My sister and I agree that there were many things my parents told us growing up that we didn’t agree with or felt was hypocritical of them. Things like “wait until marriage to have sex” without acknowledging that neither of them did that…at all. Or “College is the best time of your life”. Meanwhile both my sister and I whilst in college and disagreed strongly. Three years out of college, I can now see why they said this, though I still don’t totally agree. The lie that was specific to me was “You’re lazy”
My "oh no you didn't" face
Now, before I elaborate on why I’ve written a whole blog post on this one lie, let me note that I don’t believe my parents were ever trying to straight up lie to my sister and I. I don’t believe they meant any harm, I truly believe they meant well. Parenting is a mixture of taking advice, doing what your parents did to you and watching others around you combined with a whole lot of winging it. Everyone has a different style; all parents make mistakes and as a family we learn as we go.
My lie, the one that I have subconsciously combated for years is “You’re lazy”. Again, I don’t believe my parents meant to ingrain this belief in my mind or even knew it was possible, but they did. I can remember very vividly being called lazy OFTEN. Looking back, I can see it was truly a mix of me simply being a child, learning responsibility and my ADD which no one at the time knew I had…and to be honest, I’m still not sure that my parents know this. My mom would put things on the staircase for me to pick up on the way up to my room and I just wouldn’t see it. No joke. I would not see the pile of things meant for me right by my feet. This, to them translated as me simply being lazy. To them I was ignoring my tasks and things when in all reality I was incredibly scattered in my mind.
To combat this, without even knowing that I was pushing up again this lie, I piled EVERYTHING onto my plate in from elementary when I first ran for class representative all the way to college. While at University, I was on two executive boards for two different groups on campus, worked three jobs, went to school full time, was a Resident Assistant, volunteered for my church and trying to make a long distance relationship work. Without knowing it, I was fighting against a lie I’d been told my entire life. Now that I was out of the house, I would prove it to them that I wasn’t lazy, that I was smart and capable and hard working.
I kid you not guys, I’m just realizing all of this now. As a coach, I am always learning, revealing things to myself and take self-care seriously in an effort to not only live the life that I preach to my clients but to also show up as the best person that I can – and only getting better.
I was in the shower, thinking about hearing “you’re lazy” my whole life and the implications of it. In my post grad life I have tried juggling a number of jobs, have been pushing myself again and again to make more money (based on another lie given to me by my father that only the engineers, lawyers and Doctors of the world make money) and ultimately running myself ragged trying to please and pile on and show my parents and the world that I’m NOT LAZY.
It got me thinking about other things that are said to me regularly, by anyone, and Tyler’s “You’re so sweet” immediately popped into my mind. Tyler tells me this, that I am sweet, countless times throughout the day. Even when I’m not actually being that sweet. Out of some slight paranoia, and knowing that he got double degrees in psychology & philosophy, a I asked him If he’d been saying this to me intentionally to maybe change my behavior subconsciously. He laughed and told me no. He said that he really believed I was sweet.
I tell you all of this to hopefully help you wake up to some of the lies that you have been told. I know they say babies are sponges, but throughout our entire lives this remains true. We truly take in what people say/do and how they act around us, and the more it happens the more ingrained these things become. Take a look at your patterns and see if you can identify the root.
Because of my recent identification that all of these years I have been feeling the need to please and pile on in order to not appear lazy to my parents or the world, I am now in the process of looking at my life and seeing what I can either get rid of or loosen my grip on; understanding that piling on work is a burden no one else had put onto me, but me! -I’m honing in on what is most important and in line with my personal mission statement. I’m doing a lot of unlearning and rebuilding. It’s not always apparent what the next step is, but when I open myself up to what the Universe wants to teach me, I feel myself being guided, one unlearning at a time.
Make a positive “I am” list and hang it somewhere you can look at it daily. Remind yourself daily what God has blessed you with and keep moving in the direction of your dreams. No lies allowed.
I am friendly. I am caring. I am flexible (mentally and physically). I am reliable. I am a good listener. I am strong minded. I am faithful. I am hard working. I am capable.