Archive for June, 2009

DOWNSIZED? LET GO? FIRED? LAID OFF? WHAT NEXT?

June 19, 2009

 

\WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR YOU, FOR YOUR SELF-ESTEEM, FOR YOUR FEELINGS OF SELF-WORTH, FOR YOUR RELATIONSHIPS, FOR YOUR FAMILY?

 

There are all kinds of euphemisms bosses use to let you know that you are now unemployed–and they all mean that you are now unemployed.  When you hear those words, many different thoughts and feelings go through you.  What’s going to happen to your family?  How are you going to pay your mortgage or rent?  Fear, anger, rage and pain may all be part of what you are feeling.  Are you worth anything without an income?   You may feel like striking out at someone or something.  In addition, you may feel as though you are losing a different family because you have been working with these people for a very long time. Your options may be very limited.  There is no big severance package;  you have been living almost from paycheck to paycheck.  What next?  How are you going to handle all of this? 

 

In addition to everything mentioned above, there is also the issue of grieving.  Grieving is not a process that we go through only because we have lost someone or something close to us to death.  We also grieve the loss of a relationship, of a home,  of employment, of certainty about our futures and many other things which we hold dear.

 

When mourning our losses, we go through several stages and some of you may be going through them as a result of now being unemployed.  There is no time limit of going through these stages, and you will not go through them in a straight line from one to the other.  You may, and probably will, go from one stage to another more than once.  These stages are:

*Denial:  you can’t believe that this is happening

*Anger:  at everyone including yourself and no one 

*Bargaining:  you promise to be good so this won’t happen

*Depression:  anger turned in on yourself

*Acceptance:  of what happened and moving on

 

These are powerful feelings and can be difficult to deal with.  I can help and am available.  Please feel free to call me at 415-474-6707 to discuss any of this.  

 

Take care.

Zora

 

 

POWER: IS SOMEONE ALWAYS UP AND SOMEONE ALWAYS DOWN IN YOUR RELATIONSHIP?

June 10, 2009

Healthy relationships are dynamic and flowing.  Issues and problems arise, get discussed, resolved, ebb, and rise again.  Money, sex and power are among the most tumultuous concerns.  Money and sex are generally easily understood, although not necessarily easily resolved.  Power, on the other hand, is a complicated and complex concept.  It is often confused with the issue of control–who is dominant and who is submissive?  Do I have to dominate someone else or something else in order to feel powerful?  Not so surprisingly, the answer is “NO”.  As a matter of fact, it is when I feel powerless that I have the need to control someone or something else.  A batterer is a good example of someone who feels powerless and, thus needs to control someone else.  Let me be clear–this in no way excuses his actions. Let me explain.

There are a number of ways in which to look at power, for instance on two levels, external power and internal power.  External power can be related to political and economic power.  It is more apt to be coercive.  Internal power, on the other hand, is non-coercive and non-dictatorial.  It might also be called psychological power.  The individual has a sense of inner strength and potency.  There is no need to control anyone or anything else.  For whatever reasons, most of us do not develop this sense of internal power as we grow up.

In an intimate relationship, a power struggle may ensue in order to compensate for feelings of internal powerlessness, or a lack of awareness of one’s internal power.  Internal power imparts a sense of self-esteem and self-assurance.  So how do you and/or I arrive at this goal?  It seems to me that unless we are reared very uniquely, without any type of oppression or suppression, it is virtually impossible to be in touch with our internal power–and that’s what being in therapy generates, and it is never too late to become whole and empowered.

I hope that this has been helpful.  I would welcome any questions, comments or challenges.