Editor’s note: Liberty Forrest, author of several self-help books and a certified Law of Attraction Life Coach, advises that it’s always important to honour, respect and love yourself, despite what you’ve endured from the sociopath. Read more about Liberty.
By Liberty Forrest
My last article, After the Sociopath, Honor Your Perfect Spirit, was about the ways in which you might be hurting yourself and neglecting your Spirit. Although it isn’t essential, you might want to have a peek at that post before reading this one, as they fit together rather well.
I ended it with these words: “Please. Be gentle with yourself. Be kind to yourself. Honour, respect and love yourself. It is what you deserve as the divine and perfect Spirit that you are.”
Today, I’d like you to take a few moments and look at those words. Sure, they sound like great ideas, but if you’re reeling from the damage caused by a sociopath, you might have trouble taking them to heart.
Or you might take a quick scan and think, “Yeah, I do all that stuff,” or “I know, I know, I’ve heard it before and I know I should,” or “sometimes I do”… but whatever you’re thinking, please bear with me for a few moments and let’s take a closer look at those words.
“Be gentle with yourself.”
What does that mean? More specifically, what does that mean to you? I can’t answer that for you, of course, because I’m not you. But what I hope it means, at the very least, is that you don’t place unreasonable demands and expectations on yourself, and especially if they are the result of a sociopath’s behaviour toward you.
I hope you don’t beat yourself up for things that are not your responsibility, or for things that you cannot change or control, which are just a couple more ways that a sociopath enjoys causing damage.
I hope you’re not eating guilt by the plateful, and washing it down with pitchers of shame, especially as you are always doing the best you can do in whatever circumstances exist at any given moment — although no doubt a sociopath will do everything to ensure that you believe you’ve made no effort at all. They’ll also be the first in line to make sure you believe you deserve all that guilt and shame. They’re wrong.
I hope it means that on days when you’re feeling emotionally battered and bruised, you wrap yourself up in cotton wool, protecting and removing yourself from situations which will only make things worse. Yep, you know where I’m going with that one, too.
“Be kind to yourself.”
What does this mean to you? Are you kind to yourself? If so, how? I’m asking you to think about it because sometimes we assume that we’re treating ourselves well, but in reality, we are not doing as good a job as we thought.
And if not, why not? Please do reflect on these questions for a moment and answer before you carry on reading.
There is an endless list of ways in which you could be kind to yourself, but the most important idea I want to get across is not “how” you do it, just that you do it. Treat yourself to something special, which doesn’t have to involve spending money (although it can). It can just mean turning off the phones and watching your favourite show while having a yummy cuppa or glassa something.
And if you’re counting calories, like so many people are, it might just mean saying to heck with it now and then and having that “forbidden delight” that would give you a little pleasure.
It can mean having some compassion for yourself, especially when you’re tired or feeling defeated. It can mean seeing yourself as a dejected little kid who could use an arm around his/her shoulders, and telling that little kid that it’s gonna be okay, or “you can do it,” or whatever other reassuring words you might need to hear. It can mean writing or saying affirmations to yourself, giving yourself positive messages each day, nurturing yourself as though you are parenting the little child inside you and wanting that child to feel special and to thrive.
This is especially important after sociopaths have left you feeling confused, worthless, insecure and doubting that you have the remotest chance of being even a little bit successful, because according to them, you have no skills or talents at all.
“Honour, respect, and love yourself.”
On the surface, that might not sound like a tall order. But it is, if you’re going to do each of these and do them well.
In a perfect world, we would all live this way naturally. Unfortunately, because of what we learn from various life experiences and especially at the hands of sociopaths, the resulting damage can leave us behaving dishonourably, disrespectfully and unlovingly toward ourselves — and toward others, which is a double whammy, as it is just one more way we’re doing it to ourselves, too.
Once again, I would ask you to think about those words: “Honour, respect and love yourself.” Contemplate what they mean to you. I’m sure I could write an entire book on this subject.
These words should mean that you listen to yourself, to what you need, and to how you feel. They do not mean that you should always get your way. But they do mean that you should not compromise yourself or your values, especially if you are being coaxed or coerced by someone else. You should not be forced into situations that undermine your morals.
These words should mean that you are at least aware of your needs and feelings, and that you give them equal time and consideration when you’re dealing with those of someone else. They should mean that you mind your boundaries, which means knowing very well what is your responsibility and what is not. And they should mean that you are assertive and that you stand up for yourself when necessary. Sociopaths have no clue about any of this, although they can act like they do — but only if it serves as a way to get what they want.
These words should mean that you understand your value, your worth as the pure and perfect Spirit that you are, and that you behave in alignment with that knowledge to the best of your ability.
If you hold this vision for yourself and keep it uppermost in your mind, if you honour, respect, and love yourself, you will find strength and guidance that will help to carry you forward on your journey. And the more you are able to stand firmly on the foundation of these words, you cannot be fodder for another sociopath.
This article was originally published at LibertyForrest.com. Reprinted with permission from the author.