In therapy yesterday we talked about letting go. Especially letting go of the need of the approval of my mom. For some reason, I still play into that need with her. It’s like I don’t want to let her down. I feel like I have spent over half my life letting her and my dad down by being “sick”. Now I feel like I need to prove to her that I am well and doing well.
We also talked about taking sides. Since my dad passed away, there has been a huge riff in my family. My sister dislikes my brother very much and vice versa. My sister is angry with my mom and vice versa. I’m just kind of on the outside looking in yet Adam said that I am taking sides. My mom and brother get along fairly well. I know I need to step out and step back because this is not my issue or problem…it’s theirs. I know where I want to be and it’s not in the middle of the drama and mess between them all. I want to be supportive of both but the scale is unevenly balances. My brother talks to me. My sister doesn’t. She hasn’t spoken to me in months. Usually it’s just once a year, at Christmas because she “has” to. But anyway, that is another story.
So, I have been reading on how to let go of needing approval. Here is the website I got this from : http://tinybuddha.com/blog/how-to-let-go-of-the-need-for-approval-to-start-thriving/
HOW TO LET GO OF THE NEED FOR APPROVAL
1. Build a sound sense of self-acceptance.
The first step is to strengthen your core foundation so that you feel strong enough to go with what feels right for you. This way, you will no longer feel the need to look to others to feel good enough about your choices and decisions.
Keep a self-appreciation journal, where you start acknowledging daily or a few times a week the things you’re most proud of about yourself: choices you’ve made, insights you’ve learned, things you like about yourself, times you’ve stayed true to yourself, or whatever feels right for you.
2. Let go of seeking validation from others.
Secondly, you need to practice letting go of seeking validation for your choices and most importantly, for whom you choose to be.
This means noticing your language, self-talk, and behavior, and identifying when it is coming from wanting someone else to say you’re ok, that you made the right choice, or that you did the right thing.
Instead, when you do make a decision, check in with yourself that it feels right, remind yourself that it is your choice, and give yourself validation for just being you.
3. Evaluate tasks based on approval-seeking efforts.
Lastly, start being honest with yourself when you take on a new task or commitment, whether you are doing it because it is “right” for you or because you want to get approval and avoid disapproval.
Sit down and evaluate your weekly tasks and ask yourself what is really necessary and important, and what is driven by people pleasing. Then slowly work through the “people pleasing” list and eliminate them.
How has the need for approval impacted your life?
I think I will copy these three things into a Word document and hang it up so I can read it often. I need to trust myself more. Maybe that is where it starts for me. Trust. (that will be a topic for another time too.)