Is your sense of unworthiness keeping you from embracing, communicating, and meeting your emotional needs? Let’s talk.
The original intent of this writing was to discuss the book The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman. It was intended to be part two of my August blog, Journey Back to Loving. While beginning to write, I realized that my deeper intention is to expand on an important concept which is indicated but not addressed in the book. First the mile high overview…
Dr. Chapman begins by talking about keeping the ‘love tank’ full. Honestly, this part of the book did not speak to me. Recommending The Five Love Languages to clients, I often tell them it is okay to skip this part. He also offers ideas about falling in love and how love changes. Then the real meat of the book is the presentation of what he identifies as five love languages. Next, discovering your own language, which is the idea I will expand upon in this blog. He touches upon our inclination to love according to our language rather than that of the other. Finally, he expands the concept of love languages to children and others.
The five languages presented are words of affirmation, quality time, receiving gifts, acts of service, and physical touch. Remember last blog, the ‘taking the trash out’ issue? It has nothing to do with trash, it has to do with acts of service. “Why do I have to ask him over and over again to take out the trash?” is a substitute for the real question “Doesn’t he know my love language?” The answer is no, he does not. He told you he loved you when he held your hand while watching television. Don’t you know his love language…physical touch?
There are quizzes and profiles which can be taken online to help us determine our love language or our emotional needs. However, if we spend mindful time with ourselves learning to understand our emotions and the resulting reactions, we will discover our real emotional needs. Awareness of our emotional needs will bring us to awareness of our love language. It will help us understand what actions cause us to feel loved.
Now the road block and the real reason behind my blog. Once we discover our needs it is imperative that we acknowledge, embrace and share them. This requires a healthy sense of entitlement. To many, this last sentence is an oxymoron. How can entitlement, which is widely frowned upon, be healthy? We must be careful not to confuse entitlement with selfishness. Googling entitlement the following definition pops up “the belief that one inherently deserves of privileges or special treatment.” To the codependent parts of us, this is like nails on a chalkboard. There is a collective sense of unworthiness which reminds us we do not deserve special treatment. Somehow we have the idea that it is unacceptable to have needs, much less communicate them.
While this lack of worthiness may be deeply ingrained, it has no business being part of us. We DO deserve to give and receive the privilege and special treatment which are part of loving and being loved. The key is to determine when we bought into our lack of value and to work forward from that time…to work toward realizing our worth. Only then can our needs be accepted as valid and communicated as such.