At some point in our lives, we wake up one morning and say, “WTF? I help all of these people and I get shit in return.”
The easy path is to project that others are the problem.
So we distance ourselves from others to recover and begin to fill up our own tanks. This seems like a great coping strategy for a while.
The challenge is it makes it difficult to build long-lasting interpersonal relationships that have fair and equitable exchange, or equal give and take. Instead, resentment continues to build.
Let’s back up and explore why this cycle persists.
The Transpersonal Trap
You may have heard of the hero archetype, or the person who leaves the only world they’ve ever known and goes on a quest to save others.
Many of us get caught in this trap ourselves. As transpersonal beings, we build enormous amounts of self esteem by helping others. Why would we choose not to build outer self esteem when it feels so good to help others?
The trap is we get caught up in giving more away than we take in for ourselves.
The way to identify if you are in the transpersonal trap is that you keep all of your messy parts tucked under a rug and only allow others to peer at the areas where you display mastery or perfection.
Building true, inner self esteem is difficult for anyone caught in the transpersonal trap because it requires letting someone in beyond your guard, which is oppositional to being the hero.
We are caught between feeling vulnerable inside, and yet never truly being vulnerable outside, which is a Catch-22 because it means we never advance beyond this important growth state. All the while, we look from the outside as if we have everything together.
We become amazing at doing, learning, and sharing, and yet not very amazing at being open, vulnerable, or transparent.
The challenge with this is we are left feeling bereft, alone, and unmet in the most important areas of our lives. We have a simple quick fix or a dynamic fool-proof solution for everything and everyone else, but the world never supports us in meeting our personal needs. We are left to satisfy our insatiable hunger with a few measly crumbs.
The good news about this sad state is that the contrast of dissatisfaction can help us see more clearly the steps we need to take in order to get free from the transpersonal trap. Once this occurs, we can begin building inner self esteem.
How to Free Yourself from the Trap
The first step in the process of building inner self esteem and freeing yourself from the transpersonal trap is answering a clear, direct personal question.
It sounds simple, but inner honesty is the key here. How honest are you willing to be with yourself? If you are a little honest, then a little bit of you will be free and that may make a huge difference for you. The opposite is also true – if you are willing to be painfully honest, then a majority of you has the opportunity to be free of the transpersonal trap. If you are motivated by the possibility of getting your needs met through building relationships based on fair and equitable exchange, then set aside time every day to sit in a meditative state and ask yourself one poignant, personal question…
“What would I do today for myself if I only had one hour left to live?”
And then do that, whatever that is… Asking the question would be a fabulous start. Give yourself time to have something organic bubble up to the surface that feels correct in your gut. The truth is you may not know for months, especially if you have been focused on the needs of others for a very long time.
This will be more difficult if you were raised in a home where the projection of selflessness was praised and the act of selfishness was condemned by your caregivers. The way to know you were conditioned in this way is simple. If you feel guilty thinking about getting your needs met, then you were taught that being personal was bad or wrong. But remember, hiding out meeting the needs of others only leads to undercurrents of resentment.
The more vulnerable place would be to invite others in to help you meet your identified needs and once this is accomplished, you can leave the finely decorated island you have become unto yourself, and instead, you can become the Universal being you are destined to become.
This will require admitting to someone else that you don’t have it all figured out and that might feel messy. It may in fact cause you to want to hit your default button and go back to being the hero, pretending you can do it all on your own.
The opportunity here is that when you go to your default at least you will know why you have landed back in the same space. Chances are, this will take time. After all, you have been engaging your inner and outer world this way for quite a long time.
Reaching out is quite vulnerable, and yet, when you do you will have a greater chance of experiencing the ultimate reward your soul craves: the opportunity to be met with love, kindness, care, and the affection you are so willing to give to others yet pass on when it comes to yourself.
Being messy, being needy, being selfish, being honest, being vulnerable, and being transparent about your needs with someone you trust is a way of joining in full into your collective Universe.
Once you summon the courage to take heartfelt action on your behalf, step back and observe and take witness to how the collective Universe delivers in complete, pure, synchronistic fashion.
Don’t take my word for it. Give it a shot and make it your own. If you want guidance in breaking free from the transpersonal trap, contact us today.
I find that I can’t even imagine what I would do if I only had an hour left to live, that’s a little scary.
I’m going to think about that for a while thanks for your words of wisdom
it makes so much sense when you say it
Thank you for your words. Because we live in a fast-paced technological world, we are conditioned to instant gratification. Sometimes, it’s hard to stop and take care of yourself. I meditate each morning. This sets my day in a positive motion.
Yes, some of the challenges we face today come from core beliefs instilled in us as children by our caregivers. In our society, most women (I include myself) are bred to be mothers and therefore caregivers so you give constantly. This falls into every aspect of your life. So you give and give not always making time for yourself.
Breast cancer is rampant in this country. The breasts are for nurturing. In taking the time to nurture your child, you nurture yourself, at least for awhile. But at some point, it falls by the wayside. Then you become just the nurturer giving, giving and hardly receiving. So, yes there is resentment. Change needs to happen.
I hope your blog and program brings a greater awareness and motivation for self-care particularly for women.