A lot of people I know who are in recovery – from an eating disorder, depression or any kind of addication – are really good at giving advice (myself included). I’ve noticed we have this amazing ability to deflect from our own problems by asking each other about theirs – taking care of our friends instead of ourselves, and offering advice that we completely ignore in our own lives. It’s this weird kind of merry-go-round that is very hard to get off because it’s
almost expected in these groups of people that it will happen…
I have a theory as to why (it’s not very profound) – it’s because it’s to hard to deal with our own personal problems. Weird, I know. But at least for me, and my group of friends, it is much easier to take on someone else’s pain for a while than dealing with your own. There is a catch, though – we get too tired from carrying too much and holding too much in. Our disorders worsen, and recovery becomes near impossible because we’re not dealing with the issues at hand.
I find it’s so, so easy to just ignore my own issues and try to fix everyone else’s. Confrontation is too hard, to scary. I worried that I’m not going to like who I find under all the layers (or worse still – that I won’t recognise myself). I concerned that the people who love me won’t love me when my issues (and theirs) are brought forward. But ignoring the harder stuff is not recovery. Pretending the problems don’t exist will not mean that they will go away – they will, in fact, get worse.
I’m not too sure where I’m going to go from here. If there is one thing I do know it’s this: I should start listening to my own advice & the wisdom of my friends and family. For the most part, it’s pretty good.
I need to start wanting for myself the life I so dearly wish for my loved ones.
Do you heed your own advice (or the advice other’s give)? Or are you much better at giving?