Running On Fumes

Are you a chronic over – giver, a rescuer, saviour, fixer or problem solver? Do you carry the weight of the world on your shoulders, care deeply about people and don’t know how to say no? You can’t help yourself, it’s just who you are.  

You are more than likely a leader, in a position of responsibility. You may be the head of a family, the responsible one, the one who has his or her life together, is successful and has made it to the top of the ladder or the mountain. You more than likely love seeing people grow and flourish and are passionate and committed to making a difference in the world.

But, you have probably been running this pattern for a very long time, and you are drained, depleted and exhausted. You are starting to find the demands, pressures and expectations unbearable and when you need support and care….it is nowhere to be found. Your tank is empty and you are running on fumes.  You spend so much time taking prioritizing the care of others over your own needs, that they are neglected and you feel disconnected and unfulfilled. 

Well, this may not be a popular opinion, it is contrary to what we are taught and it may not be what you want to hear, but I am going to burst the Giver – Helper Hero bubble. I am here to tell you to stop it!  Stop trying to help, save, rescue, fix or solve other people’s problems for them.  

Because the truth is that healing and empowerment, is actually an inside job. No-one else can do it on behalf of another.  You have to want to heal. You have to want to change. You have to choose to do the work for yourself.  That is not to say that holding a space and a mirror up for them, as they explore options to work through their own problems in a way that leaves them feeling equipped and empowered going forward, isn’t useful and valuable. But right now, it is time to focus on YOU.  What is most important is for you to seek and find new sources of nourishment that will restore your depleted reserves. Fill up your tank and focus on engaging in activities that will nurture your body, mind and soul.

Now I want you to think about this. Why do you do this? Why are you so quick to give to others rather than to pour into yourself? What is the payoff for you?   Does it make you feel needed, important, worthy? Is this the best use of your time and energy?  And what is the cost? What problems have you been avoiding that it is now time to face?  Which of your close family relationship need nurturing and care? 

What is the unintended consequence of this pattern? Are you actually serving the greater good, the people you help or yourself? Does this disempower others from learning, building resilience, taking responsibility and facing up to what is actually theirs to confront and work through? Are you aiding or inhibiting their growth? Are you interfering with their destiny and in doing so disrupting yourself from the pathway to your own? 

Now, step back from the situation for a moment and ask yourself this – who would you be if you were not helping others? What would you be doing with your time, energy and resources? What impossible dream have you put on hold that is calling for your attention? What could you build that would make a positive, powerful and sustainable impact in the world, bring you inner peace and lead you to financial freedom.

Now, are you ready to break this pattern and do something different? 

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