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18 life lessons from a helper (recovering rescuer-enabler) type

After spending most of my life helping others, and often (in the past) to my detriment, I thought I’d share some learnings that I wish someone had shared with me.
 
  1. PEOPLE CAN CHANGE, BUT WE CAN’T CHANGE THEM
 
As a helper type it’s so natural to want to dive in and help people we see in need, especially those closest to us.
 
We do this because we believe everyone has the capacity to change; over time, we realise not everyone wants to do the work to change and this can build up resentment energy for us.
 
Accept what is, and what will be. People only change when they’re ready. Just keep showing up by being an example of positive change and working on yourself.
 

2. IT’S ALL ABOUT SELF LOVE

 
One of the reasons we end up giving to our detriment is because we’re trying to get our self worth from helping others.
 
Often helper types and empaths attract narcissists who’ll only serve to damage our self worth further.
 
When we can learn to love ourselves and fill our own cup first, we don’t need to meet our needs by helping others.
 

3. WE TEACH OTHERS HOW TO TREAT US

 
By not standing up for ourselves, by allowing others to use us, by having shitty boundaries and by not saying no, we teach others that the way they treat us is ok, even when it’s not.

 

4. WE NEED TO ESTABLISH BETTER BOUNDARIES

 
By learning better boundaries for ourselves, we start teaching others that they’re behaviour isn’t ok.
 
We let them know our needs, values and wants and learn to say no.
 
This isn’t easy, but it’s so worth it, and you start attracting better people into your life as a result.
 

5. HOW OTHERS TREAT YOU ISN’T A REFLECTION OF YOUR WORTHINESS

 
It’s a reflection of their own pain, not how worthy you are of love and respect.
 

6. SEE PEOPLE FOR WHO THEY ARE, NOT FOR WHO THEY COULD BE

 
As a helper type I’ve too often stayed in relationships and friendships based on how it used to be or the potential for what it could be, rather than the way it actually is.
 
I totally believe in helping people work towards their potential, the best version of them.
 
But when time and time again they only show you who they are right now, and that person doesn’t treat you with respect, then work from that viewpoint instead of one where you hope they’ll become better one day.
 

7. THEY WON’T STOP USING YOU IF YOU KEEP LETTING THEM

 
Why would anyone be motivated to change their behaviour if you keep enabling it?
 

8. YOU DESERVE BETTER, AND BETTER DOES EXIST

 
Don’t settle for less than you deserve. And if you don’t feel like you deserve to be treated with love and respect, refer back to point 2.
 

9. IF YOU DON’T RESPECT YOURSELF, THEY WON’T EITHER

 
When you love and respect yourself, you’ll only spend time with those who show you respect back.
 

10. DON’T MAKE ASSUMPTIONS

 
We can never assume how someone is feeling or why they feel the way they do. Ask questions and clarify whether your assumption is right before you dive in.
 

11. HOW THEY FEEL ISN’T ALWAYS ABOUT YOU

 
Most of the time, the way people are feeling has nothing to do with us, yet we take it so personally if they don’t feel good around us.
 

12. LET GO OR BE DRAGGED

 
If you hold on to them tightly hoping to be able to help them, they could well drag you down with them.
 
Let go and surrender, trust everything will work out for the best.
 

13. FORGIVE EVERYONE FOR EVERYTHING

 
Forgiveness is one of the most powerful tools in my toolbox; it will help you release crappy feelings like resentment, anger and bitterness and you’ll have more compassion for others.
 
Try my forgiveness freebie here: https://coachcarly.com/freebie/
 

14. INSTEAD OF BECOMING BITTER, BECOME BETTER

 
 
Instead of wasting all that energy, focus your energy on becoming a better person.
 
 

15. FILL UP YOUR OWN CUP

 
How many helpers are giving from an empty cup? It’s not sustainable and leads to burnout.
 
Only give from a full cup.
 

16. IDENTIFY YOUR NEEDS, VALUES AND LOVE LANGUAGE

 
It’s so important to get to know yourself by figuring out your needs, values and your love language.
 
All of these help us realise why there may be conflict in certain areas of our lives.
 

17. IT’S OK TO SHOW VULNERABILITY

 
Being vulnerable isn’t a weakness, it’s a strength.
 
 

18. IT’S OK TO SAY NO

 
 
Stop doing things you don’t want to do out of obligation and “should-ing” yourself.
 
Life’s too short!
 
I’d love to know what you’d add to this list – reply and let me know!
 
Catcha on the flip side,
 
 
 

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