Saturday, December 9, 2017

“Most of my life has been spent trying to shrink myself. Trying to become smaller. Quieter. Less sensitive. Less opinionated. Less needy. Because I didn’t want to be a burden. I didn’t want to be too much or push people away. I wanted people to like me. I wanted to be cared for and valued. I wanted to be wanted. So for years, I sacrificed myself for the sake of making other people happy. And for years, I suffered. But I am tired of suffering, and I’m done shrinking. It’s not my job to change who I am in order to become someone else’s idea of a worthwhile human being. I am worthwhile. Not because other people think I am, but because I exist, and therefore I matter. My voice matters. And with or without anyone’s permission or approval, I will continue to be who I am and speak my truth.  Even if it makes people angry. Even if it makes them uncomfortable. Even if they choose to leave. I refuse to shrink. I choose to take up space. I choose to honor my feelings. I choose to give myself permission to get my needs met.” ~~Daniell Koepke
Practicing Statement #12 on a daily basis provides a pathway for increasing feelings of value and self-esteem. Under the influence, feelings of worth plummeted which made it easy to shrink myself to fit into someone else’s definition of who I was. At one point, I felt nonexistent; so much depended on something outside of myself.

Sobriety is the beginning of creating a flourishing framework of self. Feeling a sense of accomplishment from just one hour or one day of sobriety felt motivating, which in turn increased feelings of worth and identity. I began uncovering myself which felt oddly satisfying and exciting. Fighting for myself instead of against, feelings of competency emerged.

One beautiful aspect of Statement #12 is that competency is unending; there will be areas to grow into and become. Competency is unlimited; what had initially felt difficult in early sobriety can now feel routine and soon current challenges will become past achievements. Thanks to WFS, I embrace my worth; I am a capable, competent, caring and compassionate woman!

Hi 4C Women,
As I read Daniell Koepke's beginning description of how she defined herself, I cringed because that was how I saw myself. As she began to gain self-worth, I breathed a sigh of relief as I related to that transition as well. It was challenging to see myself in such a negative light for so many years and realize I had to do the work to change that. How in the world does one go from hating herself to loving herself all while working on sobriety?  

I thought back to family relationships, teenage crushes and friendships and adult relationships and how these relationships impacted my feelings of competency and self-esteem. Why did I choose certain relationships when they ended up hurting me, reaffirming my low opinion of myself? These were questions that I had to deal with if I was going to start believing in my worth and not depend on others to place a value on me that was filled with judgment. In therapy and sobriety, I delved into these relationships and saw a pattern that answered many of my questions as to why I chose unhealthy relationships as a young adult that carried over to adulthood. Quite an eye opener. I discovered I was trying to recreate history, choosing someone who would ultimately reject me to prove my low opinion of myself was accurate. Then there was the hopeful part of me that hoped the person would love me enough to disprove I was unlovable. Sadly, because of my history, I usually ended up being rejected. Now I believe I am competent, I am lovable and worthy. I am good at seeing the red flags and while I am not in a romantic relationship, I know I would not ignore my internal warning signs.  

It's been expressed that relationships are the biggest challenge in our recovery. As we learn about ourselves, build our self-esteem and self-love, the goal of healthy relationships is the work we do. Are we still triggered by certain relationships? How do we handle those triggers under the added stress of the holidays and raised expectations?  

I think Karen's statement that she is fighting for herself rather than against, is a powerful way to create positive change. As you reflect on the past that created your feelings of unworthiness, do you recognize an unhealthy pattern? If so, do you have a plan to build your self-worth, self-love? Not everyone has a past that created unworthy feelings yet we still have them. It is important to uncover the why and begin the self-love journey. Are you ready to take yours?  I hope so because you are a competent woman and have much to give life!  

4C WFS member
Women for Sobriety, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Your Donations Help Support WFS's Ongoing Services. Thank you!
100% of your donation reaches WFS and contributes to our mission.
Buy or Sell Items on EBay and Help Support Women for Sobriety.
When you shop at, Amazon donates to WFS.
Check out Women for Sobriety's Blog Site.
If you received this from a friend, we welcome you to JOIN our email list.
Copyright © Women for Sobriety, Inc. | All rights reserved | Federal ID # 23-1972763
Women for Sobriety, Inc. | P.O. Box 618Quakertown, PA 18951-0618
About our service provider
Sent by in collaboration with
Trusted Email from Constant Contact - Try it FREE today.
Try it free today

No comments:

Post a Comment