Margaret Paul, Ph.D. is a relationship expert, best-selling author, and co-creator of the powerful Inner Bonding® self-healing process, recommended by actress Lindsay Wagner and singer Alanis Morissette, and was featured on Oprah.
Dr. Paul answered our questions on some ways any person can empower themselves to be emotionally level and healthy in this age of social media narcissism and and self absorbed processing of world news events.
She says, "We are currently being greatly challenged to be emotionally level and healthy in this age of social media narcissism, self-absorbed processing of world news events, and interactions between people in relationships. How can we achieve this? One of the main reasons for getting off balance is self-abandonment. Many people reject and abandon themselves in one or more of four different ways."
The Ways We Abandon Ourselves
1. Judging Yourself
Are you aware of saying any of these things to yourself?
"I'm not good enough."
"I have no value."
"If they really knew me, they wouldn't like me."
"I don't deserve to be loved."
"I'm not important."
"I'm not lovable."
"I'm a failure."
"I'm not okay."
"I'm a loser."
When you judge yourself, you disempower yourself, making yourself feel fearful, anxious, depressed, angry, guilt-ridden and/or shamed. You rob yourself of the power to stay balanced when you judge yourself.
2. Staying Focused in your Head Rather Than Your Heart
"Many of us had much pain as we were growing up – the pain of rejection and of various forms of abuse, the pain of not being loved in the way we needed to be loved. To manage the deep pain of the loneliness, heartbreak and helplessness over not being loved, we learned to vacate our body and stay in our head. Staying in our head enabled us to manage the pain that was too much for us to feel."
"Are you still stuck in your head, ignoring your feelings? Your feelings are an inner guidance system, letting you know when you are caring about yourself and when you are abandoning yourself. When you stay in your head rather than your heart, you miss the information you need to take loving care of yourself."
3. Turning to Addictions
"Our current society offers us many ways to tune out from taking responsibility for our own feelings and needs. From food, drugs and alcohol, to social media, TV, sex, spending and other substance and process addictions – we have a smorgasbord of ways to avoid and distract us. Every time we turn to an addiction to avoid our feelings, we are abandoning ourselves."
4. Making Others Responsible for You
"Do you make others' approval and attention responsible for your self-worth and sense of safety? When you make others responsible for defining your worth, you are abandoning yourself. You are trying to get love rather than learning to love yourself so that you can share your love."
"All of these ways of self-abandonment come from the ego's intent to have control over your feelings, over others and over outcomes. But they create the very problems you are hoping to avoid."
5. Self-Empowerment: Learning to Love and Value Yourself
"Staying centered in the face of social media, news and the level of narcissism currently present in our society calls for you to learn to take responsibility for your own wellbeing. Instead of operating from the intent to protect/avoid/control, you need to shift your intent to learning about loving yourself, which then enables you to share your love with others."
"Relationships flourish when each person learns to take loving care of themselves, filling themselves with love to share with their partner. Self-abandonment is the major cause of relationship failure. How do you learn to love yourself?"