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lucette

Registered: 05/24/08
Posts: 1,700
 #1 
I've read here in the past where folks say they have given themselves to others and done everything for others.  John has just reminded me of an old book which we found at a charity second hand book sale some years ago, and which I found really helpful.  It is "When Helping You is Hurting Me - Escaping the Messiah Trap" by Carmen Renee Berry. I think it was also endorsed by Bernie, but since I don't have my copy right here I can't be sure.

This author talks about how we are different kinds of "messiahs" and I think from memory the list goes something like this - Counselor, Protector, Pleaser, Rescuer, Giver, Teacher and Crusader.  I was a Crusader - I committed to all sorts of social justice issues.  Anyway, I assumed responsibility and worked beyond my physical means at times.  I was also a Protector.  This book helped me see that and I am still learning!!  If it is still available it might help others who get burned out by "Helping" and who need to understand why they do so. 
beth

Registered: 04/24/06
Posts: 3,040
 #2 
Thanks, Lucette, that sounds like an interesting book.

I'm finally understanding more and more that we can't help others if we don't
take good care of ourselves first. Otherwise, eventually there is little left to give.

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Beth
Char

Registered: 03/25/04
Posts: 928
 #3 
Hi Lu:

I wanted to say Hello
and send you a hug this day, big one!

just here quickly

and tks for your post
and book suggestion


Char ))


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Hi everyone..

What a great forum.

THE TIME IS NOW!!!
raven

Registered: 10/15/07
Posts: 605
 #4 
lucette you always have such words of wisdom i look up to you much peace
vanessaxxx
mdlove

Registered: 03/13/04
Posts: 4,214
 #5 
it is all about saying NO
when you do not want to do something

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bernie siegel
rvandenbosch

Registered: 03/10/04
Posts: 4,169
 #6 

Yes.  After my first cancer diagnosis and treatment, I realized that I was the typical "caregiver" type of person that never said "No." to anyone.  If I was honest with myself, many of the times that I was asked to do something, I resented it because I never had a day off and soon was exhausted by being the "healer" and "protector" of everyone.  I had to get cancer to listen to the message my body was sending me.  Don't be stupid like I was.  Take care of yourself first so you are strong enough to help others.  You are not personally responsible to "take care of the world!"  Bernie taught me this and I am forever grateful.  ILY Bern.


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Wishing you love & peace,

Ruth
MargaretS

Registered: 03/13/04
Posts: 1,413
 #7 
It took me forever to learn to say no. Keep reminding us, since we sometimes slip back into old habits.

It's important that we take care of ourselves, even if it pisses off someone.

Hugs and Love to all. Prayers said for each of you.

M


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" I can do all things through Christ, Who strengthens me. " Philippians 4:13

Step forward in Faith
hs1

Registered: 07/08/10
Posts: 46
 #8 
Oh dear...I think I  should read this book.

Helenxx
Char

Registered: 03/25/04
Posts: 928
 #9 


Hi Lu

and all:

Yes, you have to be assertive
and set your boundaries

I have said NO
to some people and think
they could not believe it

They (some) get pushy and wont take
NO, but sorry that's the way it
goes


Char



__________________
Hi everyone..

What a great forum.

THE TIME IS NOW!!!
lucette

Registered: 05/24/08
Posts: 1,700
 #10 

It is my belief that saying "NO" needs to come from a loving heart that has discerned your situation.  It need never be an excuse for self-righteous and selfishness.  Unfortuntely I have seen people use the often quoted "take care of yourself first" to live a very selfish life, to ignore family responsibilities and to justify many things they do which may be hurtful to others.  Sometimes it is our own need (ego, attention-seeking, lack of good judgement etc.) that makes us take on too much in life and these issues can be addressed within ourselves - that is, what do we take on too much.  Sometimes, it can be a person's feeling of superiority that causes them to cut off from family and say "No" because they feel they have to take care of themselves first.  There is mystery in life and there are times when the difficulties are the times of much soul growth.  However, I think some people can say "No" because they fear the difficulties, or they do not feel they will get the attention they want ... in this great experience of life, saying "No" is important, but in my opinion it must be done from a loving heart with good discernment, and need not erode the courage to tackle the difficulties of life, or the loving, selfless service of others. There is such a "Me-ness" these days that is concerning.  Blessings to all as you discern when and how to say "No", and when you need to take care of yourself first.

mdlove

Registered: 03/13/04
Posts: 4,214
 #11 
you follow your heart
and your gut
not your head

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bernie siegel
Betty

Registered: 03/24/09
Posts: 1,680
 #12 
Saying "no" can be done in a kind way.  When we are ill and not able to do certain things, it can harm our physical and emotional well-being to push ourselves to do things that we could do before.  

I believe that had I taken more time to rest and to take better care of myself instead of pushing myself hard to please everyone else, I might not have succumbed to this dis-ease.  I am speaking for myself and not for anyone else.  In my case, saying "no" in a kind and loving way has brought me more compassion from my loved ones, and they understand my need to have more quiet time and rest.

I've been able to say "no" without using the word, "no."  

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Live your Bliss
Betty
lucette

Registered: 05/24/08
Posts: 1,700
 #13 
It is easy to say "no" (whatever way you say it) to our loved ones because they want the best for us.  They may even urge us to have time for ourselves.  I personally think the need to "please everyone" is more about ourselves than the other person.  It may come from a need in us to be thought well of, a lack of an inner Self which means we want to do only what others want us to do, a way of boosting our own egos etc. 

Yes, I agree "follow your heart" and "your gut", but first of all make sure your heart is not hardened, and your gut is not giving messages of "fear", but rather of a need to put yourself first.  Some people don't know how to discern what is the truth of their heart because the concepts of the head control the heart and they don't always recognize this.  All for the learning...
Betty

Registered: 03/24/09
Posts: 1,680
 #14 
Lucette, each person is an individual.  In my case, boosting my ego was the farthest thing from my imagination when I tried to please others.  This was the way that I was taught to show my love (self-sacrifice.)  I had to learn to take care of my own needs first and not to feel guilty about doing it.
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Live your Bliss
Betty
lucette

Registered: 05/24/08
Posts: 1,700
 #15 
Yes Betty, being all different most of us would fall into the "etc" part of my sentence.  Insight and awareness are two wonderful aspects of growing, and we don't need to defend ourselves - only become aware and learn and be grateful for the experience.

Interesting to me is that "self-sacrifice" and self-forgetfulness are seen as important qualities/virtues to acquire in some religions and spirituality.
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