Self-betrayal to Self-loyalty: A Foothold to Freedom.
I used to think that we all thought pretty much the same, had the same general insecurities and defense mechanisms, and struggled with more or less the same issues of self-confidence or self-esteem.
I thought that we were wired the same, and that there wasn’t much that could be done to change it, despite striving to and knowing ways that I wanted to be different myself. I know on some level some of this is indeed the case.
But my view on this changed, seven years ago, when I suddenly started a big process and journey of awakening, beginning with a load of things from the past surfacing into my consciousness from deep within me to be talked about and, what I didn’t realize then, healed. It was like a volcano was erupting from inside of me. I couldn’t understand why things from the past were suddenly at the front of my mind.
One of these topics was my experience of being bullied at school, from around year two or three to year nine. I spoke about it to my boyfriend at the time and, in doing so, I realized the ways in which this continued to affect me in my present life.
During my bullying days, I was excluded, talked about, left out, made fun of, ganged up on, was subject to name-calling and being laughed at, and once was hit in the face. All of the things that I was insecure about from my body or looks, to the way I behaved, were magnified and then said out loud and laughed at, in front of whole classes of children, who joined in.
Not one friend, understandably but also painfully, had the courage to stand by my side in support, but betrayed me instead by standing beside the alpha female at the root of most of the attacks. I spent a lot of time alone, was constantly rejected, often dreaded going to school, and started to deeply ingrain more and more beliefs that there were many things wrong with me.
I spent more time reading and writing alone. I developed a deeper relationship with my cuddly toy hedgehog mascot who was always loyal. I dreamed of butterflies, transformation and freedom.
When I spoke about this experience of being bullied years and years later, as all of these traumas were coming up to be attended to, I finally saw and admitted out loud that I still always felt insecure leaving a room if some of my friends would still remain in it, in case they would talk about me.
I revealed that I would keep in contact with friends more regularly than I naturally would to check in if they had spoken to any of my other friends, to make sure that they weren’t convening without or about me or leaving me out in some way. I saw that I never revealed my fullest self to anyone as I was afraid that it would not be accepted.
In admitting all of this — mostly out loud — to someone else, I suddenly saw, especially with outsider insight, that I had created all of my current behaviors which were in fact defense mechanisms in response to my old problems. And I realized that, surely, this meant that I could also change them now, if they no longer served me.
I awoke to find myself living a life based on my conditioning and experiences that had caused me to contract and protect myself, rather than living a freer one that I had chosen to create. I was living a life in which I betrayed myself on many levels in order to be accepted, in the same way that I had been betrayed by others.
This was such a simple but such a profound insight for me. And this was the conscious beginning of my quest for Wild Magical Freedom (owning my past to free my future) and journey of transformation and alchemy.
I used this experience of being bullied as a foothold on the climb towards my own freedom. Due to this and many other deeper reasons, I started having counselling and being witnessed and honored for my painful experiences and traumas so that my shadow of limiting beliefs could be excavated, embraced and transformed.
Right now, I am in a process of surrendering as many remaining limiting beliefs as I can to be alchemized to positive, life-affirming ones, and today I am focusing on surrendering betrayal, which I experienced in this bullying trauma, from an early age.
I have betrayed myself for others so many times in my life since. And it has always left me feeling more disconnected with myself and also with others. Who even am I? I have ended up wondering, so how can anyone else get to know who I really am?
The true antidote to self-betrayal is self-loyalty, which can then be reflected on the outside.
I am much more self-loyal now, but I want to surrender and alchemize all of the remaining self-betrayal that I practice into self-loyalty instead.
I choose to surrender holding myself back in relationships for fear of not being approved, chosen or accepted, or negating my needs in work scenarios to gain the approval of my employer. In the end, this never solves anything, and only really creates greater conflict in the long run — within and without.
We can’t hold ourselves back forever, and we only attract something which is not aligned with our truest self if we have not been expressing from this place. Anger can also arise from within when we have not upheld our boundaries and compromised our needs, which never go away, and so we end up having to deal with it in often a more difficult way at a later date.
I surrender rushing to forgive others before I am ready, giving people more chances than what I truly feel able inside, and drowning out my intuition to give more than my available or appropriate supply of benefit of the doubt.
I surrender my self-doubt which prevents me from being loyal to the gifts that I hold within and bringing them to beautiful fruition in the world.
I surrender laughing at a joke that I just don’t find funny. I surrender keeping quiet to keep the peace when I need to speak out instead. I surrender holding back my truth in case it rocks the boat. I surrender not expressing what is in my heart for fear that it might not be well-received.
Here’s to telling our truths with self-loyalty, spoken non-violently with integrity, at all costs.
Louisa Lamorna Phillips is a Freedom Writer at Wild Magical Freedom, and shares excavated treasures and adventures throughout her quest to live her own Wild Magical Freedom, here and now. She offers resources, tools, coaching, courses, classes, workshops, Yoga, shamanic healing and retreats to empower people to own their past and free their future… to be their present. Follow Wild Magical Freedom on Facebook and Instagram.