The Gift of Feeling Grateful
“Gratitude” is the first thing on my list to be an empowered successful business woman, and why would that be? Well, when you’ve had the kind of life a lot of people have had, it can be really hard to feel grateful.
Jennifer, my client, was determined to share her passion with the world by networking and speaking; however, one thing was getting in the way of her dream of sharing her passion, she wasn’t able to build long lasting business relationships both online and offline with her potential clients (nor her peers). In fact, it didn’t seem to make any difference what effort she put in, she always seemed to find herself back safely at home and away from the computer finding any excuse whatsoever to stay away from running her business.
When we delved into her story a little deeper, she realized that she was really finding it awkward as she didn’t like others doing anything for her – she felt more comfortable doing things for them. Now this creates an energy imbalance between people and, over time, her peers started to feel uncomfortable with this and they started to drift away from her.
The bottom line was – she didn’t want anyone to do anything for her because she didn’t want to feel beholden to them; she felt uncomfortable showing them gratitude – she didn’t want to feel indebted to them.
And building relationships with potential clients was also essential for her business, of course, but she also found it hard to sell herself to them. She felt “not good enough” and “unworthy” to serve them.
Jennifer found that the word “grateful” had such a negative connotation to her. When someone told her “You should feel grateful! You do know that others have it worse than you?” it used to trigger her, and she said that she usually went through a number of different emotions and states of being, a downward spiral:
She felt bullied by them for saying that to her or even for reading a post on Facebook.
She rebelled against them – felt anger towards them – “what do they know? They haven’t lived my life!” kind of thoughts flowed through her head.
And then, she beat herself up for not feeling grateful. Saying things like “stupid idiot! Of course, you should feel grateful! Why aren’t you grateful?”
Then she felt awful and downtrodden, and sorry for herself because she not only had felt she had been beaten up by someone else, she had also beaten herself up.
And because of it, she now felt that once again, she “couldn’t do anything right” and “not good enough.” Her own feelings weren’t addressed or validated; therefore, she felt that she wasn’t important.
What’s going on here? Why on earth would she do this to herself, you might ask? Why on earth couldn’t she just simply feel grateful, for goodness sake?
Long and complicated story. Well, of course, Jennifer, like most emotionally abused children, had a long-complicated story. To make a very long story as short as possible, she came from a large dysfunctional family with no emotional management or support by the parents in the home.
Children don’t come with a guide book and the parents/siblings did the best they could. I would hazard a guess that Jennifer’s parents probably didn’t have any emotional management or support when they were children. And so, when the parents grew up, they weren’t able to emotionally connect and support their children; basically, the parents didn’t have a healthy emotionally mature role model as a child to help them feel supported, connected, and unconditionally loved to enable them to copy and learn from their parent’s behaviour; Jennifer’s parents (along with millions of other parents) weren’t able to, support and manage their children’s emotions and therefore build that emotional connection with their children to help them feel safe and secure.
And as a highly sensitive introvert, Jennifer didn’t stand a chance in this dysfunctional environment. She felt unsafe and unwanted because she didn’t feel emotionally managed and supported. She always seemed to be on her guard against attack from someone in her childhood household (sibling or parent).
Too much responsibility. Jennifer also found herself being looked after a lot by a very jealous and bullying older sibling who didn’t want so much responsibility - they wanted to be an only child. Jennifer's older sibling was only a few years older than her, so they weren't emotionally mature enough to handle the responsibility of parenting their younger siblings. The teaching of “please” and “thank you” became a battleground – control/domination ruled the day - glaring eyes and nasty voice. And, if someone did Jennifer a ‘favour’ then she was immediately demanded to “do” something for that person – without prior discussion – whether she liked it or not. “I did ‘X’ for you now you have to do ‘Y’ for me!” So, Jennifer soon learnt to become as independent as possible by not asking for favours to try to avoid the minefield of family politics.
So that once happy, joyful highly sensitive little introverted girl soon became very anxious and worried about everything. She felt it really hard to trust anyone in her home and therefore, everyone else (if you can’t feel like you can trust your family, who can you trust?).
Jennifer carried even more negative energy around with her, kept to herself a lot and became even more introverted as she grew older. And because she was anxious and feeling negative most of the time, and felt other people criticized her for it; Jennifer stopped sharing her fears and anxieties and became even more introverted and inside her head. She found it really hard to make friends (in fact, she just stopped doing that as it felt safer keeping others at a distance).
Need for Love & Protection. And yet, there was a big part of Jennifer that had a desperate need to both feel love and affection from others. But because she’d also felt bullied by members of her family, rejected by her Dad when she was a child – especially after he sexually molested her, she rejected others before they could hurt her (because she felt sure that they would hurt her). As with many other children who suffer emotional/ mental/physical abuse, her main aim was to protect herself from being hurt by others.
It wasn’t until Jennifer had a bit of a nervous breakdown in her late 40s, that she started to take a look at where she was, who she really was and what she really wanted from life. And that’s when she found me.
I could relate to Jennifer and her childhood and adulthood struggles. And, thankfully through all of my training over the years, I developed my Self-Empowering Inner Work Process that helped me out of my darkness and into the light; my path to self-empowerment and enlightenment.
As I worked through my Self-Empowering Inner Work Process, it helped me gain a healthier, wider, greater perspective of who I am now and what I’m capable of. Feeling more “in my power” and creating healthy boundaries with others; therefore, as I progressed, became less anxious, less worry in my head and more in control of my inner world and as such my life became less stressful.
In addition, I feel more open hearted towards others. And, thankfully, the feeling of
gratitude was unearthed from healing all of those layers of hurt, pain, distrust, fear of rejection, resentment and fear, etc.; I found that feeling grateful naturally flowed on from doing my Self-Empowering Inner Work Process. I found that coming from a place of gratitude helps you:
Improve your overall happiness and attitude and therefore, your overall health.
Increases your self-esteem
Helps you relax more
Live an open-hearted life
Attract more open-hearted friends and peers
Build healthy relationships
Grow your business
And being able to confidently, actively look for and accept speaking opportunities.
And what am I grateful for?
Now my gratitude knows no bounds. I feel grateful and I'm able to show my gratitude towards my family & friends, and I’ve also been blessed to be part of a couple of heart-centred supportive groups such as Catherine Watkin’s Mentoring Group [https://catherinewatkin.com/ ] and Aly Harrold’s Public Speaking Group [http://www.alyharrold.co.uk/ ]. Not only are these expert coaches both awe-inspiring in their own fields, these lovely professional ladies bring together heart-centred communities. They also “walk their talk” which is awesome!
And, being a member of both groups has had a powerful effect on encouraging me to develop and grow; Helping me to feel more supported and uplifted to help me on my path both as a solo entrepreneur (can be a bit lonely sometimes!) and in my personal life. Facing these challenges also gave me opportunities to heal my fear, hurt and pain that I was desperately holding onto to help protect myself.
My Self-Empowering Inner Work Process has been essential for my personal and business growth and success. I find that taking on business challenges, enabled me to work through my Self-Empowering Inner Work process at a faster pace. Which was essential for a 55-year-old woman starting her solo entrepreneur business – time was of the essence!
And in particular, I feel grateful for my clients; Lovely ladies whom I have worked with and who I continue to work with. As with everyone else, they are all at different stages of their Self-Empowering Inner Work Process. I’m so grateful for them and their continued trust and faith in themselves, their Self-Empowering Inner Work Process. And for them trusting in my process towards growing their own self-empowerment – being willing and able to step into their own “inner power.” On that path to feel free to be themselves.
The Gift of Gratitude was one the best results I received from going through my self-empowering inner work. It was the “Crème-del-a-Crème.” A gift that I thought was well beyond my reach and so did Jennifer before she started working with me.
And, if you find that even though, maybe on the outside, you tell people “of course I’m grateful!” but on the inside, you have thoughts like Jennifer had, please be gentle on yourself. Yes, lots of people may have had it worse than you (and maybe not) BUT this is your life and only you know what you suffered as a child. Remember: Everybody’s emotional pain is equal (no one’s is better or worse than anyone else’s).
And, isn’t it time for you to start walking your talk by emphatically and truthfully being able to say “Yes, I feel truly grateful” from your heart? And feeling it?!
Does any of this resonates with you? If so, please contact me for a FREE Emotional Discovery Call to see if we can work together to help you find that inner peace that has alluded you for so long. So that you can feel more self-confident, more in control of your feelings and enjoying an open-hearted feeling of gratitude! Free to be you!
My name is Lorraine M. Biggs and I invite you to join me on your FREE Emotional Discovery Call to explore and discover:
Clarity: Both around where you are now and where you want to be
What’s stopping you from where you want to be?
Mining for Gems: During this call, I will guide you through a meditative visualization process to help you rediscover an inner resource (maybe that feeling of gratitude that's been alluding you). Once rediscovered, this inner resource is yours to help you (within a second) when you most need it.
Contact Me: https://www.lorrainembiggs.co.uk/contact
FREE OFFER: However, if you feel that it's too soon to chat, I do understand. So to help you to get to know me a little better, click here to get your free MP3 recording to help you feel more empowered in an instant: https://www.lorrainembiggs.co.uk/empowered-speaker