One type of mental energy leak that I want you to start looking for is what I call “loaded words or phrases.”
This is language that you are using that is not serving you and making you feel bad – consciously or unconsciously.
I want to you start paying attention to what you are thinking and what you are saying and if you notice a loaded word or phrase, I want you to take a moment to examine what’s at the root of that language for you? Where did you learn that concept? Whose voice are you now repeating?
An example of a loaded phrase I have heard caregivers use is: “But I want to be a good daughter.” Good daughter. What does that mean to you? Where is that bar set? Who set that bar? Is the definition that you have of “good daughter” something that’s actually attainable for you? What are you worried will happen if you don’t live up to that standard? How does that make you feel?
An example of a loaded word that I have heard many caregivers use is “abandon” as in: “I can’t abandon my mother.” Abandon. I mean that is a heavy word. That word can’t possibly make you feel good because it reeks of judgment – either you worrying about being judged and/or you harshly judging yourself. That word also indicates you are thinking in very all-or-nothing terms. And, because abandoning someone is at the far end of the caregiving spectrum, there is a lot of area between “caring perfectly for your loved one” and “abandoning them.”
Removing these types of loaded words and phrases from your vocabulary and replacing them with thoughts and perspectives that are more in alignment with reality and which give you more space and more grace, will make you feel better and help you retain more energy.
Thank you for spending this time with me – and thank you for being one of the ones who care.
Details about my group coaching program for caregivers are here.