In the years I practiced as a therapist in Los Angeles, I had a client who was a commercial director who was angry a lot of the time.
He would fly into rages, yell at people, even strangers when they didn’t give him what he wanted when he wanted it. He often gave in to road rage on the freeway flipping off other drivers.
When we explored this anger, it stemmed back to childhood, growing up in great poverty. Having so little, he picked up a story that while others could have what they wanted, he couldn’t.
So even though his life was presently full of blessing, his past story perpetuated his childhood plights, continuing to believe irrationally he would never be worthy enough to have all that he wanted.
As he let himself feel the vulnerable feelings tied to the fear and sadness of not knowing when his next meal would come as a child and let go of the irrational story that he was unworthy, the old feelings released and his rage subsided.
Then, he could embrace the many blessings he currently had in his life.
Another client wanted to be a performer. His father was a farmer. After a long day out in the fields, his father would come home tired and discouraged from the grueling work. His father felt burdened by the physical labor and never felt like he could get ahead.
My client was raised with the story that anything that took consistent, hard work would never have any pay-offs and those that did would be tiring.
So, when he thought about working on his entertainment career, he already foresaw its demise. Only after he accepted the natural fear we all have when taking a risk, combined with applying attention without his father’s story attached, his fear eventually passed.
It wasn’t his story in the first place, but he carried it from his father to guarantee he would never have to suffer like his Dad. Obviously, he suffered more because of it.
Once he realized this, he could get out of his own way and go about accomplishing his life’s dream without making it more difficult than necessary.
Another client was a beautiful model but her job bookings had slowed down. She was also approaching 40 and feared her career was about to end because of her age.
She worried she wouldn’t be able to keep doing what she loved doing and make money to support herself because if word got out how old she was no one would hire her.
But the most amazing thing happened. Once she started letting this story go, not buying into the cultural belief system, her career actually took off, more so than she could ever dream possible.
Many luxurious fashion brands hired her, and her dreams of becoming a world-top-model came true. It was thrilling to watch her break societal molds as I witnessed her claim her own self-worth.
The stored data from our parents, or the people who raised us, or our ancestors, or our teachers, or our religious, societal and cultural norms, continues to inform us how we view ourselves and all of which can be unlearned.
That’s the beauty of creation. In truth, whatever feelings arise and the thoughts attached to them that create our emotions are really offerings to show us what is ready to depart from us.
Creativity is like Calgon rushing through a calcified pipe, taking with it whatever is in our way. It’s more interested in how we can continue to grow and create what we really want day by day.
When dealing with a problem, I tend to say, Oh NO and close up and shut down, only to find a relatively short time later, I’m like, WHEW—Well, thank God that’s over.
It does pass . . .
But what makes it so painful or difficult while it’s happening is because we believe an old story that simply isn’t true.
Once we understand it’s only a story we’ve chosen to believe and not let it run us, we can then focus simply on allowing the feeling to gently release.
Feelings on their own can move away quickly like a cloud moving across a sky, leaving us with expansiveness. Creativity asks us to feel so we can go to the next level in ourselves.
We may not want to take that risk but when we expose ourselves to our vulnerabilities, we are actually strengthened.
Wishing you more of what you really want in your life, career and relationships!