I’ve been a fan of Dr Phil for a long time….like since he was on Oprah back in the day.
Along with ‘so how’s that workin’ for ya’, another of his catch phrases is ‘we all need a soft place to fall.’ I always loved that one, the idea of being a soft place to fall for someone else.
I realized that I misunderstood what being a soft place to fall really looked like for a really long time.
I used to see it as making someone’s landing softer by fixing their problem for them. For example calling in sick for somesone because he was still drunk and couldn’t make the call themselves. Or doing something for someone else before they have even asked. Or I even paid a utility bill for someone who’s water was cut off and I didn’t tell them I did it.
But what this did was it prevented the other person from having to deal with the consequences of their actions or lack there of or even letting them figure out when they should ask for help.
I would often quietly take care of it. Not for the recognition. Not because I wanted to be thanked for doing it. And not even for them, it was really for me. For me to feel like better about being a good person. How selfish and ridiculous is that. This actually makes me feel awful about all the times I interjected myself under the illusion of being helpful.
Gosh this isn’t at all where I thought this post was going. I guess it’s a good thing I’m heading to my step study meeting.
It’s so hard to see when you are being codependent when you are in the middle of doing it.
My intentions were always from a loving place and I never wanted to harm anyone from growing from an experience. But I know I have.
We all need a soft place to fall. I see this so different now. It’s not my place to just go fix stuff. Sometimes sitting on my hands is what I need to do, and let things play out. Boundaries help keeps me working my program. I can still be a soft place to fall with boundaries and waiting.
I need a soft place to fall. I don’t have to do everything myself and am learning when I need to ask for help.
I’ve got to jump off here and get to my meeting. So until next time…….
My journey to serenity continues…