Autonomy is a basic, fundamental psychological CHOICE, rather than feeling pressured or controlled to act. In today’s conversation on “The Hallways of Home,” Janell speaks to the great need to have healthy, autonomous relationships in our lives.
The Path to Healthy Autonomy
Have you ever felt like a puppet or marionette connected to 100 strings–those strings being the voices of others, the pull of peer pressure, the controlling nature of someone, or the constricts of legalistic systems?
I can definitely answer YES to that question and at age 60, I finally know WHY.
I am an Enneagram 2, Social Sub type, meaning when I am unhealthy or living out of my “personality” and not my “essence,” “I want to be liked by those in need, by important people, and by those who are important to me; I attempt to feel worthy and valued by offering gifts, attention, resources, and advice to others; and I lose connection with what I truly want and deeply need.”
When I am healthy and living from my “essence,” or “God-breathed identity,” as we say in our Stronger Every Day community, I want to “feel a deep and firm sense of self-worth that is not dependent on how others respond.”
Somewhere along the oft-unhealthy path of my personal development. I got lost. If I had to guess, I’d say it was somewhere around middle school. Those glorious years where awkward takes over, puberty hits, and the prefrontal cortex is yet fully mature, causing our actions to be sometimes immature and illogical.
The prefrontal cortex sits just behind the forehead. It is particularly interesting to scientists because it acts as the CEO of the brain, controlling planning, working memory, organization, and modulating mood. As the prefrontal cortex matures, teenagers can reason better, develop more control over impulses and make judgments better. In fact, this part of the brain has been dubbed ‘the area of sober second thought.'”Frontline Producer, Sarah Spinks
Sadly, I was lost for quite some time. I didn’t necessarily look lost, because I was really good at “appearances” and “imaging” and “hiding behind well-coiffed facades,” but I was lost, emotionally and psychologically.
The Power of Healthy Autonomy
Thankfully, and with much gratitude to a loving God, I am no longer lost. Nor am I a puppet connected to a 100 strings. Instead:
- I am securely attached to both God and self.
- I am whole and fully embodied.
- I am well-acquainted with my voice, which to me means, “my value, worth, and dignity.”
- I experience (most of the time, still a work in progress) healthy autonomy in all of my relationships–able to say what I need and desire.
- I accept my limitations.
- I love the good, the bad, and the ugly of my nature because I accept my humanity.
- I embrace and practice mindful self-compassion on a daily basis.
That, my dear community of heartlifters, is nothing short of a miracle.
A miracle available to EACH ONE OF YOU!
More Valuable Resources for Your Healing Journey
- Unlocking Us: Brene Brown interviews Chris Heuertz on his new book, “The Enneagram of Belonging.”
- Mindful Silence: A Video Teaching with Phileena Heuertz, author of “Mindful Silence: The Heart of Christian Contemplation.”
- Speak Healing Words Podcast with Janell: Overflow of rich teaching and inspiration on emotional health and wellness.