When you are stuck in a story about yourself or others, it may be difficult to discern your current reality.
You may convince yourself of facts that are based on your perception rather than zooming out and understanding the big picture.
You may miss out on what is true, leading to negative thoughts and a bad habit.
Read More: “Don’t Underestimate The Power In Letting Go”
Habits can become a pattern, and soon, you may be living out truths that are no longer factual for you.
This can bury your true self and make a positive change difficult. By developing narratives about yourself as well as others, you may begin to compare, repeat unhealthy behaviors, and promote suffering in your life.
When you let go of old beliefs that no longer serve you; you can give space to new healthy patterns, stop suffering, improve your mental health, and embrace the tools that are already within you.
Letting go of an old habit and narrative can be a challenge because they may have helped you at one time.
However, releasing old stories can help you get a fresh start with healthy habits and a different story.
As part of your new years resolution, you may want to make changes in your life and heal from an old story that you have been telling yourself. You don’t have to wait for a new year to help yourself.
You may be ready to let go of several common stories including:
“I am not good enough”
This is an easy story to stay stuck in because when you aren’t good enough you don’t have to try to get better. If you have already failed yourself, you don’t have to attempt to succeed.
Both failure and success are valuable learning tools. You may want to stay safe through minimal risks, surface-level relationships, and avoiding healthy behaviors that feel like daunting tasks. Instead, tell this story to stay put.
“No one likes me.”
A story like this can be detrimental. Making new friends is a vulnerable act that requires intimacy. If you don’t have a template for what it feels like to be intimate with someone else, not necessarily sexual, you may avoid it all together.
When you keep the story that no one likes you, you don’t have to feel rejection by putting yourself into the world with willingness and vulnerability.
Instead of building intimacy with yourself and others, you can repeat this story to continue the narrative of feeling isolation rather than rejection.
When you do make friends, it can be difficult to discern self-disclosure. You may not feel comfortable sharing your personal story or life experience.
So, you may have to practice boundary setting. Not every friend will be close and sometimes friendships end organically.
This can be uncomfortable, and you are still worth the effort. Humans need connection, so it is helpful to heal from this old narrative.
Read More: “Face Your Fears: Change Your Life”
“If I do everything, I am helping.”
You may be hurting a person or situation by helping with everything. This can lead to enabling and an unhealthy balance of power in a relationship.
It can also lead to more stress for you and others rather than less.
Negative reactions can occur if others feel helpless around you.
Perfectionism can be a lonely place, and discerning whether you would rather be happy or right can be helpful.
When you develop a mentality of your way is the only way, it can lead to resentments and lack of trust.
When you are seeking connection, taking over a situation can lead to failed intimacy.
“I am a victim of every circumstance.”
Martyrdom can be difficult to manage when you have experienced trauma.
If you have been a victim, it is easy to play out this story so that you can feel safe again, especially if you have experienced a negative event in your life. If you are a victim of every circumstance, you may get sympathy and love.
Those responses can help you feel fulfilled in the moment. However, giving yourself authentic empathy can be challenging if you never take a break from the role of victim.
Often, victims can become victimizers when they don’t heal from initial wounds. This can lead to unnecessary suffering. Pain is not a choice. You will experience it throughout your lifetime; however, you have choices when it comes to suffering.
“They have everything.”
This narrative or story is a way to relive the experience of comparison. When you compare yourself with others, it can give you an excuse to stay focused on material goods. Happiness gets equated to external factors, which can be controlled.
Read More: “The Secret To Becoming Gentle With Yourself In The New Year”
Contentment is conditioned through internal peace, so it can be rewarding to allow yourself instant gratification instead. When you let yourself compare, you may get more control over a situation that felt fruitless.
You deserve to have your needs met, and it can feel unfair when others have more than you. When you take a step back and pause, you may realize that no one has everything.
This story is an impossible expectation and a doomed prospect from the start. Instead, tap into the tools within you through mindfulness, meditation, gratitude, and self-love.
Stories and narratives can be helpful when it comes to keeping you safe.
Often, they develop because of a fear-based reaction to an uncomfortable situation.
Rather than staying stuck, you have the option to let go and begin anew. Small changes can help you making lasting progress in the new year.
Setting goals or intentions to lessen one of the stories you tell yourself can help you make a change and develop a new healthy habit.
Sometimes stories are created by past traumatic experiences or hurtful interactions with others. If you are struggling to let go of these or other unhelpful stories, therapy may be helpful.
Written by: Randi Thackeray, MA
Clinically Reviewed and Edited by: Julie Reichenberger, MA, LPC, ACS, ACC