I am coming off a great weekend! God provided such an amazing opportunity for me through friends who ride with me and for me. I got to have a conversation with these same friends about how hard it is to receive good things. When things seem to be going in a positive direction, I question it. Ever done that?
Maybe you’re the person who finds it hard to take a compliment. Or you’re waiting for someone or something to burst your bubble. Why are you so keen to think something will go wrong? I’ll tell you: trauma. The strongholds that come out of that can be quite powerful, but they’re not impossible to overcome. Let’s get into it…
Here are 3 reasons why you believe you don’t deserve good things and what to do about them.
1. You’ve never felt “normal” and it’s scary.
Childhood trauma is a beast! Once we endure the pain of neglect, abandonment, etc. our views about life and relationships are warped. Abuse coupled with the perception of love makes for a very distinct and confusing association. And therefore, when we find that we don’t have to endure abuse and neglect on a regular basis, things can be frightening. What do we fill the silence with? How do we handle the feelings? We feel relieved, yet almost longing for the same all at once. It’s ok that it’s scary. Your younger self is used to telling you that the other shoe is going to drop any moment . And that the lack of noise is an indication of danger...because that’s what you’re used to. The antidote to trauma responses is control. How can you regain that in a small way? Could it be cleaning your house? Taking a deep breath? Fill in the blank with the healthiest thing you know will help you work toward regaining control...or finding it. Making a new normal for yourself is likely the best thing you can do to face the fear.
2. The chaos is familiar.
This is a similar point to the first. We know chaos can feel normal. This is because you’ve been able to figure out what you need to function from one moment to the next in those environments. The fact that our response is to survive no matter the situation is a great primal tendency. However, the amount of stress we feel can hinder our ability to connect with our personal needs. In fact, we begin to believe we don’t deserve good things because we’ve never experienced them. When we have a “good thing”, we think it’s wrong. Perhaps it’s because we have to work hard for things to go right. Moreover, we think in order to gain good things we have to earn it. Because that’s the narrative we lived. Friend, this is where grace comes in. It’s the freely given, undeserving love and favor of God. You don’t have to do anything for the good to flow. You just need to redirect your perspective. How can you give yourself “good things” instead of waiting for it to come? This is a great follow up to regaining control. Make a new familiar experience and believe you deserve it.
3. Your self-talk tells you it’s a fluke.
Another reason we don’t believe we deserve a good thing is because we are telling ourselves just that. You may have heard things like, “No one will want you”. It’s hard not to internalize things like that, especially when it’s been a narrative for years. Somehow the “good thing” becomes an accident. How sad is it that we believe random acts happen, instead of the fact that a Being more powerful than us sees that we deserve love and has all the good things for us no matter what we do to mess it up. I often wonder how life would be for me if I saw myself the way I know God sees me. I haven’t always thought about how he loves everything about me. Yes, there are things I do to derail the plan for me. However, when I get back on track, it’s reinforcing that the people I meet and the moves I’ve been able to make are no fluke. Redirect your perspective. One powerful way to do this is evaluating your circle; who among you isn’t ready to go where you are? Their pessimism can be contagious and can block the good thing that has been there all along.
The good thing is there. We deserve it and more. Once you have it, how will you bless others with it? That’s been the reinforcing thing for me. I figured out how to finally manage my Daddy Issues and it’s brought more love and opportunities than I can imagine. I just had to pay it forward with things like my books, blogs, and other things! Share the good thing once you have it. Watch it impact someone else. This is how the good thing keeps on giving!
What are your thoughts? I would love to hear how you think we get in our own way here.