I HAVE TO DO IT ALL DIFFERENTLY –
it’s such a big job but I’m not giving up!
PREVIOUS: The Problem Opposites -#2
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“REVERSING our Behavior IMPROVES our Life” (cont)
C. HEALTHY Opposites
So, what can we do?
• In order to make the desired changes we need correct info. Like any new language, we have to learn the vocabulary, grammar, syntax & rhythm of healthy actions. Actions that lead to any type of success are usually the exact ‘Positive-Opposite’ of our life-long patterns. Yes, we’ve tried to do things differently, but to no avail because we’ve been doing the ‘Negative-Opposite’, with great effort & sincerity, but which always ends in failure
• We know it’s hard to change. ACoAs hate change! It makes us feel unsafe. Taking positive actions can temporarily make us feel crazy, in danger & we can temporarily regress to immature ways – as if we haven’t grown at all! Recovery asks us to let go of old ways of thinking & doing – which seems very threatening. Healthy functioning goes against all our Toxic Rules & disobeying them feels like we’re betraying the family. What we in fact must do is to become totally, unequivocally loyal to ourselves, since we didn’t get nourished correctly from the beginning. Our ONLY job is to heal the Wounded Child & bring out the best of our Natural Child
Exp: Picture that you’re a highly trained plumber with a fully stocked tool bag which may be worn & dirty, but has always been available & made your work possible. You’ve been using those tools for a long time, replacing old parts, stopping drips & duck taping leaky pipes, hoping to avoid a flood. You’ve been on the job so long you can’t imagine doing anything else!
• Then one day you’re told the old-style plumbing is being replaced with an all new infrastructure & your specific skills are not needed anymore! You can throw away that raggedy tool bag & carry an elegant briefcase with fewer but more refined new instruments! You’re shocked, even devastated. You know how to use the old instruments – what are you going to do with a briefcase? You don’t know how to read the new rules & or how to implement them. What are you going to do without having those cracked pipes to tinker with?? Who are you going to be now!!??
• Shifting from Negative to Positive ways of living is done thru:
— Process, another one of those things ACoAs hate! and we need practical examples of correct thinking & acting: Healthy Helping // Healthy Boundaries // Recovery – Is
// ACoAs & Healthy Rules // My Rights // Responding Positively to Events
// Self-Esteem // Healthy Adult / Loving Parent // 33 Things I’ve Learned
✶ When our Inner Child is on the same page as the Healthy Adult /Parent (the ‘Unit’) then we’re able to take the actions we want & that are best for us. With time the new actions become the new norm!
From NEGATIVE to POSITIVE Opposite (from #1 to #2 on chart):REVIEW – it helps to remember that:
• Most people in the world are damaged. Without healing everyone is run alternately by 2 ego states: the ‘Bad’ voice (Introject) & the Wounded Child. Many people have a functioning Adult, but rarely do we meet someone with a Loving Parent voice. Without the L.P. it’s hard for anyone to make long-lasting improvements
• While many of us across the country & the world legitimately have limited options for help & support where we live, now we have many new possibilities via the internet & books that can improve our lives
• It’s the younger, damaged part of us making these negative choices – by training, to be loyal to our family & prevent punishment. This is normal for everyone
• To shift into Positive Opposites ACoAs need 2 new ego states to work as the ‘Unit’: the Healthy Adult that deals with facts, & the L.P. in charge of nurturing & guidance. The Unit must take over the responsibility of running our lives, & care for our wounded part – away from the ‘bad voice’ that beats us up & holds us back
✶ As Healthy Adults, we can choose what actually works & what doesn’t – in the present – rather than what we learned originally.
Using T.E.A. (thoughts, emotions & actions) our goal in Recovery is to:
• notice that our Es are, & as much as possible, manage them in safe ways
• keep track of our Ts, re-enforcing the realistic & healthy ones, while changing the toxic beliefs – or at least not obeying them!
• observe our As, especially the ones that are self-defeating, noticing their practical & emotional consequence, so that we WANT to change them – and re-enforcing the good ones, no matter how small!
RESULTS of Positive Opposite actions:
➼ Taking Positive Opposite actions add up, giving us a sense of worth, permission to be our True Self, be part of the human race & actually enjoy life!
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