Tag: Empowerment

Trust: The Most Important Ingredient in Any Relationship

Dear Reader,

What do we do when we have experienced a rupture in a relationship that feels beyond repair?

 

What do we do when we feel broken inside?  How can we gain trust after feeling so betrayed?

If you are asking yourself these questions, you are not alone. 

Ruptures and betrayals in relationships are common, yet hurtful to cope with.

In my clinical and professional practice, I have come to learn how difficult it can be to overcome these types of relationship injuries.

According to Dr. Mario Martinez, betrayal is one of the most difficult relationship wounding to recover from.  This notion matters because it helps normalize the complexities and time it may require from healing from such hurt.

To begin the healing process of relationship injuries, betrayals, or ruptures; we must first start by defining trust.

Like Dr. Dan Siegel says, “When we can name it we can tame it.” Naming things can help us by providing us with a tangible roadmap of what might initially felt abstract and impossible.

Hence, what is trust?

To do so, we will use Brene Brown’s definition of trust using acronym BRAVING:

B– stands for boundaries.  We are more likely to trust others who respect and honor our boundaries.  The same is vice versa.  People are more like to trust us when we respect and honor other people’s boundaries.

R– stands for reliability.  We are far more likely to trust someone who is reliable, more like to follow through with what they say.  The same occurs for us.  People will trust us when we follow through with what we say while providing congruent and consistent actions.  This is the connection between what we say and do.

A– stands for accountability.  When there is a rupture, a mistake, or misunderstanding and the individual accepts responsibility versus blaming, deflecting, minimizing, or denying, we are far more likely to trust them.  This applies to us as well.  When we genuinely accept responsibility for the actions, missteps, or errors made on our part, individuals are more like to trust us as well.

V– stands for vault.  This means that whatever is shared in confidence is kept private.  When we share something private to someone and they do not divulge it to others, we are more likely to trust them.  The same occurs if the individual practices respecting other people’s privacy.  When we practice privacy for others, especially things that are sensitive or confidential in nature or when asked to, others are more like to place their trust in us as well.

I– stands for integrity.  We trust individuals who have a sense of integrity, meaning their words, values, and actions are congruent.  We are less likely to trust someone who says one thing but does another action that does not match.  We normally call this dissonance or incongruency which causes discomfort for the self and others.  The same occurs for us.   People are likely to trust us when we practice congruency, as best as possible, with what we say, value, and do.

N– stands for nonjudgment.  This is an important element that applies to criticism.  Feedback can be constructive and helpful; however, like Dr. Julie Gottman explains, criticism can hurt.  When there is open mindedness and compassion (non-judgement), we are more likely to trust individuals.  The same applies to us.  When we practice nonjudgement by being open minded and compassionate to others, individuals are more likely to trust us.

G– stands for generous assumption.  This last concept is a difficult one to apply, yet an important one.  When there is trust in a relationship, instead of assuming the worse in others, the practice is to make the most generous assumption (providing the benefit of the doubt) when we are missing information.  Likewise, when we feel that people assumed the worse in us, it leads to feelings of mistrust and doubt in the relationship.  However, when we feel that we were given the benefit of the doubt, it helps increase levels of trust.

This acronym may not make the feelings of a rupture or betrayal disappear.  However, it can help us understand where and why we experienced hurt in the first place.  This can help us begin exploring, “What was important to me and what was missing in this relationship?”

Finally, trust is a treasure that is so vital in any relationship.  It’s not immediate and it takes time to cultivate.  Yet, it can be hurt in seconds, moments, or over time.  My hope for you is to have tangible information that can help better understand the definition of trust.  Granted, trust is not exclusive to these elements, however, it can help us reflect on the things that are missing or working in any given relationship.

With warmth and kindness,

Jazmine

 

References

Gottman, J. M., & DeClaire, J. (2002). The relationship cure: a five-step guide to strengthening your marriage, family, and friendships. New York: Harmony Books.

Martinez, M. E. (2016). The mindbody code: how to change the beliefs that limit your health, longevity, and success. Sounds True.

Brene Brown (2015) “Anatomy of Trust.” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6442YcvEUH8&list=PLwCIGPNhuP8uQGgsGG3LFvwQiEP73uXn5

Siegel, D. J., & Bryson, T. P. (2012). The Whole-Brain Child : 12 revolutionary strategies to nurture your child’s developing mind. Bantam Books.

Feeling Like an Imposter? The Impact of Imposter Syndrome and How to Cope with It

Feeling Like an Imposter?

The Impact of Imposter Syndrome and How to Cope with It

“I’m not good enough to be here.”

“What am I doing here?”

“Will they notice I don’t belong here and fire me?”

“I’m a fraud. Everyone will know.”

I

f you have these thoughts, chances are that you may be dealing with Imposter Syndrome. This phenomenon includes thoughts and feelings of self-doubt and incompetence that continue despite having background knowledge, experience, and accomplishments important to the position.

A person impacted by this phenomenon won’t believe they earned their success through their own merits and worry that their peers or employers will come to the same realization. Minor errors at work just reinforce this perception of yourself.

Imposter syndrome can impact anyone in any position or profession. Possible causes of Imposter Syndrome include: parental rearing or childhood environment, personality traits, current mental health status, new expectations and responsibilities, institutionalized racism, and gender bias.

Now that there is an understanding of what Imposter Syndrome is, we’re going to break-down the five types of Imposter Syndrome, the impact of Imposter Syndrome, and how to reduce the impact on your life.

The 5 Types of Imposter Syndrome

The Perfectionist

If Imposter Syndrome shows up in this type, the person may focus on how things are done to the point that perfection is expected of themselves in every area of their life. Additionally, they will not acknowledge the hard work they’ve invested and may criticize themselves for any errors, seeing them as failures.

The Natural Genius

The Natural Genius type will appear in people who spend their lives easily picking up new skills and believe new information and processes should be understood easily as well. This relates to Imposter Syndrome when they begin to have difficulty with tasks because they feel that competent people would not have any difficulty with these tasks.

The Soloist/Individualist

In this type of Imposter Syndrome, the person believes that they should be competent enough to not need help from others with tasks. If they are not able to successfully complete those tasks individually, they feel like frauds.

The Expert

This type will be observed in people who believe that they should have all the knowledge they need internally. If they are not able to answer questions or find out they were not aware of certain knowledge, they feel like failures.

The Superhero

The Superhero type often appears in people who connect competence to their capability of succeeding in every role they take on in their lives. Imposter Syndrome comes in if they are unable to successfully fulfill role demands and expectations.

This is merely an introduction to the five types of Imposter Syndrome, and we hope to elaborate on them in a future blog.

The Impact of Imposter Syndrome

            Imposter Syndrome can leave a lasting impact and overbearing burden on a person if they are not able to cope with the phenomenon. Since people are experiencing these thoughts of self-doubt and incompetence, they end up working harder than they usually would and placing higher expectations on themselves – leading to mental health issues and, ironically, poorer work performance. These thoughts of self-doubt and incompetence fuel anxiety, depression, guilt, and stress. The combination of these mental health symptoms then leads to a lack of sleep and inability to focus. If these symptoms are not worked through using effective coping skills, it can lead to other psychological and physiological symptoms.

How to Reduce the Impact of Imposter Syndrome

Sometimes our frequently used coping strategies may not work with certain phenomena, including Imposter Syndrome. There are plenty of ways to work through this self-doubt, including:

  • Discussing your feelings and thoughts with your peers, friends, coworkers, family, and mentors.
    • They may be feeling something similar and can provide insight on how they worked through the experience.
  • Recognizing your experience, knowledge, and competence.
    • It takes a lot of work to get where you are in your position or profession, and you would not have been able to get there by doing nothing.
  • Challenging your self-doubt.
    • It’s important to question whether the facts support the thoughts and feelings you have about yourself.
  • Avoid comparing yourself with others around you.
    • We are all unique in our own ways and comparing ourselves is not an accurate comparison.
  • Seek help if your symptoms worsen.
    • It can be hard to do this on our own and there is nothing wrong with needing help from a therapist, church leader, etc. to help you work through it.

Imposter Syndrome can be a difficult phenomenon to work through, especially when it feels so real and scary. However, it can be worked through if you have the right tools at your disposal. You are competent. You have the experience for the position you’re in. You’ve proved to your peers time and time again how you’re deserving of the role. Now, all you must do is allow yourself to believe it as well.

My hope for you is to see your worth in your role, profession, or position. If you would like more information, please contact our office at: (915) 209-1234.

                        Kindly,

                                 Zoe Olivo, LPC-Associate Supervised by Guillermo A. Castañeda, LPC-S

What if Questions Were the Answer?

 

Dear Reader,

 

As a counselor and a teacher, I know the value and importance of asking the right type of questions.  In essence, being intentional has value.  The questions we ask ourselves, often, guide our focus, critical thinking and problem solving.

 

I have learned that during difficult times, we have an inclination to shift to survival mode, which is typically appropriate and adaptive depending on circumstances and even past experiences.  This survival lens may influence our perspective and mindset.

 

It is important to keep in mind that if we have experienced any form of trauma, then there are additional layers that need to be considered besides shifting our mindset.  In fact, some of those layers include feeling safe, type of support system, and resources, among many more.

 

My intention is to invite a possible way of reframing some of our internal dialogue in spite of adversity.  The purpose of this is to help us change our perspective and view things in a way that may be more helpful than unhelpful.

 

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