Talking with a client whose deepest wound is she has never felt like she could be herself. Caught in the world of performance addiction and imprisoned by people pleasing, she has repeatedly betrayed her inner knowing and authentic needs over her life creating chronic anxiety within her.
This has also shown up in her relationships where she feels she can never express her needs or her true self.
Gio: "So tell me about your kids?"
Client: "Oh I love my daughter, she is amazing, so free... but she is also so opinionated, so dramatic."
Gio: "So your daughter speaks her mind... and yet you say you never have, what do you think about that?"
Client: "It's funny you say that because I often wish I was like her, I admire her."
Gio: "That doesn't surprise me."
"You know children have a way of calling out (or acting out) the dormant parts of you, the parts you are rejecting... So the quieter this part of you is, the more exaggerated it will be in her."
Client: "Wow, (thinking) I'd never seen it that way, wow... So...
.... she feels it, that I don't express myself freely?"
Gio: "You just finished telling me everything you felt as a child, so yes, she does. She might not understand it. I want you to see your daughter as your mirror."
A week later I meet with my client:
Client: "Gio an amazing thing happened! My daughter was sent out of writing class for misbehaving so normally I would deal with her by addressing her behavior, saying,
"Why did you act like this? This is unacceptable!"
But something connected inside of me and I asked her instead how she felt about it. It turns out she feels she isn't as good of a writer as her peers so she is afraid of that. And this week Gio, she was like a different child, so calm, at ease. The change was incredible and so fast."
Gio: "OK so let's circle this back to your relationship with J. So when your daughter is unable to express what is really going on she becomes reactive- more opinionated and dramatic. When she does that, how does it feel to you?
Client: "Heavy, really heavy, it pushes me away."
Gio: "But when she finally shared what was really going on, vulnerably, what did you feel?"
Client: "Like night and day, I wanted to protect her, come close to her.
Gio: "So how is she mirroring your actions up until now with J?
Client: Silence, thinking. "OMG Gio, Yes! I've been dramatic and reactive instead of vulnerable with J. When we have a problem I hold it in or blow up but he always feels it and of course it was pushing him away, it's heavy and annoying!
Gio: "So what do you think will happen as you learn to share vulnerably with J?
A Week Later:
Client: "Gio, J took all of Sunday off to be with me. He has come so much closer to me and is telling me I am beautiful all the time. He has also started opening up to me so much more! Wow, it is amazing how fast this works!
Why did I link my client's breakthrough in self-love to her daughter? Because she loves her daughter with all of her being. This self-identification with her daughter begins to shift into an internal self-acceptance of her inner little girl. As my client deepens her relationship with herself, so do all her other relationships.