secret ingredient, then a throw in there that you're going to want to know about that will help you as you're embarking on discovering more of your authentic self, you're maybe giving up people pleasing, maybe you're stopping placating or pretending maybe you're done withdrawing, avoiding minimising denying, bypassing whatever pattern that looks like that sort of has protected you in the past and now is maladaptive. We're going to break through that. So we can come together and rally each other and encourage each other in this work. It helps so much to have a community. And I hope you can come here and listen to this podcast and maybe really listen to episodes binge listened to it to support you to hear truths, and help you break through those defences and remind you of why you're doing this work. One year cycle breaker. So welcome. I know it's not easy. 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Okay, so we're gonna jump in with the five myths that you might have heard about on the healing journey. Okay, so the first one is, there's a finish line as the first myth that you're going to start this healing journey and the shame won't come up again. You're not going to feel the same way about things which can be true, it can transform how you feel the intensity can decrease. We can even walk through and change issues and patterns. In my opinion, there isn't a finish line. Now, do you need to drink self help from a firehose? Absolutely not, that isn't healthy, that's not giving yourself some space to just be. Or maybe you need to have fun, and be playful and have some joy. Many of us didn't learn how to do that. And so we need to make time for that. This really is about a healthy relationship with growth, a healthy relationship with doing your own work. And I want to say that people come to therapy, and they think that once they work on something, they're not going to be triggered again. Well, let me give you an example. So that's gonna lead me to miss number two, and these are going to kind of we're going to ebb and flow through these myths. But number two is you never feel like you're regressing or going backwards. Okay, it's not trail. I mean, I'm in therapy. And let's be honest, I mean, let's be real. I absolutely feel like I have worked on this issue for years. Why is it still bothering me? I should be over this by now. And I have to take a deep breath and recenter because I know the truth. The truth is, sometimes there's going to be reoccurring, hurt, pain, pains, activating triggers, however you want to frame it, and that's okay. It's okay. It doesn't mean you're doing therapy wrong, it doesn't mean you're not doing things, right. It doesn't mean you failed. It doesn't mean you're less than. So what I see a lot with clients, and in my own life is we think we've worked on an issue with maybe one of our parents, again, I'm not a fan of picking on parents, because that disempowers you, I'm just about focusing on the reality of systems and dynamics, and it's your reality, it's what you lived in your truth. And sometimes they don't line up with other people's realities, meaning they have a different opinion than you. And that's okay. So what I see people feel like they've worked on the relationship with a parent, let's say it's their father. And then they're around their family, again, for a holiday, a birthday, or a graduation or a family event or just a dinner, all of a sudden, they feel like the little child, they were around their parent in the same dynamics are there because you've been doing the work, perhaps they haven't, and not to pick on them or be in a righteous position. It's just the reality of the situation. And so you find yourself being triggered by the same thing. And let me give you a personal example, because of what I'm hearing from listeners you is you like the personal examples, they're helpful to you. They make it more relatable to showing in practical ways how this looks. So for example, you all know I work on my relationship with both my parents but my mother in particular, and I have done EMDR eye movement, desensitisation reprocessing, I'm also an EMDR. Therapist, I love it, I believe in it. And I've done a lot of inner child work. I have done somatic experiencing. I've done brainspotting I'm also in my team is also EMDR and brainspotting trained. And those are modalities to treat trauma, anxiety, depression, multitude of anything sports related anxieties. And when sometimes I'm around my mom, or I get a text from her, I can feel my nervous system, going into a response. Now it might be less intense because I've done all this work. And then I'm like, Ah, I feeling that same dismissed, bypassed, minimised feeling. And it's not even that she's intentionally trying to do that. It's an automatic response that almost takes place in my body. Sometimes this gets healed, and you won't have the same response. It'll change. In this case, for me, it has definitely gotten less, but it's still there. I can still feel the twinge in my stomach when I get that text that basically says, What are you doing? Why haven't you responded, and it's a barrage. It's a barrage. And I can go into guilt and shame in feeling like a bad person. That's what I've been working on in therapy, even though intellectually I know I'm not. And so as I'm working through this, and I'm identifying the shame, I'm able to offer myself some compassion and go, it's okay. You're not responsible for her feelings. You're not responsible for making her feel better. Now, certainly. Could I acknowledge that she's sad? Yes. I can't care take her like I did as a child. I can't do that. Because I need to do that for my children. I need to offer my children I need to be a parent. I can't parent my mother. And so there's a big difference. And that's called the paren. To fight child. You can go back and listen to that episode. Point being is I still get that twinge that stomach feeling when I get the text. Is there something wrong with me having that feeling? Absolutely not, it's okay. And what I want to say to you is if you're on this healing journey, and sometimes you feel like you took 20 steps backwards, like you're making progress, and all of a sudden, you feel like you're taking 20 steps backwards, that's normal part of growth, that's normal part of healing, it doesn't mean necessarily, you will never have that trigger again, or that activated feeling in your body, I know what to do now, and I have it, that's the key, I can now caretake, my younger self, take a deep breath.
Because you know, I'm all about taking the deep breath. Because you have to take that pause, before you respond, and then I might vent it out if no one's around. And that's okay. I might write out how I feel, either in my notes section on my phone, or in my journal, to get it out to process my feelings around it. And then I get to decide if I'm going to respond. And a lot of times I don't, because there's no good that comes from it, it becomes an argument. And then when I feel like I can handle it, and sometimes I, you know, will say a little prayer over it, I will get a leading about it. And then I might text back, it just depends on what I'm able to offer and what I'm not able to offer and what I'm able to handle and not handle, because my first priority is taking care of my kids. And so I give you full permission to connect with your nervous system and know what you can and can't handle and then tend to that. So breathing, processing your emotions, you acknowledging your emotions, and then giving myself that's one of the other myths was actually number five, no, number four, is there shoulds you know, there's a bunch of shoulds in healing work. That's not true. There's no shoulds shoulds a shame shoulds is shame. It's really changed the should to a cut. If you've heard me speak I say that all the time. shoulds is shame. And in the therapy process, or even just your healing journey, there are no shoulds shoulds is tapping into your inner child and I talked about that Two episodes ago about the different there's adaptive child, the Wounded Child and the wise adult self Terry reels and BF melodies work is really important. And so that's the other myth, you should be better. Any kind of shirts like the myth of should, it should look a certain way. That's a falsity there is no should way it looks, it looks the way it looks for you. It's an individual process. Healing is an very individual process, it takes you time, it takes you time, most people takes tonnes of time, it's taken me years and years, I'm still on the journey, because again, there is no finish line. Okay, so we're gonna go to number three, my relationships will improve. That's Myth number three of the myths of the healing journey, that if I do all this healing work, my relationships will improve, they may or may not improve. And that's what scares people, they may or may not improve, they may or may not improve, if you don't do any work, this is the truth about of any kind of journey you're on. There are no guarantees, there are no guarantees. And I know that's a hard reality. So wish there was a guarantee, like your relationship would be better. Your will be together with your partner forever. I don't know, whatever that guarantee, you're looking for whatever certainty, there are no guarantees in the healing journey, there's guarantee in life that things will change every day, that there will be change every single day, that is a guarantee that change is inevitable. So your relationships may or may not improve the most important part of the healing journey. Is the relationship with yourself. Does the relationship with yourself improve? Do you feel better about yourself and again, this isn't an all or nothing that's going to be sustainable, like, Oh, my relationship with myself is forever change. And that may be true. It's also true that the relationship with yourself unfolds moment by moment. And that's okay. But overall, we want to feel better about ourselves. We want a healthier relationship with yourself where you're working on those beliefs that you've maybe been conditioned into, or maybe you've been projected on to. So a lot of maybe shame was displaced onto you from your childhood. The truth is, at the end of therapy, the goal is for you to feel better about you. And that will transcend to all your relationships as a parent, as a partner, as a friend, as a co worker, as a citizen. When you feel better about yourself. And again, it's not all the time, your relationships improve. You show up differently, you show up more present more engaged, because when I don't feel good about myself, I kind of want to hide and go into hiding. I guess that's the best way to put it because I'm processing how I'm feeling I don't really want Talk to anybody just kind of want to
check out is really what I want is to check out. And that's how you might feel during the healing process as you kind of want to check out just notice that and give yourself that nurturing that you really longed for as a child. In acknowledgment, here's what I do know to be true, is that if you stick with the healing process, my guarantee is, you'll be thankful that you did the work, what people regret the most, is waiting to do the work. That's probably the biggest regret I hear from clients is I wish I would have done this sooner, oh, brings tears to my eyes, because I have clients and their 70s and 80s Oh, I love it so much. It doesn't matter how old you are. It's never too late to start, the biggest regret people have in their lives is waiting too long. And what I say to that is the time wasn't right for you, you weren't ready, you are ready to do this work. There was too many other external circumstances. And now you're ready. And that sets your heart on fire to stay with it. You're able to tolerate the hard the discomfort, the fear, the sadness, and all the emotions are able to tolerate them now because you really want to heal yourself, improve your relationships, whether it's with your children, your partner, your friends, family, it doesn't matter, you're committed because you know that the investment you make in yourself will pay off in dividends, it will pay off in dividends. And when people are dating, I just was on a podcast. Last week Kumar say it out loud. She was on my podcast, it was a great conversation. And on her podcast, we talked about relationships. And we talked about the key ingredient for healthy relationships. And guess what it is self awareness, and then ownership and really taking responsibility for your own thoughts, feelings and behaviour. And if you have two people willing to do that, that is the recipe for helping each other grow, evolve and be the best versions of yourself. It starts with you deciding that. So it's never ever too late to start this healing journey. That's the other myth. It's too late. That's I'm getting out of order on my miss. But I'm adding this in as we're going through this. It's too late for me to start the healing work. It's too late for me to change. That is simply not true. It is not too late to change, and it's never too late to start the healing work. You can start right here right now, the fact that you're listening to this podcast says a whole lot about you and your willingness to heal yourself, work on yourself, acknowledge your patterns, your behaviour, how you shown up how you've interacted, believe me, we've all had tantrums. And it's time we take responsibility for our tantrums. It's time we stop blaming, shaming, ignoring, suppressing numbing, trying to fill that empty part in us and start doing something about it. So I cheer you on if you're on this journey, and it's hard, I'm here with you. I know because I'm on the journey to I cannot be a good therapist, if I'm not doing my own work. I mean, you could. It's only gonna take someone so far. I gotta walk the walk that's called authentic integration, and who you see me out on the street, and here is the same person. And that's how you begin to build trust with somebody is who they are. And they they're walking the walk to. And being relatable in that way is so important because we want other people to go oh my gosh, me too. I'm really struggling right now. I am sad and I'm lonely and I'm depressed. And I'm afraid I'll be alone forever. And whatever you're fearing, get it out. Share it with somebody write it out in a journal. I am so passionate about journaling. That's why I have the free journal. I get so much more clarity when I write it out. And so part of your healing process is no longer pretending you're okay. No longer pretending you're okay, no longer saying you're fine feelings inside not express no longer, placating and people pleasing to try to get likes or avoid rejection or abandonment because our deepest fear I think is to be alone, to not be loved. And I really, really want you to know that you are loved. Like I wish I could get in a room with you and go, You are loved and that's why I like Mr. Rogers so much. I know that's cheesy. He was cheesy at times, but I'm telling you, he just came to show love. I'm watching this Docu series, I guess it's now a I don't know if it's even a docu series about Julia Child on HBO Max. It's called Julia. Now is it the most fast moving documentary series I mean they are acting in it but Docu series I guess I should call it no but what it has done is it is inspired me to get curious about how In the world did she show up and create so much love and support around her, once she was just herself to her father was very critical and judgmental of her. I mean, extremely judgmental and critical, and of her husband, it was never good enough. And she was never good enough. And what I noticed about diving into her childhood, and how she showed up is she wanted other people to experience joy, and love. And that's what she brought to the table. She was very smart, she brought joy and love. And I like to be inspired by people that helped me grow and inspire me to be a better person. And are you that person? Are you a person that is growing and evolving, because it's hard to inspire other people, if you're not willing to do your own work, the fact that you're listening to this podcast is probably a moot point because you're willing to do your work, or otherwise, you'll be listening to close the chapter, and know that your work inspires other people. So when you want to give up on this, and you think this is way too hard, I'm too afraid to unpack my childhood, I'm too afraid to go back to some trauma, I want to encourage you to say if you don't free yourself from it, it's going to keep you bound up, locked up and shackled. And when you can get the courage to say you know what, that's no longer gonna drive me it's not I'm going to empower myself become self aware work through my hurt, my pain, my fear, my trauma, my grief, my loss, and I'm going to heal that. So I can transform my life, there's no better gift you can give to yourself and other people. Which leads me to the next myth. I've no, I've listed more than I originally started with my five, I won't want to give up on the process. Okay, can we just say that is such a shame. Nobody says that, first of all, but that is a myth that I won't want to give up. And I'll just persevere. You know, is this like running a marathon? But there is no finish line? So, yes, people want to give up when they run a marathon? Not everybody, will you have thoughts on wanting to give up, especially when I have couples in my office, not that they don't want to give up but they want to kind of feel powerless and hopeless. And sometimes that's the case like, it's just not going to work out. It's once too far gone. But I would say they waited too long. There's too many patterns or deceptions or hurt and pain that have accumulated over time. But for two people that want to do the work, it absolutely can work to people that want to grow to people that want to take responsibility to people that equally say, Okay, I contributed or they're owning their part in it, it can work out, I've seen it umpteen times. But when people want to just throw in the towel, because this is too hard. Yeah, it's hard. It's very hard going through therapy, or facing the pain of the past. It's not easy. That's why people want to drink and take pills and shop and gamble, and sex. And there's so many addictions, but we want to fill that food, we want to fill it instead of facing it. And when you face it, instead of fill it, I promise you, you will eventually feel free. So instead of filling it, you're going to face it, which is going to lead to your freedom. So will you want to give up Yeah, I wanted to throw in the towel so many times. And what I knew to be true is I want to break patterns. I don't want to recreate the same pattern from my childhood. I don't want to swing the pendulum and swing it the other way. And that's unhealthy too. I want to face my shame, my emotions, my pain, my patterns that are not the healthiest. I want to take radical ownership from my part, not over own, not do the prenta fied child, not the codependency stuff, where I just own what's mine. So you might want to quit. And I want to tell you when you're in that place, pause, breathe, explore, what is it that you want to quit? What is it that seems too hard, and it's probably the pain, it's probably fear. And fear wants to take you into places that aren't necessarily true. Now it's rooted in the past, when you can be present in the here and now and say, You know what, I want to stick with this. And this does not mean take breaks. I mean, give yourself all the permission to take breaks. I'm a big break taker. So if you need a timeout, you need to go play, you need to listen to music. Of course you have to have fun in your life, like this isn't all heavy. Just know that sometimes you might want to give up and I encourage you if you need to listen to this again, when you feel like giving up. I just want to tell you, I see you, I hear you and take a deep breath. Give yourself some space to take a break and then come back. It will be worth it. Number well I have number five but I think we're on line number seven but number five is healing should be easy and flowy well, sometimes that's true. Sometimes you're in a flow and it comes through you in your gut Hitting highs and it's clicking. And then other times, it's like you are in the mud. And it seems hard, you're trudging through it, you're like it going up a mountain, and you think I'll never get there. And it requires us to get out of our comfort zone. And trust the process requires us to get out of our comfort zone and trust the process and increase our tolerance for discomfort. So we're not reaching for the wine, we're not reaching for the button on Amazon, even though we could just quickly hit the button, and it's in our shopping cart, and we hit order, or we are looking for that love addiction to say Do you love me? Do I matter? Am I important, when you can say sometimes it's easy flowing. And sometimes it's not. And that's true, that life sometimes is easy flowing. And sometimes life isn't. And when we can tolerate both, we can then lean into that discomfort and increase our window of tolerance. For it all. I live in the grey, I'm a very swim deep in the grey, I'm not an all or nothing. Sometimes I can get like that, by the way, all or nothing black or white, right? wrong, good bad, because we all have both inside of us. That's true, we have both inside of us. But we have a hard time acknowledging both. Here is one of the things I want to say. That's the secret ingredient.
And I'm going to tell you, we talked about self awareness is the key to leadership. It's the key to healthy relationships, radical ownership, and then taking action. And this is the other key because of my own therapy, I cannot tell you how much I want to criticise myself take full responsibility for everything, I want to blame myself, I'm not doing a good job, I'm not good enough. And the therapist will say, I think it'd be a little hard on yourself, or I don't think that's all of yours to own. And what that offers me. One is a different perspective. But two, it's very empathic. When she offers empathy. It's like something opens up inside me and I can go
okay, just take a breath, I have more clarity of thought, I am not swimming in my inner child so much. I have my wise adult self that can come through. And I'm telling you, when you can offer yourself that empathy, that nurturing that understanding the tenderness, the softness, it's life changing. And sometimes when I'm in my own shame, it's hard for me to give myself that and offer it to other people. So what I'm doing now, and I want to encourage you to do is take some post it notes out. So if you have access to post it notes, hit pause on this podcast, I want you to go grab your post it notes. And if you don't have post it notes, write it on a notebook, write it on a marker, not a permanent marker on your mirror in your bathroom. And I want you to write out two things. Okay, the first thing is I want you to write out just breathe. Why do I want you to write that out? That seems so simple, I want you to write that out. Because that's what's necessary for the healing journey is the breath and coming back to the breath over and over and over. And I know I've said this multitude of times, if you're a longtime listener, thank you so much. I'm so grateful for you. If you're new welcome. I'm very big into the breathing in, I have to remind myself, so I realised this week, I need to go back to putting notes on my mirror, just breathe to Cue my brain. And if you might need to put it in a notebook in your planner on your computer screen on your calendar in your car. Because if you have children, or you're in a partnership, it's on you. If you're getting dysregulated it's just on you've got to know again, I'm not an all or nothing thinker, there's different circumstances, but in general, it's our responsibility to get ourselves calm. And so I need that reminder, I need to Cue my brain. Number two thing I want you to write on your post it notes. And thank you Dr. Brene. Brown for this is I want you to say I give myself permission to and it might be say how I feel I give my Purcell permission to not have all together I give myself permission to not be so focused on my to do list I give myself permission to not say yes to everything. I give myself permission to not be the people pleasing friend, I give myself permission to ask for help. I give myself permission to say what I need with the family like okay, I need someone to unload the dishwasher, whatever that looks like. And then the third thing I'm adding to the post it notes, it's okay to so number one was to write just breathe. Number two is to write a permission slip, I give myself permission to and number three is to write out it's okay to feel your feelings. It's okay to say no same thing as the permission slips. So a little bit different. It's okay to feel my feelings. It's okay to be me. It's okay to not have it all together. It's okay to take a break from social media. It's okay to unfriend somebody, it's okay to no longer be in relationship with somebody, you get the idea. And I need you to put these post it notes up where you're going to see them on a regular basis, because it cues your brain helps your nervous system to reset. And it's one thing to put them up and then never look at them. Again, I'm going to encourage you to put them up and review them daily look at them. And if you need to give yourself permission to write more posts and put them up, do it, do it, please, we need cues for our brain to remind us about the journey of healing. It's not this 123 system. So be realistic about your expectations around the healing journey. Please don't make it an all or nothing, live a little bit more in the grey and start tolerating that a little bit more, you're gonna feel more secure in yourself. Give yourself compassion and empathy, and nurturing and tenderness and kindness. This is one of the hardest things for all of us to do. And give yourself all the permission slips you need to be you. So get your post it notes, get your journal out if you need a read, listen to this, go for it. I said so many myths. And I added bonus myths. I hope these are helpful to you. My whole goal for today's conversation was to say you're not doing it wrong. This isn't a gold star. This isn't for anybody else. Yes, the benefit every other people benefit from your work. This is your healing journey and everybody's looks different. So don't compare yourself to anybody else. Just know you in your willingness to face your pain is what it takes. I'm grateful for you. I love you. I am rooting for you. And just know you have support here. If you need it. Come back play these episodes again. And I'm so proud of you if you need to hear that, please. No, I am somebody needs to tell you. You are doing this. And I'm so proud of you. Keep going. Okay, can't wait to be with you again next week.
Have a good week. Thank you so much for listening to the close the chapter podcast. My hope is that you took home some actionable steps, along with motivation, inspiration and hope for making sustainable change in your life. If you enjoyed this episode, click the subscribe button to be sure to get the updated episodes every week and share with a friend or family member. For more information about how to get connected visit Kristen k r i s t e n d Boice b o ice.com. Thanks and have a great day.
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