Are you scared that if you validate your emotions, or the trauma you've experienced that you'll turn into a self-pitying, self-indulgent whiner?
It's not so! Validating our emotions helps us process and move through them.
In this episode I explain the difference between validating our emotions and indulging them.
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Validation Vs. Indulgence
Today we’re talking about the difference between validating ourselves and indulging ourselves.
Validation: recognition or affirmation that a person or their feelings or opinions are valid or worthwhile.
Indulgence: allow oneself to enjoy the pleasure of.
So, when it comes to validation: Often our families didn’t do this - our interactions with them caused us to discount our feelings and our opinions about things.
We erased our true experience in order to survive in family dysfunction.
That can be traumatic - meaning that can be too much too soon too fast for our systems to handle. Because it’s a betrayal of ourselves. And - because we didn’t get the validation we needed as developing children and little ones - we end up needing it so deeply and so badly in adulthood. But if we try to push against the need for it, it sort of stays in the shadows and comes out in our unhealthy attachments to others. Because our systems are repeating the loop of needing that validation. So we can end up feeling really needy and fragile and weak inside and frail when we haven’t received a lot of validation. And this can show up in a couple ways. One - we can be outwardly needy of others and overly attached to others. And two, we can be completely detached from others and ourselves and become very hard and rigid and defensive because we’re so disconnected from our need for validation.
And so it’s important for us to recognize and witness this deep need for validation within ourselves so that we can begin to give it to ourselves.
Many strong, high-performing people struggle to validate their emotions and trauma. They believe that validating and acknowledging their feelings, their past, what happened, they are indulging themselves and they should just get over it and move on. But the more they try to get over it and move on the worse they feel and the more disconnected they feel. And the more disconnected and bad they feel, the more they try to just keep pushing and get over it and move on.
And so it’s important to recognize this distinction between validating yourself and indulging yourself so that you can give your system mind, body and spirit the seeing and the witnessing that it needs in order to feel safe to process emotions. To embody self-acceptance and self-awareness and connection with yourself and your body and spirit.
Validation involves grace, compassion, self-forgiveness, acceptance
Acknowledging, creating space for, and accepting feelings
“Yes - that happened”
“Yes - that is how you feel”
“Yes - that is what you think”
So validation is mirroring - offering a container of space
My irresponsible behaviour is acceptable because of how I feel
All my thoughts about situations are right because of how they make me feel.
This happened and it made me feel this way therefore I do not have to show up for my life or be responsible for myself and my decisions.
People who don’t understand me or validate me are toxic
People must validate me
People who don’t validate me are bad
Validation is loving, indulgence is petulant and pitying. Kind of bratty.
Validation leads to processing emotions and moving through them with embodiment. Validation leads to deep empathy for ourselves and others. Validation leads to moving forward in life, healing and business and performance.
Validation can embrace and move through discomfort.
Validation acknowledges the impact of trauma.
Indulgence leads to staying stuck and mired in emotions and this becomes a personality. It prevents us from reaching our goals in life and business. It involves entitlement and believing that the present moment owes you for the past you suffered. Indulgence leads to us pitying ourselves and others.
Indulgence pities and gives up in the face of discomfort.
Indulgence causes us to be defined by the impact of trauma and stay stuck in a trauma paradigm.
Indulgence keeps us stuck. It feels really good in the moment but it’s a vicious cycle.