“Every surface in my mom’s home was covered in baked goods on her baking day. She always said: what good is effort if it doesn’t bring value to everyone?
That was the philosophy she lived with and that was what I took on. And now I can’t do anything unless it feels productive.”
My client uncovered this old story that played in her life and decided she no longer wanted it.
It was time to rediscover her own value but she felt stuck in this expectation that wasn’t even hers. It had come from her mother and it was like a concrete backpack that kept her inner critic loud and nasty, her energy low, and her default set at feeling inadequate.
Have you ever had a pattern like that in your life?
I definitely used to believe that if it’s not productive or useful it’s not worth doing. And having fun or taking care of myself seemed like a waste of time, so it never made it onto my to do list.
Instead, my to do list was full of responsibilities, shoulds and have-tos that I took care of while the resentment built and I headed towards burnout.
Ever found yourself believing that you have to do all these things, please all these people, take care of this and that, and achieve, achieve, achieve?
Have you ever asked yourself why?
Sure, the usual “I have kids who need me; I have a home to take care of; I have a relationship to nurture…”
But where do you fit into that?
Have you ever asked yourself what happens to those responsibilities if you get sick or if you burn out and can’t show up? When your fuel tank runs out, then what?
I know you know this because you’ve heard it a million times: Put your own oxygen mask on first before… Blah blah blah.
So why do so many women continue to put themselves last and run on empty?
Because sometimes we don’t even notice until it’s too late.
We are tired, have low energy, and find ourselves complaining and then feel bad that we should be grateful but we can’t seem to find it in us to feel the gratitude.
We have spent time going, going, going and numbing our true feelings for so long that everything else feels numb, too.
We feel productive because we do but we lose sight of ourselves in the process. We desperately try to find meaning in the doing but it’s not there!
And then one day we want to try something new and we find ourselves feeling incapable and worried that we don’t have what it takes.
The truth is, that unless you feel like you can count on yourself and you know your own value intimately, you will never feel fully capable and worthy.
Unless you know you can trust your own inner guidance and take care of your own spirit and energy, you will always feel at the mercy of the to dos and the have tos.
You will never feel accomplished or even finished and allow yourself to rest. You will always attach your worth and wholeness to doing rather than to simply being yourself.
To break free of this pattern it’s important to take a look at expectations. Really take a good, honest look at them and notice if you’re trying to live up to someone else’s expectations or your own. And if those expectations even make sense of if they’re just habits that you’d be better off without.
Start with asking yourself some powerful questions:
- What do I expect of myself?
- What do I think others expect of me?
- Do these expectations allow me the freedom to be myself or do they squash me into trying to be someone else?
- Where do these expectations come from?
- What would it mean if I released these expectations?
- Who am I without these expectations?
- How do I want to be instead?
And then take one tiny, baby step in the direction of becoming that and notice how it feels.
I’m still practicing this dance with expectations and making sure I do things from a place of having my own fuel tank full.
I’ve noticed that I am more productive and feel more accomplished this way – and this surprised me at first.
Take the time now to answer these questions for yourself. Really dive deep and tell yourself the truth.
And share with me what you uncovered. What expectations are you ready to release? Who are you underneath all of those expectations?
Kasia Rachfall is an intuitive breakthrough coach working with the Akashic Records to help spiritual women break generational patterns of feeling inherently broken so they can feel whole and have the freedom to accept their imperfect selves fully.