Messages from childhood

As children we learn by modeling the behavior of the adults in our lives.  We learn how to walk, talk, be angry, handle the every day situations that happen in life, how to get along with others in a relationship, how to love and be loved, how to be who we will ultimately become.  We also learn who we are in relationship to others.  We learn how valuable we are to others, how wanted, how unique others think we are to them, we learn if we are enough or not, we learn how to behave in the society in which we live.  The messages that are given to us during childhood stay with us throughout our lives.  These messages can come from the home, neighborhood or the school environment.  As adults we are still behaving like we were taught as a child.  If we were taught that we are unique and can contribute to society, then we will behave as such without fear.  If we were taught that we are worthless, not enough, good for nothing, not wanted and stupid, then we behave as such and become fearful with every decision we make.  We are waiting for it to fail.  We will live up to whatever expectations that were made of us during childhood and we repeat them in our lives over and over again. We set ourselves up to fail because that is what we are suppose to do.  These messages can come from parents, teachers, other children in school or the neighborhood we live in and especially ourselves.  We will repeat in our heads the messages of childhood whether good or bad.  Telling ourselves anything else becomes virtually impossible.  The fear that overcomes us in a new challenge is overwhelming and will stop us from starting it.  Why?  What have we got to loose? The most that will happen is that it will not work.  We will make a mistake.  It will not work out just as we planned it.  People will think we are worthless, not enough, good for nothing, not want us, stupid.  So what?  Who cares what other people think?  It is what we think that is the important thing.  It is the tape that runs in our head that is important.  The only time what other people think is important, is when we think that thing about ourselves.  The only person you have control over is you.  The only opinion that is important is your own.  You are ultimately responsible for yourself and the decisions that you make.  What other people think about any of that    does       not      matter.   If they love you, they will support and love you no matter what happens.  If they don’t, you are better off without them.  You do not need people in your life that will being you down and repeat the negative messages from your childhood.  You are the only person whose opinion of yourself matters.  You are the only person who knows you totally, intimately, all of your secrets.  You have to learn to love all of that.  To accept all of that.  To be at peace with all of that.  To be able to look at it in total and tell yourself it’s okay.  Good, bad, right, wrong it’s okay.  You can change what you do not want and keep what you do.  You are in charge of you, not the other people who’s opinion you seem to value.  They are ultimately not important in your decision making process.  They are also not responsible for the outcome of those decisions either.  Changing anything takes 3 weeks of constantly not doing the thing you want to change and replacing it with something else.  It takes 3 more week of doing the replacement behavior to make it a habit.    This will help you relax during the change.  Enjoy!


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I became a therapist in an attempt to understand my own childhood and what happened there and how it made me who I am, exhibiting the behaviors that were not always positive, very often self-destructive. I used Art Therapy to help me understand things in my past that were stopping me from making better decisions in my present day. I used Behavioral Science to help me understand underlying causal factors, roots to the present day behaviors that I was seeing in myself. Both help me to change those behaviors/thoughts that were causing me to make self-destructive decisions that were causing pain in life. I have been a therapist since 1985 and have an undergraduate degree Art and behavioral science (double major) from the University of Maine. My graduate work was done at Marywood university and I have a degree in Art Therapy. I have certificates in Forensic Interviewing and Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavior therapy. I have 22 out of 30 credits toward a degree in Trauma Therapy from Drexel University. I started out as a Community Support Worker, Program Manager/Clinical Supervisor, Family therapist and Outpatient therapist.

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