When hopping off the “special” train where do we stop next?
A few days ago we dove into the impact of seeking external validation in our romantic relationships. There is an additional aspect of the ego’s desire to run the show in our romantic relationships I like to call “THE PEDESTAL”. Part of seeking external validation is rooted in an unconscious placement of others, in this case our romantic partners on imaginary higher levels. This is a learned behaviour and done enough times becomes an unconscious addiction and behavioural pattern. When we seek admiration or validation from others in any way shape or form we have metaphorically put that person on a pedestal.
Giving up the addiction to the Pedestal.
The first step of making this radical shift will be giving up putting people, situations, organizations and circumstances on a pedestal. This is one of the most challenging things to shift when it comes to love relationships. When we first meet someone we are so present to the beauty and incredibleness of their being. Often then we place this person on a pedestal and unconsciously tell ourselves we aren’t as good. Which the ego could make mean we aren’t worthy of their love because we are different, lower-not as good. This belief, which we reinforce through the use of the pedestal, becomes the root of many many relationship breakdowns.
Can disfunction serve a positive function?
Yes, yes it can. In fact if we are open enough we will see that every disfunction (ego/fear based action or thought) serves to teach us incredible lessons and leads us to a deeper more profound experience of ourselves, of each other and the world around us. Here is what I’ve learned:
When we seek love outside of ourselves it is a clear indication we have temporarily forgotten our greatness. We have bought into the belief and illusion of fear, ego and separation. What is funny is even in our perceived separation we are still united since every single human being experiences these moments of seeking external approval and validation some where, some how, along their path. In my experience it is a necessary part of the journey.
Every time I have relentlessly pursued this type of validation through my partners it has inevitably failed. No human can live up to the unrealistic and unreal projections of our own minds (which we often keep secret). Human beings are flawed and incredibly beautiful inside those flaws. When we place people on a pedestal we say to ourselves they are perfect in every way shape or form and make no room for their humanness. When their flaws or humanness begins to surface it causes great challenge as it illustrates the inaccuracy of the ego’s perception of perfection in another. Ultimately this leads to more ego-ic eruptions and in many cases in my experience a complete break of the relationship.
Through repeated experience of external validation seeking, we are taught that no amount of external approval or validation will ever leave us feeling truly full, fulfilled and in bliss. Every person experiences this differently. Some of us seek approval in love, some in our body image, some in our career, some in our spirituality, some in our families. The possibilities are abundant. The key here is to understand we all do it. There is nothing wrong with you for experiencing the need or desire to have an outside source confirm your worth however, it does illustrate an opportunity for growth and delicious expansion.
Understand why it doesn’t work
The reason why external validation isn’t a long term solution is because often it is incongruent and in conflict with the internal dominant beliefs we hold about ourselves, our worth and our value. Thus when someone says “I love you, you are an incredible partner and the most amazing person I have ever been with” we are actually incapable of ‘hearing’ it. The dominant voice inside will diminish, discredit or invalidate the statement simply because it isn’t congruent with your internal reality. Thus we push away any evidence about how lovely we actually are, in order to continue running the functions of the ego. We correct this pattern by learning to love ourselves more, little by little.
How to use this to your advantage in life and in relationships
At times understanding how others see, view and perceive us is actually healthy. We can learn a lot about who we actually are and how we show up if we allow this function to serve us. Meaning we must get really good at accepting peoples feedback. The only way external validation can be a contribution to our experience is when we do the inner work to calibrate our belief about our worth and value to the positive feedback others give us. In simple terms we must learn to accept ourselves, train ourselves to hear what others are actually saying (not our ego filtered perception) and how to allow and receive. Our self esteem must be elevated.
Set Yourself Free
What you see in others exists in you too. This is the key to freedom from this disempowering trap of the ego-pedestal. The people we put on pedestals are just the same as us inside. A magical fun fact: If you are able to identify aspects you admire and value in other people, you have to come to terms with the fact that those exact same qualities and aspects reside within you. If they didn’t you wouldn’t be able to identify them in another.
To understand all we see and observe in others is a direct mirror of our inner worlds and an access point to understanding who we are, is incredibly empowering. This means everything you love and admire about someone else is actually a reflection of the things you love about yourself but have suppressed or refused to recognize. The divide between you and them dissolves when you come to the awareness that everything you see in them is in you too. This becomes a huge access point to learning and honouring your worth and value.
You know that refection I invited you to do the other day? The one where you took a look at in what ways you make others special aka put them on a pedestal? Now take a look at all the qualities that you determined qualified them in the special zone. Guess what lovers? You now get to recognize and own that all of the qualities you admire about them all reside within you too. Over the next few days spend some time in reflection with yourself. Ponder and seek to find where these qualities exist within and when you find them allow them to stay. Doing so is an exercise in building your self esteem, self worth and self love!
Radical Self Love to the MAX!!!