How Do We Nourish Our Own Souls

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

“We cannot see our souls or what we call our self-esteem. However, we know that our souls need to be nourished consistently to sustain our joy.”

starving soul hungerTruth is again on my mind like usual or more accurately “the search for truth” and its role in nurturing our souls. Here are my thoughts:

We cannot see our souls or what we call our self-esteem. However, we know that our souls need to be nourished consistently to sustain our joy. We are designed for happiness, however we are also designed with built in mechanisms to protect us from harm. Our emotions even our pain-based ones like shame and sadness exist as gauges to guide and protect us and to keep us safe. When they function properly and our filters are intact, we confidently take cues from them to either course correct or thought correct and take actions that remove us from harm’s way and teach us to avoid that “bad” thing again in the future. Positive emotions, on the other hand, are cues that our actions and thoughts are serving us well.

images-4Once our souls are nourished, we feel complete – happy – content – valued. We know how being liked, loved and desired makes us feel. We set and achieve goals because we know how achieving them makes us feel and that we are worthy of the outcomes. And when our souls are not nourished or are depleted such as from abuse, overwork, and invalidation, we feel trapped, inadequate, and become unhappy, emotionally fatigued, depressed, sad and, even worse, traumatized.

When our souls are routinely starved, we also run the risk of 3 things:

  1. Believing falsely we are the source of the ensuing pain and discomfort; and/or
  2. Blaming something or someone else for them; and/or
  3. Feeling unsafe in our own bodies.

All harm us more because they cause us to feel more pain and stop us from taking action that we need to learn from and that nurture us and sustain our joy.

imagesWe, folks, are NOT the source of our pain. We are the source of our joy. And we own and are responsible for regulating our emotions including our pain. Other things or people can only trigger them. However, our emotions become overly taxed and go haywire after extreme emotional neglect and pain that can make us feel unsafe in our own bodies. Our lives becomes a cycle of creating pain and
trying to alleviate pain we believe falsely we are powerless to. We become victims and reactive to life relying on others who do not have our best interests at heart rather than ourselves for answers and to define our self-worth.

imgres-7This is no secret as what some want us to believe. As a matter of fact, this cognitive based school of thought was founded by Christian Larsen in the very early 1900’s over 100 years ago and now most of his books are free to the public!!

And, yes, our parents or caregivers should have taught us this. In their defense, If they did not, then they were also not taught how to as were their parents ad infinitum.

12049632_1613466202253151_7563358611981122153_nWell, then, how do we nurture our souls?

The answer is pretty simple and is no secret. Here it is!

  1. Unlearning the thinking that makes us addicted to pain;
  2. Surrounding ourselves with others who reflect back to us the nurturing TRUTH our souls need to flourish;
  3. Honoring the value of that truth through self-compassion and self-care;
  4. Learning we are worthy of the effort;
  5. Learning we are worthy of the happiness; and
  6. Reflecting our authentic nurturing truth back to others with love, kindness, and compassion to help them nourish their souls.
  7. Repeating 2 though 6 above.

10592670_618439154966040_3348146276018635085_nThis is how love and life are supposed to work…this is also what abuse, narcissists, emotional vampires, and poor parenting ruin for us. The world is currently in crisis because we have a pandemic of starving souls.

I am committed here at Yourlifelifter to show you how to achieve these objectives and nurture your souls! And as you heal, your children will heal through you.

Be sure to sign up for my FREE self-esteem building tips and tools that can help you make huge strides in your recoveries.

You are all worthy of the effort.

I am honored to support you in your journeys!

Why are Narcissists Self-Righteous and Manipulative?

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

th-12Have you noticed that the most toxic people have the biggest and the most fragile egos?

Ever wondered why?

They are part of the facade, the illusion of smoke and mirrors masking a core of deep-seated shame and self-loathing and powerlessness. They are crude covertly aggressive parasitic attempts at taking others’ power for selfish self-serving purposes by those who cannot and do not want to generate their own. Oh, they may try to pass it off as power, however aggressiveness and the needs to control and charm and be self-righteousness and manipulate are not power.

Truly powerful and influentially people do not manipulate others and are not self-righteous because, simply, they do not have to. However, generating our own power takes hard work including putting our egos aside for not only our own good but for others’ as well. And what key character qualities does this require? You got it – selflessness, conscientiousness, commitment, compassion and empathy: qualities these broken personality disordered people lack and have replaced with self-righteousness and manipulation and a sick desire to make others lose.

Read more here on narcissists, character, work and obligation.

th-10Now they cannot show their true colors to the world. Can they? How would they survive? How would they get others to give up the energy they starve for and need for emotional sustenance, for glue to mend their cracked psyches?

Of course! Why not portray a false image (e.g. ego) of charm and aggression (covert or overt) they need the world to see and prey on the vulnerable? Why not defend and perpetuate the false spineless weak persons they really are by judging others to prove their own power to themselves and to others and use whatever or whomever they can including religion to do so? Why not recruit personal assistants, “flying monkeys,” to help them th-11create the magical illusion of power and grandeur and create their own “Land of Oz?” Why not commit the worst of “sins” in the name of God, America, or Buddha or Muhammed or for whatever reason or lie they can muster to justify what is really pure depravity and evil? Why not worship false idols – their own selves!

They want all the benefits we the virtuous folks work for and that the narcissists feel entitled to such as love and marriage and children and recognition without any of the work! In fact, they hate self-improvement! This is why they flock to and frequent churches and religious communities and politics and even companies and “do good” fund raising organizations that are driven by unethical “group think” cultures.

Read more here on narcissists, character, work and obligation.

th-13Now, evil lies on a long spectrum, however evil is evil. It is like being pregnant. You are or you aren’t and being a little bit is irrelevant to the greater purpose. So rather than work to become virtuous people of integrity and character and develop grace, tolerance, kindness, and generosity (which they loathe doing, by the way), these depraved people mask their weaknesses and prey on the vulnerabilities of others who truly are people of virtue.

Read more here on why people are evil.

This is why they target the most vulnerable people like empaths and trauma wounded victims of childhood abuse who they can play like a fiddle. Folks, it is no coincidence that all the adult victims of narcissistic abuse were also victims of childhood abuse and have low self-worth. In fact, they target and bank on the kindness and compassion of the conscientious ones to provide the energy they need to keep their depravity going because they have no desire to change. They like themselves just the way they are.

Read more here to understand who narcissists target.

Read more here on what causes malignant narcissism.

They con us to believe their lies, shadow their pain on us, and parasitically feed off of our energy and our compassion and empathy. And yes, they leave us trauma ridden, emotionally starved, emotionally fatigued and depressed and believing we are defenseless and powerless to them and that we are the source of our pain and they are the source of our joy. They try to turn us into them and them into us!!

This is the core to victimhood from narcissistic abuse. The same principles apply to bullies! However, we can heal and recover. We can repent our “sins” and self-correct and course correct, break the pain addictions, and take our power back.

They cannot.

We can learn to release our repressed pain and trauma and resolve our false feelings of defenselessness to them and build our self-esteem and learn to hang tough in our truth and modulate our triggered pain and regulate our fear based emotions.

They cannot.

We can come into truth.

They cannot.

They will then no longer target us and we will no longer fear them and give up our power to them or rely on them to validate our self-worth. This is how we take our power back. This is how we thrive. This is how good wins over evil! You can learn and read more in my book Take Your Power Back: Healing Lessons, Tips, and Tools for Abuse Survivors.

How Do We Heal and Mourn After the Loss of a Narcissist?

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

“We, in essence, have to heal and grieve from multiple doses of betrayal and the accompanying toxic shame and self-loathing and exaggerated feelings of powerlessness.”

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Narcissistic abuse survivors are frequently told to “get over it and move on.” This is not only ridiculous and inappropriate, it is also impossible. Abuse victims have suffered from extreme trauma. Understanding that the people we loved never existed and will never be the people we want and need them to be present huge challenges to victims of narcissistic abuse.

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Narcissist abuse survivors are left with significant inner conflicts because they are faced with mourning someone they loved who will never relieve or take responsibility for the trauma they inflicted on us and who will not ever return the love our hearts long for. Our attackers have, in effect, gotten away with “murder” they were not held accountable for. Emotionally, these can pose serious healing challenges to the surviving victims.

How, then, do we deal with the loss and heal from the trauma narcissists inflicted on us when they are gone? How do we mourn and grieve the loss of a narcissist when they are still alive, when they are dying or have passed away and we are left with unresolved trauma and unrequited love?

WHY IS HEALING AFTER THE LOSS OF A NARCISSISTIC SO DIFFICULT

One of the main reasons that healing from narcissistic abuse as adults is so difficult is because at that point in our lives, we have been betrayed twice and sometimes even more times. To be betrayed by those we intimately trusted is compounded in adulthood as the repressed pain from childhood and the accompanying sense of defenselessness are repeatedly triggered. So after the loss of a narcissist, we are left to heal from the childhood wounds and grieve our childhood and grieve the loss of love that will be forever unrequited. We, in essence, have to heal and grieve from multiple doses of betrayal and the accompanying toxic shame and self-loathing and exaggerated feelings of powerlessness and hopelessness. So, effectively grieving after narcissistic abuse provides daunting challenges. It requires a reconciliation and a recalibration of our conflicting beliefs as they relate to loss, forgiveness, unrequited love, our lovability, and our pain and suffering.

“Effectively grieving after narcissistic abuse…requires a reconciliation and a recalibration of our conflicting beliefs as they relate to loss, forgiveness, unrequited love, our lovability, and our pain and suffering.”

th-8We can also mistake trauma bonding (e.g. pain- and peptide-addictions) for love. Narcissistic abuse recovery expert Melanie Tonia Evans explains in “Trauma Bonding: Is It Love or Something Else?” that “we were all conditioned to believe that powerful and all consuming feelings, and the ‘not being able to stop thinking about someone’ and ‘feeling an intense attachment’ must mean love…we were taught very little about real love – as a safe, supportive, calm, regenerating and trustworthy entity. And we didn’t realise that true and real love necessitates a deep knowing that you are the other half of a safe, supportive and genuine ‘team.'”

HEALING IS ABOUT US, NOT THEM

Healing, folks, is not about our attackers. Healing is about us. Mourning and paying respects are not about our attackers, they are all about us. We must heal first in order to effectively mourn and grieve. We must go on a journey to figure out why we loved someone who inflicted unrelenting pain on us. To completely heal we must dig deep to release the inner pain and forgive ourselves for the role we played in our own abuse. Self-forgiveness is a critical part of healing.

Healing Henry Cloud

Read more on the importance of self-forgiveness in healing here.

In healing, rescuing ourselves from our own despair allows us to become emotionally stronger and trusting of our own abilities and self-worth and learn self-compassion that will help us release the shame and the powerlessness and defenselessness we once felt to the unresolved trauma our attackers left us with. Healing will facilitate mourning our childhoods that have passed and the loss or pending loss of the person(s) we once loved and who we once needed to love us by accepting they never existed and will never become who we thought they were. It is a point we reach when we understand and accept the truth about what happened to us from a neutral position of emotional peace without the pain, blame and shame that our abusers shadowed on us.

Read more on the importance of self-forgiveness in healing here.

knowbetter do betterHealing provides us a divine opportunity to become the authentic persons we were put on this earth to be and thrive. It is at this point that our painful pasts will no longer matter because we have broken our pain addictions and learned to provide our own selves the love and self-respect and self-assurance and self-care that we need to sustain us and thrive and the new found belief that we are worth the effort. We have learned to use our compassion responsibly and we can reliably decide what serves our hearts and souls even in our choices of paying respects when our attackers who we love or once loved have are dying or have died. Even if they are dying, their toxicity is not diminished, just their capacity to act on it. So their “death” or pending death sadly or fortunately (depends on how you choose to view it) essentially forces us into “No Contact” that supports our emotional healing and removes us from the harm from their toxicity.

NARCISSISTS ARE EASY TO FORGET

maya_angelou-howyoumakethemfeel2

Memories of narcissists fade quickly. They leave us very few memories to sustain our love so they are quickly forgotten. And once we are healed, memories of them no longer trigger our repressed pain. So they leave us with little of value or meaning to “miss.” Do we miss someone who is not capable of love and parasitically feeds off of their own children? Do we miss someone who leaves us no loving or pleasant memories to sustain our loss?  Like Maya Angelou said, “we don’t forget how people made us feel.” She was talking about pleasant feelings.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Why Self-Forgiveness is Fundamental to Healing and Achieving Justice from Narcissistic Abuse

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

th-2“Forgiveness is part of healing. It is not a prerequisite to healing. It is a point we reach when we understand and accept the truth about what happened to us from a position of emotional neutrality without the pain, blame and shame that our abusers shadowed on us.” 


I’d like to share some information on forgiveness, justice and victimization that may not be so obvious to survivors of narcissistic abuse but is critical to their healing.

Survivors of narcissistic or for that matter any abuse were victims, no different than a victim of a crime, a brutal illegal attack or violation of our boundaries, rights, authorities, or freedoms. What is the difference between a brutal attack of one’s body or possessions and one’s psyche and one’s heart and betrayal of intimate trust? Not many. But there are a few fundamental ones.

brokenheart-wallpaperOne attack, you may think, takes place in the conscious physical world – the other, in the metaphysical, the metacognitive world where we feel and think. However, the pain and shame and anger and fear and trauma we experience from a brutal physical or emotional brutal attack are the same. They inflict the same wounds and frequently open old ones. In addition, there are major differences to how we heal from the wounds. This is why.

We can achieve justice and emotional relief when our attackers are found, charged, found guilty, and punished for their evil deeds. Our victimization is then validated, our egos are soothed, and we can achieve some sense of safety, security, and closure. But what happens when a criminal “gets away with murder” and is free to roam and victimize whomever he or she chooses to target?

Isn’t this what serial thieves do?

Isn’t this what serial murderers and rapists do?8cc14d8f-48d2-4d8c-97d9-3e66d991850e-medium

Isn’t this what serial narcissists do?

The answers are an unequivocal YES and pose huge healing challenges to their victims. Let’s explore these challenges closer.

Healing and Achieving Justice

Healing and justice are not acquired through resentment and revenge that serve no other purpose than feeding our egos, keeping us bonded to our abusers, and continuing to give up our power to them. These are reactive defenses that cause us unjustifiably to take on additional pain and blame and continue to suppress our pain and also keep us trapped and hunkered down in shame and inaction that will do nothing more than hamper our healing and recovery.

Equally, healing and justice are not acquired through excusing the evil or pain or betrayal that was inflicted on us by our attackers or by showing compassion for them. Our need to forgive can also be guilt-driven by our moral, ethical or religious 1935078_1109367059096008_7406065166067850262_nbeliefs and convictions. I agree with renowned author and therapist Dr. Alice Miller and others that we do not have to forgive and that forgiving our abusers is a personal choice. We can add a huge amount of emotional burden to an already painful situation by being told if we do not forgive, we punish ourselves twice..blah blah blah. This can leave us conflicted and feeling added guilt and even shame when we really do not want to forgive.

We also while dealing with forgiveness have to deal with other daunting and unique challenges faced while grieving our losses. Effectively grieving after narcissistic abuse requires a reconciliation and a recalibration of our conflicting beliefs as they not only relate to forgiveness but also to loss, unrequited love, our lovability, and our pain and suffering.

Read more here on how to grieve and mourn the loss of a narcissist.

How, then, do innocent victims “get justice” when their attackers get off free of charge? How then do they achieve emotional relief and a sense of security? Victims of emotional abuse do not even have the option of becoming vigilantes because the narcissists like the mutants on X-men and space creatures on Men in Black look normal on the outside, do their dirty deeds, and remain unscathed. In essence, not only are we the victim, but we also become the police, judge and jury.

Healing is All about the Victims, Not the Abusers

th-1Healing, folks, has nothing to do with our abusers. Healing is, however, all about the victims. We are left to heal invisible wounds that were caused by our active but unaware participation in a very harming situation. Abuse survivors must work to turn their compassion and care inward and release the pain, trauma, shame, anger and fear that were projected onto them and inflicted on them by the emotional and conscienceless criminals, vampires, and thieves who also stole their identities. We, to heal, must not only release the pain and anger from the attack but also the shame from betrayal and of our unconscious complicity in the crime and our perceived foolery. This is why self-forgiveness and self-compassion are so important in healing. As Emily R., a community member at Yourlifelifter so eloquently stated, “forgiving a conscienceless person has absolutely zero meaning, thus, the real issue is learning to forgive oneself for not trusting oneself over their manipulative ploys of false promises and fake emoting.”

Forgiveness is part of healing. It is not a prerequisite to healing.

10453112_10150486967674990_1990359670124377576_nIt is a point we reach when we understand and accept the truth about what happened
to us from a position of emotional neutrality without the pain, blame and shame that our abusers shadowed on us. Releasing the pain and anger will allow us to heal emotionally. Accepting our powerlessness to the pain “permits” us to direct our energy to healing. But to fully heal we must forgive ourselves for the part we played. This is why understanding why we were targeted is critical to healing. We are then emotionally free to see things truthfully and accept what happened to us, accept our powerlessness to the pain, incrementally take back our personal power and redirect it to change our faulty thinking, rescue our own selves, and stop being vulnerable to emotional criminals.

Healing is a process of self-discovery, self-analysis into the root causes of why we were victimized, addressing how our beliefs contributed to that, correcting our skewed beliefs, mourning our losses, building our self-worth as well as healing our trauma wounds. I personally believe, it is close to impossible to fully accept what happened to us and forgive ourselves for the part we played unless we first heal and recover from the trauma and then stop our faulty victim thinking. This requires fully understanding why we love people who inflict pain on us and why we are attracted to power imbalanced relationships.

 “Forgiving a conscienceless person has absolutely zero meaning, thus, the real issue is learning to forgive oneself for not trusting oneself over their manipulative ploys of false promises and fake emoting.”  ~ Emily R., a community member at Yourlifelifter

As a survivor, I can say that I do not excuse the despicable acts of the abusers in my life or absolve them of their “sins” (e.g. outside my pay grade) but I can say that I am clear on what happened and why it happened in my childhood, why I was targeted and why I let it happen into my adulthood. I am also very clear that the abuse no longer continues because I do not think like a victim so I am no longer victimized. I am not powerless to pain and I do not deserve to suffer. I choose not to participate in the dysfunction so they are defused and go away. They continue to target me because that is just what abusers do and but I am not emotionally vested. I no longer fear them. I no longer believe I have to suffer or self-sacrifice to be good or lovable. I do, however, accept them and readily identify them as the abusers and broken people they are.

Healing Henry CloudWe cannot expect things from people who are not capable of giving them. I accept that life is not fair and I was born into a herd of narcissists that I had no choice over. But I do have choices now based on my new found personal truth and not others’ lies. I choose a life I know I deserve, a life of peace, harmony, happiness, emotionally healthy love and mutual respect! I also accept that they cannot. I also accept that truly evil people do exist and that I do not possess the divine power, right, and authority to absolve them of their depravity.

I do, however, have the divinely provided right and authority first and foremost to forgive myself, heal, and to live a joy-filled life I am deserving and worthy of. The best revenge is healing, happiness, and success!

And in the process we achieve the justice we seek.

What Causes Malignant Narcissism?

imgres-3Well, the experts are not exactly sure and frequently argue the causes between nature and nurture. Some say genetic disposition. Some say abuse, specifically invalidation including neglect and coddling, the same things in actuality that damage children who go on to become abused adults and targets of narcissists.

One thing for sure is that both the narcissists and their targets suffer from deep seated pain and the environmental causes may be the same, however, one child become a narcissistic, a predator, and the other becomes a target, a victim, neurotic. Another fundamental difference is that the neurotic can heal and the narcissist cannot.

Preeminent neuroscientist, Dr. James Fallon reports in “Crime Talk” that we are genetically predisposed to narcissism, empathy and psychopathy. His research discovered that narcissists and psychopaths are genetically predisposed to aggression, violence and lacking compassion and for psychopaths, lacking conscience. The pleasure centers of their brains are also affected so narcissists and psychopaths do not get pleasure like normal folks would get such as from reading a book. What I find very interesting is how Dr. Fallon describes how their “evil genes” are “turned on” by abuse in childhood. Psychopaths and narcissists, however, use the functioning parts of the brain and those that support reasoning and planning to con you and manipulate you. Their brains, according to Dr. Fallon, create a work around in order for them to survive and abuse and con from you what they want and need and they do not care what impact that has on you. Read more in the article, “Can Malignant Narcissism Be Cured?

So narcissists and other covert aggressors feed off of the vulnerabilities of neurotics because narcissists cannot generate their own energy to feed their false disordered persona that lacks compassion. They cannot self-soothe. They deliberately target and actively prey on ONLY certain people like empaths who they can manipulate long lasting narcissistic supply from. They also can target other narcissists.1098228_1187695837924727_3159249499669189930_n

How and where did they learn this?

Of course, where all our fears and phobias and emotional pains are rooted: in our families and in our childhood. They learned their manipulative grooming and combat tactics in the same dysfunctional abusive families where the abused children acquired their wounds. A child learns how to become an effective narcissist by practicing on his related victims who are frequently the empaths and “normal ones” they make the family black sheep and scapegoats. They recruit others in the family to participate with them in their evil dealings. The narcissists learn these aggressively manipulative behaviors in the same environment the abused are conditioned to think like victims and become dependent on others for self-worth.

What makes one neurotic and have low self-worth and the other personality disordered? What makes people evil? What makes us empaths? Only God knows.

Read more in the article, “Can Malignant Narcissism Be Cured?

This I know for sure.

Narcissism runs rampant in my family: aunts, uncles, cousins and so does mental imgres-4illness. My aunts married narcissists. One aunt committed suicide as a result of indescribable physical and psychological narcissistic abuse that I witnessed until her death. Decades later they still do not acknowledge the epidemic level of family mental illness after two suicides and serious depressions and addictions. So obviously, families  are somehow genetically predisposed and provide the environmental conditions to breed narcissists.

LEARN MORE ON DYSFUNCTIONAL FAMILIES AND INTERGENERATIONAL ABUSE.

I, fortunately, very young was able to see the evilness and depravity and wanted no part in it whatsoever. I was talented, bright, empathetic, ethical and bold and so I openly called them on the depravity and the mental illness. And, of course, the role of the normal ones was to bail the others out when they screwed up in addition to feeding their egos. I provided excellent food and narcissistic supply for the herd of narcissists as did the ones with the most serious mental illnesses who they could scapegoat to their hearts’ content.

imgres-2There are not many left now back in the “village” and the herd is thin so the narcissists who are left are starving and now make some of the ones they scapegoated their golden children and feed off of each other and lay in wait for someone to die so they can con their money from them. How convenient? Is that love? Is that family? I think the answer is obvious. I refer to it as “narcissistic sodomization.”

You cannot polish a turd, folks, but you can roll it in glitter and you CAN remove yourself from the toxicity and come into your own truth and achieve emotional freedom. Absolutely you can and you deserve to. And as you heal, your children will heal through you!

I am proof of that and it is now my life’s work to help you do the same. We cannot cure narcissists and we cannot solve all the problems in the world but we can make it better one person at a time and I am personally committed to do that.

Empathy: Is It a Gift or a Curse?

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

imgresHere is a message to empaths referring to their abilities as a curse: “Tsk tsk tsk!” Your abilities truly are gifts but can falsely appear as burdens if you were taught to look at them as oddities or vulnerabilities or weaknesses or reasons to let others use them for their benefit.

Cognitive dissonance causes people to believe and to be emotionally comfortable with only what “makes them right” and with what does not challenge their beliefs or ego or trigger their fears. It also makes people intolerant of people’s differences that, well, make them feel uncomfortable. Cognitive dissonance in others is what makes them uncomfortable with empaths’ differences.  Similarly, empaths can also suffer from cognitive dissonance that can make them uncomfortable with and intolerant of their own unique qualities. While our emotional intelligence and sensitivities cause us naturally to challenge our beliefs and temper our egos which are healthy, we also have to learn to accept, trust, honor and comfortably rely on them and not fear them (as our childhood caretakers should have taught us).

So while being an empath can be demanding, we can learn with self-focused effort and care to manage our natural and divine abilities and acknowledge their value, power, and strength rather than succumb to them. These are gifts and abilities that we need to not only use responsibly but also responsibly honor and protect.

Being an Empath is Rewarding and Challenging

To be born an empath is a gift because you were born with the ability to see truth and beauty in others! However, it can come with many challenges. We are natural energy receivers and have high emotional intelligence so we also can “feel” others’ distresses and insecurities and can have an innate desire to relieve them or expose them (whether we want to or not) and even when it may not be in our best interest to do so. We are born with an overabundance of compassion and energy. We can also become very vulnerable to abusers and have a high tendency towards codependency. Read more here.

14463279_1276822885683757_5551024342412853674_nEmpaths also have a natural ability to see and absorb truth that can be discomforting to them especially when they are around inauthentic and toxic people. Diane Kathrine points out in her enlightening article that empaths can easily see and reveal the sides of people’s personalities they are trying to hide. Empaths can wear other people’s truth like the mask they hide behind; even if they are consciously unaware that they are doing it. They can readily know when others are not being authentic and even when they are lying. Unaware empaths may mistake others’ mirrored insecurities as their own and believe falsely that others’ pain is theirs. They also may have no idea that what they feel, they can then project and reflect back. This ability can bring up intense feelings in others and also cause them to dislike empaths.

Case in point…..even as an adult, my father told me that I was crazy when I told him that the priest at the local Greek Orthodox church I frequented made my skin crawl. I became physically sick in his presence and he would avoid all eye contact with me. Many others told me I “should not feel that way.” This priest made his own rules and, for example, would not allow me to take communion since I was married by a non-orthodox minister. My father told me to ignore him until several years later my father read in the national news that Father Pappas was defrocked for allegedly having sex with men and women (he was Greek Orthodox and married by the way) and claimed in his letter to the bishop (that I read very carefully) that his “zeal for perfection” made him do it.

Empaths Need Focused Self-Care and Self-Compassion

Empaths need to be very mindful of their unique needs and develop and hone their self-care and self-compassion skills lots more than the average person. Empaths can become emotionally fatigued from taking in too much energy and from giving up too much. Some can even become rattled by sleeping in the same bed with another person. We need more down time and alone time to decompress and to recharge our “emotional batteries.”

Help can be a relative term to empaths who typically can have an overabundance of compassion and strong codependent tendencies. Helping others can frequently facilitate exploitation if they are not careful whom and where they focus their help and assess their real motives for doing so. Is it really helping or are you serving a personal need to rescue others and make things that are broken right again? No one can change the ungrateful but empaths can work on their self-esteem and learn to use their compassion more responsibly and focus it on those worthy of and who value your help, compassion, and generosity. When you do, the number of ungrateful people you help goes down immensely and the number of grateful ones increases. So empaths can benefit tremendously with self-esteem work and assertiveness classes that will help them to use their compassion more responsibly, manage personal boundaries, and rely more comfortably on their own selves rather than others for validation of their self-worth and to moderate their compassion.

Sign up here for free self-esteem building tips.

Empaths dealing with codependency issues may also fear being alone that triggers their fear of abandonment. There is a big difference between being single and living alone and being lonely. You can be with someone who invalidates and neglects you and disrespects you and never feel lonelier. So empaths must learn to embrace solitude. Living alone also can support our emotional healing and health.

Learn more how living alone can support emotional healing and health.

We are prone to anxiety from emotional fatigue so we must mindful of our sensitivities, consciously work to minimize toxicity, modulate our need to fix and rescue, and simply rest. Something as simple as hugs or touches or love from animals or the beauty of a painting can help empaths feel safe and assured in their own bodies again. I, for example, have learned to not sit in the middle of movie theaters or restaurants. Doing so brings me angst. I do not defend my position or wants. I just always do so or I will wait for a table or go early to the theatre or book my seats way in advance. I have learned to shut down my energy, sort of like hibernating with my eyes open in the presence of energy vampires and inauthentic people or simply leave the room rather than like in the past, feeling overwhelmed and powerless and defenseless to them. I no longer fear them. They are like annoying mosquitoes to me so I administer psychological insect repellent.

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Learn more here on how to deal with toxic people.

 

images-1We must learn to trust and rely on rather than be reactive to our emotions. We can do this by not rushing to judgment when our emotions are triggered and learn to patiently process them. I, for example, learned to put in extra effort to moderate my overabundance of compassion and empathy. I pay extra attention to my natural drive to fix others and rather than reacting impulsively when I see people or things that are “broken,” I take rational actions by stopping, thinking, and evaluating my options that include “doing nothing.” I focus most of my attention on ensuring I am not making others’ problems my own and help only when someone truly is lost and needs help rather than is not being accountable to his or her own responsibilities or goals.

I learned how to say no and not defend it and own it and follow through when I say yes. Whatever I decide is final and I do not second guess it or criticize myself for my decision or wait for someone to validate it. I simply trained myself not to because I learned to rely and trust on my emotions and my judgment which history has dictated are pretty much spot on.

I have also learned to use simple tools to not be impacted or to feel overwhelmed around toxic and inauthentic people and energy vampires by following the 3 simple steps in the Time – Distance – Shielding rule:

  1. Minimize your time with them.
  2. Maximize the distance between you and them.
  3. And put a shield between you and them.

Learn more here on how to deal with toxic people.

Your Empathy is a Gift – Embrace it!

imagesBeing empaths is who we are and we can’t change it, but we can accept ourselves without judgment and learn how to use our compassion more responsibly as well as tolerance for our own wonderfully unique and beautiful differences and learning how to use them effectively and protect them. There has never been and will never be another person like you in the history of the universe. We have been blessed and need to nourish and respect and honor and embrace our special gifts that not only add to our individual divinity but bring compassion, kindness, and caring to so many others who authentically deserve and need it. They are part of your authenticity and beauty and your unique divine design. So, hang tough in your truth and own, honor, care for, and protect these magnificent gifts you are uniquely worthy to possess!

Self-Compassion and Self-Care Are Fundamental to Emotional Health

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

images-3Most victims of childhood abuse (includes neglect and emotional invalidation) suffer into adulthood and become adult victims of adult abuse. Our self-esteem and personal identity and understanding of our self-worth suffer. We may have been punished for even attempting to care for ourselves. Consequently, we can feel shame for even taking care of our basic human needs. This vulnerability can be exaggerated in empaths who are predisposed to caring for and feeling responsible for others’ happiness.

We do not learn how to use our compassion responsibly and overcompensate by giving of ourselves too much and letting others who do not have our best interests at heart violate our personal boundaries and dishonor us. We allow them to control our emotions rather than we regulating our own. We bring this skewed thinking learned in childhood into adulthood and learn to neglect our own needs.

12651288_953089158121439_8456393630455492212_n-1Self-care and self-compassion are needed for healing because they “neutralize” the toxic emotions and empower ourselves to learn how to regulate our emotions again. These are good “habits” that relieve the pain and help us assimilate and reconnect with ourselves again. So, in effect self-care and self-compassion allow us an opportunity to witness our healing. They allow us to actively participate in our own healing and regain trust in ourselves and feel safe and secure in our own bodies. Self-care and self-compassion allow us to nourish our souls and are also critical to building self-worth, self-assurance and self-reliance and feel like “ourselves” again, not the pain addicted wounded versions who rely on abusers and manipulators who do not have our best interests at heart to alleviate our discomfort.

We CAN learn how to replace these old “harmful” habits with those that are self-serving to our emotional health and personal joy. We can learn to use our compassion responsibly and learn to focus our compassion and self-care more on ourselves.

“What?” You may ask. “How am I supposed to learn how to do that? I have trouble even saying no.”

Well…like anything, by learning how to and by practicing.

Here are some helpful tips that can help to get you on the right track. And remember PRACTICE PRACTICE PRACTICE. Use the tips that work for YOU!!!

  1. Pay attention to your own needs and wants. Get out of your head and learn to listen to and heed your bodily cues and emotions that exist to protect you.

Listen to what your body, your mind, and your heart are telling you. For instance, if your body is telling you that you have been sitting down too long, stand up and stretch. If your heart is longing to spend more time with a special friend, do it. If your mind is telling you to clean up your basement, listen to your favorite music, or stop thinking bad thoughts about yourself, take those thoughts seriously.

  1. Take very good care of yourself…..ALWAYS!!!!

images-4As you were growing up you may not have learned how to take good care of yourself. In fact, much of your attention may have been on taking care of others, on just getting by, or on “behaving well.” Perhaps you were even punished for thinking about and caring for yourself.

Begin today to take good care of yourself. Treat yourself as a wonderful parent would treat a small child or as a very best friend might treat another. If you work at taking good care of yourself, you will find that you feel better about yourself and you will learn you are deserving of your own self-care and learn self-reliance that will feed your self-esteem and self-worth.

Here are some suggestions:

  • Eat healthy foods and avoid junk foods (foods containing a lot of sugar, salt, or fat). A healthy daily diet is usually: five or six servings of vegetables and fruit, six servings of whole grain foods like bread, pasta, cereal, and rice, two servings of protein foods like beef, chicken, fish, cheese, cottage cheese, or yogurt.
  • Exercise. Moving your body helps you to feel better and improves your self-esteem. Arrange a time every day or as often as possible when you can get some exercise, preferably outdoors. You can do many different things. Taking a walk is the most common. You could run, ride a bicycle, play a sport, climb up and down stairs several times, put on a tape, or play the radio and dance to the music–anything that feels good to you. If you have a health problem that may restrict your ability to exercise, check with your doctor before beginning or changing your exercise habits.
  • Do special personal hygiene tasks to pamper and make you feel better about yourself such as a bubble bath, special hair conditioning or styling, manicures and pedicures, and teeth whitening.
  • Have a physical examination every year to make sure you are in good health.
  • Plan fun activities for yourself. Learn new things every day.
  • Take time to do things you enjoy. You may be so busy, or feel so badly about yourself, that you spend little or no time doing things you enjoy such as playing a musical instrument, doing a craft project, flying a kite, or going fishing. Make a list of things you enjoy doing. Then do something from that list every day. Add to the list anything new that you discover you enjoy doing.
  • Get something done that you have been putting off. Clean out that drawer. Wash that window. Write that letter. Pay that bill.
  • Do things that make use of your own special talents and abilities. For instance, if you are good with your hands, then make things for yourself, family, and friends. If you like animals, consider having a pet or at least playing with friends’ pets.
  • Dress in clothes that make you feel good about yourself. If you have little money to spend on new clothes, check out thrift stores in your area.
  • Give yourself rewards for being a great person such as listening to your favorite music or reading your favorite books or taking a trip to a museum.
  • Spend time with people who treat you well and make you feel good about yourself. Avoid people who treat you badly.
  • Make your living space a place that honors the person you are. Whether you live in a single room, a small apartment, or a large home, make that space comfortable and attractive for you. If you share your living space with others, have some space that is just for you, your own personal “slice of heaven” where you can keep your things and know that they will not be disturbed and that you can decorate any way you choose.
  • Display items that you find attractive or that remind you of your achievements or of special times or people in your life. If cost is a factor, use your creativity to think of inexpensive or free ways that you can add to the comfort and enjoyment of your space.
  • Make your meals a special time. Turn off the television, radio, and stereo. Set the table, even if you are eating alone. Light a candle or put some flowers or an attractive object in the center of the table. Arrange your food in an attractive way on your plate. If you eat with others, encourage discussion of pleasant topics. Avoid discussing difficult issues at meals.
  • Take advantage of opportunities to learn something new or improve your skills. Take a class or go to a seminar. Many adult education programs are free or very inexpensive. For those that are more costly, ask about a possible scholarship or fee reduction.
  • Begin doing those things that you know will make you feel better about yourself like going on a diet, beginning an exercise program or keeping your living space clean.
  • Do something nice for another person. Smile at someone who looks sad. Say a few kind words to the checkout cashier. Help your spouse with an unpleasant chore. Take a meal to a friend who is sick. Send a card to an acquaintance. Volunteer for a worthy organization.
  • imgres-3Make it a point to treat your self well every day. Before you go to bed each night, write about how you treated yourself well during the day and how you will treat your self tomorrow.
  1.   Learn how to manage boundaries.

Abusers and exploiters and bullies and especially narcissists are masters at pushing pain buttons, making people feel powerless, and getting people to let down their boundaries and getting them to give up their power to them. In fact, they enjoy doing it. They use charm and love as their camouflage. We become unknowingly complicit in our own abuse and exploitation. We innocently expose ourselves to some of the worst abuse and harm imaginable.

12654645_941891752514920_7863427450412629576_nPart of healing for those who were victims and continue to be susceptible to their attacks, then, is learning to maintain and protect your personal boundaries so you are not vulnerable to emotional predators.

Unfortunately, there is no electronic monitor like a home protection system you can purchase to warn you of impending “emotional” predators and attacks. However, you can strengthen your own internal monitors and learn new skills including honing your narcissist radar otherwise known as “NADAR” and honoring and “feeling” for and caring for your own wants and needs with compassion and defending your personal rights and authorities. These include assertively expressing what your rights, authorities, needs, and feelings are and recognizing and regulating your own emotions especially your pain-based ones and learning when they are triggered and who routinely triggers them. Just as important, then, is knowing WHAT makes you happy.

Read more on managing personal boundaries here.

Abuse survivors can also become notorious boundary violators themselves. We in healing must learn not only to manage our boundaries but also to respect other’s as well. People who are heavily dependent on others for self-worth particularly may have a hard time sourcing their own power and learning self-reliance. Codependents have learned to routinely not only let others violate their boundaries but also to violate other’s boundaries to source from them what they need to define their worth.

Learning boundary management by re-learning what personal rights are and where healthy authorities and boundaries start and finish will help you replace maladaptive thoughts, beliefs, and actions with healthy ones and help you make great strides in your healing.

  1.   Learn assertiveness skills including how to say “no.”

Learning assertiveness skills will not only protect your personal rights that support your self-esteem and self-care but will also help you keep your cool and prevent you from being manipulated and abused by those who push your pain and shame buttons. These skills can help immensely in boundary management that support and sustain your emotional health and mutually respectful and loving relationships.

  1.   Learn how to set and achieve goals.

Once you do be sure to develop your personal action and accountability plan, your life’s road map to achieving your goals and getting where you want to go and getting back on course when you “get lost.” Remember that your character, people skills, personal limitations, emotional makeup, and motivation level will impact achievement of goals. Mentors and coaches can help you generate your action plan, monitor your progress, hold you accountable, and develop alternate courses of actions when you hit roadblocks.

The Gentleman

Gut wrenchingly beautiful…th-2

by Sheri Spain, Detoxify You

I’ve met the most amazing gentleman, the man of my deepest dreams and desires.

Kindness, understanding, attentive. Handsome, giving, intelligent. A true gentleman who walks me safely to my car.

I’m fragile, I say. I’ve had loss.

I’ll never hurt you he assures.

Love overwhelms quickly, I share my awe with one and all.

He’s a gentleman, truly. My hero. My partner. My man. My soul mate. My King.

I am the Queen of his world, he says, I’m twitterpated. Quotes from Bambi?! Yes! Oh, my.

Marry me. Yes.

The nightmare begins softly, the very next week.

An ugly word or two. Uncharacteristic inconsideration. Excuses, apologies, gifts. Ignoring, complaining, forgetting. Intimacy withheld.

I’m sorry, I’m sorry, I love you. Don’t leave me.

What is wrong with me? His cries work their deceit.

It’s ok, I murmur. We are committed, we’ll work this out.

I should have listened to myself, my intuition, nagging concerns.

Tantrums, crazy-making, nonsensical demands commence.

My needs are dismissed, his concerns the only priority.

I’m sorry, I’m sorry, I love you. Don’t leave me.

What is wrong with me?

We mustn’t tell, no one will like me, he fears. He cries and moans.

Shares his agonies of life, such sadness and pain and tragedy.

A victim, many times over, at the hands of women. Psycho-bitches all.

I see and feel. Deeply. A knowing. A gift and a curse.

I give in. I trust again. Benefit of the doubt. Again. Stupid.

I’ll get help, he says. I’ll tell the truth.

Promises, promises, promises. Promises never ever kept, never ever meant. Just carrots dangling.

His secret became my secret. My burden to bear.

While his adoring fans gather ‘round. Rock star fantasy lives.

He quits his meds, dismisses his doctors. (He lied to them, too.)

Escalating crisis, erratic behavior. Danger dances. A roller coaster, ever-jumping tracks. Chaos reigns. He rules.

Alone, so alone. Suffocating in shallow and fallacy.

I call his adult daughter to encourage and support her Dad. She’s sorry. She’s not equipped to handle these behaviors he’s been plagued with all his life.

Shock, just shock. Manipulated. I’m not the first, second, or third.

Another discard, another souvenir. A serial abuser of women. A master manipulator.

Fear is the cacophony. No more mask at home. His Bundy is released. Charm and torture. He controls my food, my activities, when I can sleep.

Me. I’m dying as the servant of his twisted facade. Sucking me dry.

A vampire.

Forceful isolation. Degradation. Humiliation. Fear becomes terror.

His fists come out. My tears and pain belittled.

An accident, I didn’t mean to, I don’t remember. It’s your fault.

I’ve cowered in corners, his spittle in my face, finger poking my bones.

I’ve hidden weapons from him and slept in my car. Concealed the bruises. Keeping the secret. Co-dependent.

I try and try and try and try and try and try and try and try. I read and research and read some more while he saunters. And smirks. Does nothing. While I work. And work. And work.

Maybe this will work, maybe that will change. Maybe, maybe.

Accept the reality; let go of the dream. Turn to the cliff. Jump.

I tell him I’m done. He steals my resume, my writing. Spends the last of my money. Hoards his. Bribes for his minions.

Trapped. Scared. Don’t make him mad. Misery.

Months and months.

John Q matters significantly, I am nothing. Never was. Just a pawn.

His fury grows with non-reaction, upping the ante until I fight back.

He smiles with his victory hand; his game complete. Demonized.

It’s fun making you lose your mind, my tormentor taunts.

Go ahead and tell, no one will believe you. You’re the crazy one, He says. Not me. I’m a shaman and an alchemist. And a man of God.

My tribe says so. They say there’s nothing wrong with me. Sneer.

I understand. I get it. More lessons to be revealed.

For they all love the most amazing gentleman they’ve ever met.

Who never was.

Narcissistic Harm by Proxy

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

“People who sincerely care about you will actively listen and follow. Those who don’t will not. Healing is a time of self-evaluation that provides a great opportunity to clean your closet of legacy unhealthy relationships that are supporting the narcissist’s dirty dealings and preventing your healing and hindering your happiness.” 

I read frequently from viewers here and at many other sites who maintained no
contact but watching their children and friends be targeted continued to cause th-1them great fear and pain.

They also experience great pain from those they believe care about them who do not believe them or “do not want to get involved.”

Narcissistic harm by proxy perhaps?

No contact with abusers and especially narcissists is critical to healing. Narcissists, however, frequently target their own children and others you love and use them as pawns to get to you, their primary narcissistic supply. After all, if they cannot have our love and attention, why not settle for our angst, contempt and negative attention by using those we love and care about the most and turning them against us? Negative attention is attention after all, right?

What can we do to support the no contact rule for ourselves and protect ourselves AND our children and others we care about under these circumstances? Personally, this was my greatest fear for my child and my greatest challenge.

But no longer.

Here are some tips and recommendations that I use that I hope you find useful to keep you, your children, and loved ones on a path of emotional health and safety and your relationships intact.

  1. We have options and choices ALWAYS. You are no longer a victim or a target of what the narcissist COULD do in your personal relationships. You can only remain a victim or target if you continue to live in fear. There is a huge difference between REAL danger and fear of what COULD harm you. Remember always to call the police immediately if you are in any real physical danger or threat of physical harm. Use the legal system to acquire restraining orders if needed.
  1. You can also only remain a victim or target if your self-worth is not strong and is dependent on validation from others. This is no longer the case. We learn to use our compassion and empathy, what attracts narcissists to us, to benefit and protect us. Your innate emotional intelligence and new knowledge on emotional health and boundary management provide you with renewed personal power founded on new truth.
  1. The new family dynamic provides you opportunities to use your renewed personal power in your children’s and your favor. You most likely were raised in families where there were no boundaries and healthy rules of engagement or regard for your personal rights or authorities. I call this the “family amoeba,” the family glob. The glob no longer exists and has been replaced with new relationships and dynamics. Your spouse is no longer your spouse, rather the Ex. Your children are still your children. You are still the parent. Those, now, remember, are three or more DISTINCT relationships you are engaged in and that you have the right and authority to manage as you choose with newly established boundaries and the rules of engagement that support emotional health.
  1. Remember your personal power includes the ability to parent and educate your children and influence and educate your loved ones. Teach your children, friends, relatives EVERYTHING you can about narcissism and how to protect themselves from harm. This is an insipid and insidious disorder that needs to be brought into everyone’s levels of consciousness. Share with your children, no matter what their age, EVERYTHING you have learned, signs of narcissists, and especially how to manage and protect personal boundaries with everyone including you and the other parent. TELL THEM THE TRUTH ABOUT THE HARM OF ABUSE AND YOUR CHILDHOOD AND UPBRINGING. Teach them self-respect by demanding it in all your personal interactions and paying honor to your own personal rights and authorities. People who sincerely care about you will actively listen and follow. Those who don’t will not.

Healing is a time of self-evaluation that provides a great opportunity to clean your closet of legacy unhealthy relationships that are supporting the narcissist’s dirty dealings and preventing your healing and hindering your happiness.

Why Understanding the Differences Between Harm, Fear, and Real Danger is Fundamental to Your Healing and Well-Being

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

images-2I write frequently about the differences between aggression and power.  I’d like to expand on this topic as it relates to harm, fear and danger a bit more because understanding this is critical to your healing

We Believe Falsely that We are Defenseless

After we are repeatedly harmed, our fear and other pain-based responses can malfunction and go into overdrive because we have been traumatized and our perception of our personal power falsely and temporarily squelched by years of abuse. Consequently, our coping and defense mechanisms that define and nourish our personal power never develop and the trauma and pain becomes chemically programmed into our brain cells. We become trauma addicted. We become heavily dependent on others rather than ourselves to define our self-worth and power. This is not adaptive and does not support our emotional health or healthy relationships! Rather, we stay subconsciously trapped to irrational pain and fears (our neuroses) which keep us vulnerable to narcissists and other covert aggressors who hunt for and feed off of our vulnerabilities.

Emotional vampires are experts on identifying targets with these neuroses-based vulnerabilities. In addition, once we are in relationships with narcissistic abusers, we can end up grossly overestimating danger based on past harm and grossly underestimating our ability to deal with it. What we perceive as “dangers” can really be “triggers” that are pushing our childhood trauma buttons and our childhood feelings of pain and powerlessness! Read this again. Our fears can be false! In reality, our desire for our abuser is an addiction to the trauma they create. Now this does not mean that a narcissist cannot ever pose a real threat to you or your children and can never harm you. If you ever feel you are in real danger, leave and call 911 or your local authorities immediately. However, what it does mean, on the other hand, is that:

  1. You can falsely fear them because you think they are dangerous when in reality they are not and
  2. You can falsely think you are defenseless when in reality you are not.

Small mosquitoSo that big bad wolf narcissist, that vampire whom you think will suck your life’s blood dry is in actually just a weak manipulative annoyance, an aggressive mosquito that has learned to push the right buttons just like the weak coward behind the curtain pretending to be the all powerful Oz by creating an illusion of smoke and mirrors. Aggression is not synonymous with power, strength or danger, folks! The result?

We can think we are in danger and defenseless and panic ourselves unnecessarily when in reality, we are safe and just need to take our power back. We are fearing a powerless being who cannot generate their own energy and who learned to go after other’s power aggressively. We can remain trauma addicted and mistake it for love for our abusers! Our neuroses and low self-esteem allow us to become complicit in our own abuse and in the abuse of our children! We remain victims of abuse because we were conditioned to think like victims in our childhood. We end up with skewed perceptions of what harm, fear, and danger really are and falsely think we are unable to deal with them. We can even go so far as to choose staying with an abuser that we fear less than, for example, being single because we relate that to abandonment that we fear more!

Our Irrational Fears Can Perpetuate Abuse

if-you-dont-heal-your-painIt is this irrational thinking that allows us unknowingly to let abusers who cannot generate their own energy target and exploit us and is the origin of how abuse is perpetuated from generation to generation as we teach our children to think the same way. Understanding this is necessary for your healing so read this carefully and process this and bring it into the forefront of your thinking. Until we are able to deal with these false beliefs, we can stay emotionally connected to the abusers even if we have no contact and this is why.

Energy vampires feed on our responses not only fueled by ego-driven need for revenge and justice but also our personal fears. We end up keeping the narcissistic supply going and keeping ourselves connected to them and they continue being our and our children’s emotional puppet masters. When we fear someone or something, we give them the power to control us!

“When you can shift the pain and fear out of your cells of what the narcissist is doing, or may do, you stop feeding his or her energy.” ~Melanie Tonia Evans

We Need to Take Our Power Back

imgresRemember that the ex-girlfriend, boyfriend, sister, father, mother, co-worker are nothing more than weak bullies, nothing but simple predictable energy vampires. Without you and your attention and energy, they shrivel up and die like the Wicked Witch of the West on the Wizard of Oz. A bucket of water destroyed her. The “Great and Powerful Oz” was a weak coward presenting an illusion of greatness and power. Dorothy and her entourage had the brains, heart, courage, and answers all the time. And so do you!

But in order to take your power back, you need to acknowledge and release the pain, shame, and fear first – those deep seated pains from repressed childhood wounds that raise their ugly heads when our trauma buttons are pushed. In addition, our own egos can keep us trapped in this pain. Is your personal pride and fear of shame keeping you from admitting the truth? Those of you who are reading this (who do not have personality disorders), and you know who you are, who claim that they were not abused in childhood are lying to yourselves. Abuse and aggression can be covert or overt. Passive and covert aggressors do just as much psychological damage as overt abusers. Neglect is abuse. Invalidation is abuse. So stop fooling yourselves so you can move forward to uncover your past to recover your future. The point is this, folks.

Narcissistic abusers have aggressive manipulative personalities. They are born wired that way. They search for and find victims who they are able to manipulate to get what they need because that is just what they do. They are human predators, human parasites. Abusers are everywhere! They find us. We do not find them. In addition, aggression is not synonymous with strength or danger. Remember, however, they do not prey on emotionally fit people because emotionally fit people do not have the vulnerabilities abusers know their victims need in order for their manipulation efforts to be successful. But we have the power and option not to let them. That is once we embrace and release our pain and take ourselves and our power back. Once we learn narcissists are aggressive but weak and we are not powerless or defenseless to them, once we stop thinking like victims, once we learn to regulate our own pain, we no longer become victims not only to narcissists but also to our own thinking. The narcissists, I promise you, disappear like the wind. So stop feeding the beasts and take your power backYour children will heal through you! This is how we break the cycle of intergenerational abuse. This is how we heal. This is how we thrive.

You Shouldn’t Feel That Way

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

screen-shot-2016-12-20-at-3-08-31-pmEver heard “you shouldn’t feel that way” or “don’t feel that way” or my favorite, “get over it.” This is the single most damaging things anyone could say to another human being. And this is why.

Our feelings and emotions and even our pain-based ones are here to protect us! Our feelings are our internal cues we need to gauge the external world we live in including those who respect and honor us and our personal boundaries and those you don’t.

12715486_1200094996686586_3855673423186007016_n

Our pain-based emotions like guilt, shame, fear, and sadness exist to protect us from harm by causing us to “put on the brakes,” stop, think, and course correct and choose a “safer” path. How do blind and deaf people dream? Of course, in emotions because it is in feeling that we become who we are and dreams are where we “practice.” So our dreams are not all pleasant ones but they reflect our unconscious maturing of our emotional capabilities.

It is the role of parents or caregivers to teach children to trust and rely on their emotions – to become emotionally healthy integrated human beings. When they do not such as when we are neglected and abused, we are taught to betray our own selves and NOT rely and trust our own selves. Our pain-based emotions become toxic rather than serving their protective functions. We are conditioned to not source our personal power and to believe falsely we deserve the pain and are powerless to it.

This is the core to the damaging consequences of all abuse and in particular, emotional invalidation.

READ MORE HERE ON HOW EMOTIONS BECOME TOXIC IN ABUSE SURVIVORS.

20245415_1521798901175880_7119720137647714483_nNot having our emotions validated is called “invalidation.” It is the worst of abuse and the core of narcissistic abuse! If we grow up without having our emotions and feelings acknowledged regardless if we have the best of everything or not, we learn to suppress rather than trust and rely on our emotions. We learn to distrust rather than trust our internal protective mechanisms. We develop chronic uncertainty rather than confidence in our abilities that prevents us from reaching our true potential. We become reactive to situations and people and become dependent on others rather than ourselves to define our worth and soothe our discomfort. We become shame addicted and suffer from exaggerated self-loathing, self-hate, and self-sabotage. We believe falsely that we are the source and cause of our pain and believe we are powerless to alleviate it. This is all a lie!

We are feeling defective pain-based emotions resulting from the pain and shame that our abusers projected onto us when we were defenseless and dependent on them for safety and security and validation. The consequences?

We abandon our own selves! We bring thinking that served to protect us when we were children into adulthood where the thinking no longer serves us but, rather, harms us. We believe falsely that only those who cause the pain have the power to alleviate it. Again, this is all a lie.

Cannot heal at same level as painWe cannot heal at the same level of thinking that causes and sustains our emotional pain! We become self-critical people pleasers with chronic low self-esteem and victim mentality. We not only let others routinely violate our personal boundaries but also ourselves become notorious boundary violators. We become clueless to where our and other’s personal rights start and finish.

Without healthy functioning emotions we have no reliable internal cues to gauge our self-worth. We end up reliant on others who do not have our best interests at heart to gauge our personal value, our personal worth. We become emotionally starved. We become rescuers and do not learn to use our compassion responsibly. We become vulnerable to emotional predators including narcissists, bullies, incompetent politicians, and con artists who know how to play on our vulnerabilities like a fiddle!

This is a primary root cause of emotional exhaustion, anxiety, panic attacks, trauma addictions, codependencies, chemical addictions, low self-esteem, low self-worth, phobias, fears, pain addictions, intergenerational abuse, illnesses, personality disorders, depression and even many health and autoimmune disorders.

If you are suffering from any of these or are just emotionally fatigued or just plain unhappy and think you had a great upbringing, think again. You are fooling yourself and are in denial. It is time to tap into the root causes of your suppressed pain, release it, learn what triggers it, and learn new coping mechanisms to handle your emotions and extreme emotional dependence on others before the pain escalates. It is time to break your pain addictions! It is time to take your power back.

705466_cover_mockup1-1I explore these issues in much more detail in my book Take Your Power Back: Healing Lessons, Tips, and Tools for Abuse Survivors

It provides a step-by-step “go at your own pace” recovery plan including lessons, tips, tools, and workbooks to help your recover from your pain addictions and your false beliefs of powerlessness and defenselessness. It will teach you how to take your power back and thrive. You can read a free sneak peek and review of the book and purchase a copy here.

The answers lie within! I am here to help you in your search! It is an honor to do so.

Yourlifelifter Launches New Website

Alexandra Ryan, Yourlifelifter

Yourlifelifter Banner

Yourlifelifter, a web-based life-coaching and information center that supports emotional health and well-being is happy to announce the launch of its new website at https://yourlifelifter.wordpress.com to complement its growing Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/yourlifelifter.

Yourlifelifter is successfully helping tens of thousands of people from across the globe address life, career, self-esteem, and emotional health issues.

Included on the website is the Yourlifelifter Blog and a new and growing product line that includes life coaching and career coaching services, Sevenpoint2 and  Earth’s Living Clay nutritional health supplements, essential oils, and Melanie Tonia Evans’ Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Program.

Evelyn Ryan, the Founder of Yourlifelifter, is the author of Take Your Power Back: Healing Lessons, Tips, and Tools for Abuse Survivors that is scheduled to be released for international distribution in Summer 2015.

Welcome to the Yourlifelifter Community!

Thank you for your continued support.

Together we heal! Together we thrive!

Tips for Dealing with the Shame of Betrayal

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

shameThe primary pain that we experience from abuse is shame. Abuse is betrayal of intimate trust. Abuse is abandonment. Unlike guilt, which is the result of feeling bad about what you do in the external world, shame reflects feelings of failure inside, as a person.

Shame is experienced as self-blame. You perceive yourself as flawed, inferior, contemptible, no good. Shame is a normal unconscious human emotion that helps us “put on the brakes” by taking cues from our external environment.

The problem is that you may have too much of it which is the case for victims of abuse.
Shame can become a normal feeling for victims of abuse. We also give up most of our personal power and abandon our own selves.

Shame is the part of you that you can’t face because it is so intolerable. In the words of John Bradshaw, “toxic shame” is an “emotion that gets internalized as a state of being.”

Toxic shame becomes part of a what I refer to as the “Shame Triad” of self-blame, self-loathing, and self-sabotaging behaviors.

Too much shame can make us targets of toxic manipulators and keep us powerless to them and trigger anger at inappropriate times.

Shame can keep us trauma addicted to our abusers.

Tips for Dealing with Shame

        1. Turn your compassion and tolerance towards yourself to accept yourself, warts and all, as a valuable person.
          • Forgive yourself first. Acknowledge your fallibility as a person and that you were a victim. This will help you release the self-blame and empower yourself to stop thinking falsely that you are weak, powerless, and defenseless.
          • Be consistent and fair with sharing your compassion and tolerance with yourself as well as with others.
          • Go first with your compassion! Learn to be tolerant of yourself first. Know when to quit, rest, say you’ve had enough, and to put yourself first. This is not selfish. This is self preservation and what emotionally healthy people do.
          • Respect your OWN personal boundaries and protect your vulnerabilities. Demonstrate kindness and acceptance to yourself. Do not violate your own personal wishes, body, trust, time, privacy, feelings, and property.
          • Do not let other people violate your personal boundaries. This includes learning how to not say yes when you mean no. It also includes not letting your boundaries down by sharing too much of your personal information with others too soon.
          • Do not violate other people’s boundaries.
          • Stop defending your feelings, preferences, trust, time and choices to 11193380_10153090646497819_7384925641187409522_nabusers. Abusers use this as an opportunity to abuse and exploit you more and expose you to more trauma and shame. If you must respond to their sneaky insults or criticisms, just say, “That’s interesting. Let me think about it.” Then ignore them and turn them into a non-issue.
          • Focus on gratitude for what you have. My mother told me if you have food, a roof over your head, your health and people who love you, you have everything. She was right.
          • Avoid black and white thinking that focuses only on “good” or “bad” outcomes for yourself. Look at your track record.
          • Refrain from complaining about what you disagree with or do not like in yourself. If you have nothing nice to say or think about yourself, don’t say or think it.
          • Welcome and view disagreements from trusted individuals or differences not as criticism but as motivations for you to learn more, for you to become a person of integrity.
          • Give yourself a break. Be careful to understand the difference between rejecting the “sin” and rejecting the “sinner.” Learn to say “who cares?” more.
          • Do not judge a book by its cover. Do not rush to judgment. Refrain from developing an opinion, before you get all the facts. If in doubt, ask a wise trusted friend.
          • Refrain from making yourself the brunt of jokes or laughter.
          • Do not always stand in the back of the line. Allow yourself to go first sometimes.
        2. Educate yourself on shame and its debilitating effects.
        3. Learn to identify the feeling of shame as it occurs in your daily life and write in a journal about situations and relationships that trigger shame.
          • Challenge your emotions. Ask yourself which ones result from lack of compassion and tolerance for yourself. Check the list above.
          • Work on these areas as trigger points of shame and do what you can to avoid them or minimize their harmful effects.
          • Get rid of toxic friends who habitually violate your trust.
        4. Take anger management classes. Shame triggers anger.
        5. Look at your track record from youth. Recall the people in your childhood who had something good to say about you…those who were kind to you. Teachers, clergy, neighbors, a surrogate parent or relative perhaps. What words did they use to describe your best qualities? How did you feel when you were around them? Revive these important people from your past by writing about them in a journal and exploring what their support meant to you, then and now.
        6. If you are religious or spiritual, turn to your Higher Power or Source to cleanse yourself of the shame and unworthiness that you feel so deeply. Religion and spiritual practice can be tremendous sources of inner sustenance and can provide an ideal vision to replace the negative role models and scenarios of the past.
        7. Get honest constructive unbiased feedback. Share your struggles with working this step on support blogs, meetings, a trusted wise friend, and Websites and Facebook pages like Yourlifelifter.
        8. Seek professional therapy if you are not progressing in your healing and recovery. You most likely are trauma addicted. Trauma bonding occurs when you rely on your abuser for your safety, happiness, or security. Here are a few examples:
            • You long for and miss your abusers.
            • You make excuses for them.
            • You replay painful interactions with your abusers over and over again trying to figure out what you did wrong.

In addition, in order to resolve shame addictions, an ongoing reparative relationship with a qualified therapist can help you challenge your internal voice of shame and replace it with a healthier dialogue. A skilled therapist can be an important ally in helping you to transform the shame into self-acceptance.

Talk about your shame with him/her and share how you experienced shame in your childhood and in your life including in your therapy sessions. With your therapist’s help, identify the ways in which you keep yourself from feeling your shame by adopting a role or “false self” that you portray to others based on what you think it acceptable to them rather than yourself. Share this “false self” with your therapist and try to understand what the role gives you that you feel you lack inside. This can help home in on the shame triggers that you can work to acknowledge, challenge, and release and replace with new rational beliefs and emotions that support your emotional health and well being.

How Do We Remove Toxic People from Our Lives?

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

11248949_10152916566146439_9136272755930132611_o

You know who they are.

The ones you do not look forward to seeing.

The ones who demand EVERYONE’s attention…always.

The ones YOU must accommodate or you will “hear” about it.

The ones who sit quietly in meetings. That is until the end and repeat what you or someone else said or disagree with it with panache just to make you look bad.

The ones who can suck the air out of a room.

They are everywhere – work, church, your neighborhood, your family, your home.

romans-2How do we remove them from our lives?

Well, the answer is pretty simple.

TAKE ACTION!

DO NOT RE-ACT!

We can’t change them but we can very easily take actions to minimize their deleterious effects on us.

This is how.

th-1It is called the Time – Distance –  Shielding (TDS) rule and it is used to control hazards in industries world-wide. It works just as effectively with people.

This is how the TDS rule works.

  1. Minimize your time with them.
  2. Maximize the distance between you and them.
  3. And put a shield between you and them.

These three objectives can be accomplished in many ways that will allow you to act on your free will and protect your personal rights and minimize their toxic effects!

The more toxic they are, however, the more drastic the actions you should take.

Let’s explore these options for removing toxic people.

LEARN TO SAY “NO”

You may be able to mitigate most of the impacts from toxic people by just learning to say “no” assertively, calmly, and non-aggressively. This may be difficult for some and especially “people pleasers,” so self-esteem work and assertiveness skills can help immensely in learning not to say “yes” when you really mean “no” while maintaining your cool and composure.  Simply saying “no” will also benefit you by making you feel more empowered and in control of your life and by plain just limiting the amount of time you interact with them.

LEARN ALL YOU CAN ABOUT COVERT AGGRESSORS AND THEIR TACTICS

Toxic people have covert aggressive personalities and prey on empathetic, kind, conscientious people who they believe they can successfully attack and defeat. Why? Well, they lack empathy and personal power and so they have learned to covertly but aggressively go after other people’s power, attention, money or whatever. They want all the benefits that you have to offer without doing any of the work. They also use you to help maintain an illusion of grandeur and makes others perceive them as powerful when in fact, like the Wizard of Oz, they are a mere illusion of smoke and mirrors that a scruffy dog exposed.  They are masterful at triggering your vulnerabilities (e.g. pains, fears, insecurities, apprehensions, compassion, conscientiousness), putting you on the defensive, and making you let down your boundaries and then wham! They have got you where they want you. They then go in for the kill and manipulate your power from you.

Learning all you can about covert aggressors and their lack of compassion and depraved need to win along with assertiveness skills and doing self-esteem work can help you make huge strides to stand up to these creeps, manage boundaries, and shield yourself in a cool, calm and collected manner. Your sense of defenselessness and powerlessness will diminish and your self-worth, self-respect, and self-assurance will soar!

NEVER LET THEM SEE YOU SWEAT

Reacting emotionally to toxic people advertises your vulnerabilities to them and then they more actively and aggressively pursue you. So even if they have pushed your buttons, divert from the situation to allow yourself time to calm down and think. Just say you are busy and need some time to think about it or say something neutral like “That’s interesting. I never heard it put that way before,” and then say no or remove yourself from the situation. When in doubt say nothing.

PUT UP AND MAINTAIN PROTECTIVE BOUNDARIES

th-1Toxic people are notorious boundary violators and are masters of covert manipulation to get you to let down your personal boundaries. So putting real or imagined space between you and them may be the most readily available shielding. Shutting the door to your office or listening to music can serve as barriers to their “noise.” Imagining a protective light forcefield around your body can also be a very effective defense to ward off their offensive maneuvers. Delete their messages or texts without reading them and, if you find this difficult, block them on Facebook and on your cell phone to facilitate having “no contact” with them to allow your wounds to heal fully without have your pain-buttons triggered.

Read more here on how managing boundaries is critical to emotional health.

KEEP A COOL HEAD – LEARN TO MANAGE YOUR EMOTIONS

Even if they are sabotaging you behind your back or perhaps even actively bullying, keeping a cool head and addressing the “facts” are fundamental in keeping the emotional element out of the equation. It is so easy for them to focus on your emotional state or your defensiveness to divert from the real issue which is their unacceptable behavior and harmful motives and point the problem to you. Vilifying the victim is a common combat tactic they use to trigger your emotions, put you on the defensive, get you to react and let your boundaries down, and feed their insatiable need to win. Not reacting will keep the attention on their depraved action, not on your reactions that they use to support their illusion of lies. This is how you can maintain and defend your personal power and defuse them in parallel.

Remember. Learning assertiveness skills and doing self-esteem work can help you make huge strides to stand up to these creeps, manage boundaries, and shield yourself in a cool, calm and collected manner and diminish your sense of defenselessness and powerlessness. Your self-worth, self-respect, and self-assurance will soar!

REGISTER FOR FREE SELF-ESTEEM BUILDING TIPS HERE!

CUT TIES WITH THEM

In your personal life, it may just be best to cut ties with the toxic individual. Everyone has redeeming qualities however toxicity is not one of them. They are energy vampires and accepting them for who they are can help release your empathetic need to rescue them. They need to go after others’ energy because they cannot generate their own. Accept also that you do not have to give up your energy to anyone unless you choose to. These are your personal rights and authority that you should always honor. Normally, when you learn to say no and put yourself first, they move on anyway. If you feel compelled to say anything, simply tell them the truth that you are at a different stage in your life and that your paths are no longer crossing and these are causing a conflict. Then wish them well.

Cutting ties with toxic people. shark

Cutting ties does not mean we no longer care for our friends or relatives. We cannot and should not turn off our feelings like a faucet. It does mean, however, that we have chosen to take a stand and put our self-worth, welfare, emotional health, and honor ahead of others who do not and cannot have our best interests at heart. Self-esteem work and assertiveness training can provide you the peace of mind and skills to easily manage the boundaries between them and you and identify when they are using you at your expense for their benefit and empower you to no longer allow it.

HOW DO SUCCESSFUL PEOPLE MANAGE THEIR EMOTIONS WHEN DEALING WITH TOXIC PEOPLE

Dr. Travis Bradberry in his article, “How Do Successful People Handle Toxic People” provides 12 very coping strategies for managing emotions when dealing with toxic people. He reports that 90% of top performers use these skills to manage stress and keep toxic people at bay by controlling what they can and eliminate what you can’t. The important thing he reminds us all is that we are in control of far more than we realize.

Take your power back, act on your free will, protect your personal rights, and learn how to say no!

I hope you find these tips useful!

Are You Struggling with Figuring Out What You Really Want?

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

Reposted from April 2014. Excerpted from I Could Do Anything If I Only Knew What It Was by Barbara Sher as modified by Evelyn Ryan.

                              To love a life that is exciting and fulfilling, you can’t do what’s “right,”                                                   you have to do what’s right for you. ~ Barbara Sher

th-33Are you personally struggling with figuring out what it is you really want? Are you “stuck in the muck?”

I am.

I have no emergencies in my life to address and no “fires” to put out.

My only daughter and child will be graduating soon and will be off to college.

Everything in my life has changed unexpectedly and I do not know what to with myself now.

Can you relate?

If you can, how do we get “unstuck from the muck” and deal with this dilemma?

Don’t panic.

You are fine, I am fine. We are fine. The answers are inside us.

th-32They are just blocked and we need to unblock them.

Simple. So do not judge yourself and accept that you DO have the answers. Do not let this blur your vision and make you bitter or sad.

This is NOT A TEST that we pass or fail. You, we just have to be curious and search for the answers with positivity, humility, patience and kindness for ourselves…as we would guide a child. We need to identify the inner conflicts, that inner voice, those invisible limiting beliefs that prevent us from making a change and pursuing what we really love.

Do not let inner conflicts or fears cloud your judgment and lead to despair. Do not “what if” yourself to death or catastrophize which can scare you to death or lead to depression.

So what could be blocking us from creating a clear vision?

Is it fear such as fear of lost income, fear of success, fear of failure, fear of change, fear of being trapped, fear of uncertainty?

Do you feel you’ve done it all or are too young or too old to pursue that goal? Is that goal too big for you?

Or perhaps your life has changed, like mine and you don’t have the first idea how to redesign your life? Or perhaps this is the first time you have had to focus on yourself?

th-31Well, I am personally struggling with creating direction and goals. Everything is going pretty well in my life and I do not really NEED anything. I am also pretty well adjusted and don’t need any internal “fixing.” My challenge is that everything in my life has changed and I have to start a new one at 56 years old!

So the real question we seek to answer is this…

What would our life be and look and feel like if we had no obstacles?

So as I seek the answers, I shall continue to share the lessons I learn with you.

And together, let us find the answers that work best for us individually and help us on a path to figure out what we love and pursue our goals, achieve inner peace and contentment and be the best that we can be.

“The universe is not going to see someone like you again in the entire history of creation.” Vartan Gregorian

Yourlifelifter is Now Offering Life Coaching and Career Coaching

Emotionally fatigued? Scared? Stuck in your job or career?

Need direction?

Has therapy not worked for you?

Get PERSONALIZED coaching from Certified Professional Life Coach, Career Coach, and Abuse (including narcissistic abuse) Recovery Expert, Evelyn Ryan.

Evelyn tailors coaching to YOUR individual needs and goals!

Life Coaching packages include:

1. FREE self assessment.
2. FREE half hour session with Evelyn to review results.
3. Unlimited emails.
4. Compassionate accountability to healing goals from someone who has been where you are and who has successfully healed.
5. Unique recovery approach with a 20 year success in addressing hidden traumas.
6. Flexible packages and schedules to meet your needs
7. Worldwide correspondence how you choose by telephone and/or Skype.

For more information on life coaching packages and to request self assessment questionnaire, click here.

For more information on career coaching packages, click here.

Understanding Why Narcissists Targeted You is Fundamental to Healing

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

1098228_1187695837924727_3159249499669189930_nAre you compassionate? Empathetic?

Well, if you are, you are one of 40% of the population who are a prime target for scapegoaters, bullies, narcissists, con-artists, and sociopaths who comprise a subset of the remaining 60% of the population. So being a “nice” person is your double-edged sword and most likely why you are reading this.

According to Dr. Jane McGregor, empaths are ordinary people who are highly perceptiveimgres-6 and insightful and belong to the 40% of human beings who sense when something’s not right, who respond to their gut instinct, and who take action and speak up. They frequently like the child in the The Emperor’s New Clothes, will tell the truth and expose lies and wrong doing and are targets of scapegoaters, bullies, narcissists, and sociopaths who are driven by exaggerated envy and fear of shame, lack of compassion, and the inability to self sooth.

LISTEN TO THIS PROVOCATIVE DISCUSSION ON “THE TOXIC TANGO OF EMPATHS AND NARCISSISTS.”

In the 1990s, researchers suggested that there was a positive relationship between empathy and emotional intelligence. Since then, that term has been used interchangeably with emotional literacy. What this means in practice is that empaths have the ability to understand their own emotions, to listen to other people and empathize with their emotions, to express emotions productively and to handle their emotions in such a way as to improve their personal power.

Dr. McGregor describes that people are often attracted to empaths because of their compassionate nature. A particular attribute is that they are sensitive to the emotional distress of others. Conversely, they have trouble comprehending a closed mind and lack of compassion in others. This is a limitation that empathetic “nice” people have and that you need to bring into your level of awareness and glue into your memory banks.

imgres-2This inability to see the “bad” in others also significantly enhances their vulnerability to attacks from emotional vampires throughout their lives. As a result, empaths can be targeted easily by energy vampires such as scapegoaters, bullies, narcissists, and sociopaths who enlist other uncompassionate and apathetic people in their wrong-doing. So in actuality, abused children and adults in the world are some of the “nicest” people in the world. This is crazy making, folks, and is the heart of scapegoating and abuse in families and in my opinion, one of the main causes of evil in society today. The number one reason people seek counseling is because they were scapegoated as a child and suffer post traumatic distress. This is psychological trauma! Read on.

Empaths use their ability to boost their and others’ well being and safety. Dr. McGregor found it interesting how often people see empaths in problematical terms. Dr. McGregor in her research found that most people, the 60% majority, prefer the easy life. She explains that some of us admire people who make a bold stand, while others feel uneasy about them.

Listen to and learn more on this compelling and provocative topic discussed with Evelyn Ryan on Mental Health News Radio here.

images-3Problems escalate for empaths, however, when apaths are in the vicinity. Empaths can be brought down, distressed and forced into the position of the lone fighter by the inaction of more apathetic types round them. This is also how school and work group bullying and scapegoating works. The bullies enlist the apathetic, fearful, and defenseless ones who are the ones most likely to go with the flow, to agree that the emperor/empress is wearing new clothes. Apaths behave defenselessly because they want to avoid unpleasant or harmful circumstances [including the bully turning on them]. Apathy is an avoidance strategy that contributes to abuse…by proxy!

Listen and learn more on “The Toxic Tango of Empaths and Narcissists.

images-2Kim Saeed, a narcissistic abuse recovery expert, says that narcissists prey on empaths and highly sensitive people. Empaths operate predominately from love, humility, and giving. They have a natural capacity for healing and teaching others. However, until they learn how to responsibly use those gifts, they are often taken advantage of…not only by romantic partners, but people in general. Further, empaths have a track record of developing codependent behaviors in childhood to deal with the overwhelming unfairness in the world and to please others, which they usually carry into their adult relationships. It is easy to see, then, how empaths who were abused as children can develop exaggerated codependency issues and dependence on others to define their worth.

Kim further explains that when the empath and narcissist enter into a relationship together, it becomes hyper toxic. It creates a magnetic, yet vibrationally dysfunctional union. The empath’s sole purpose is to facilitate healing in others. Narcissists are insatiable and incurable. The empath gives to the point of complete and utter exhaustion. Because of these natural tendencies, the unaware empath often finds themselves not only being targeted by a narcissist but staying in a relationship with a toxic personality for too long and the damage to them is compounded.

So, all you empathetic and empathic people who suffered and are recovering from abuse as a child, childhood bullying, adult bullying and went on to marry a narcissist or more than one narcissist, bring this into your level of awareness during your healing. Educate yourself, your children and others on their inability to see the “bad” in others, the wolves in sheep’s clothing. This significantly increases your vulnerability to 60% of people, who not only comprise narcissists, bullies, and psychopaths but also the weak ones who join these abusers or harm you further by doing nothing (inaction) because they lack the heart or courage (that you have) to just do the right thing.

I hope you find this useful in your recovery and search for truth!