Tips For Recovery From CEN
If you’re familiar with Childhood Emotional Neglect (CEN), you know how impactful it can be for your life and for the lives of the people around you.
Dr. Jonice Webb, who is the psychologist expert in CEN, shared tips for recovery from the invisible force that has shaped your life.
WHY IT’S IMPORTANT
– The way you are treated emotionally by your parents determines how you will treat yourself as an adult. This has been proven over and over again in study after study.
– Emotion is an undeniable part of your biology. If you ignore your emotions, you will feel ignored on some level, no matter how much care you give yourself in other ways.
– Emotion is the substance of all relationships. If you are not attending to your emotions, you are by-passing a vital source of connection and joy.
– Emotional Intelligence has been proven to be more valuable to success in life and work than general intelligence. It’s extremely vital that you know how to name, use, and manage emotion, as well as how to deal with it in others.
– People who received emotional validation from their parents in childhood are generally able to provide it automatically to their own children. People who didn’t receive it enough themselves will likely struggle to provide it as parents. It is vital to recognize what you didn’t get yourself so that you can make conscious effort to learn the missing skills, fill your own blind spots, and give your children what you didn’t get.
WHY IT’S DIFFICULT
– Emotion hides behind behavior. Your behavior is driven by your emotion. If behavior is the car, emotion is the engine. We easily see the car and everything it does. But in order to see the engine, we have to lift the hood and look.
– We are not born knowing the language of emotion. Emotion can be powerful, complex, and confusing. Many people find it easier to simply ignore it.
– If you have emotional blind spots yourself, you’ll be blind to other people’s emotions as well, including those of your children.
HOW TO DO IT
– Pay attention. Start to take note of your own true nature. What do you like, dislike, get angry about, feel afraid of, or struggle with? Observe these aspects of yourself in a non-judgmental way so that you become more in tune with yourself, and who you really are inside and out.
– Strive to get in touch with what you are feeling, including your pain.
– Ask yourself the following questions often:
Why did you do that?
Why do you say that?
How do you feel?
What do you want?
What are you afraid of?
What are you worried about?
What’s making you angry, sad, hurt, etc.?
Listen carefully to your own answers: These are difficult questions which may sometimes be hard to answer. But the simple act of asking and turning in to yourself starts to break down the wall between you and your emotions.
Be mindful that your goal is to feel and manage your emotions. This is perhaps the most difficult step. When you are able to discern what you’re feeling, it’s time to work on learning to tolerate, control, and appropriately express your feelings. These are skills with the power to change your life.
Never judge yourself for what you’re feeling. It’s what you do with a feeling that matters.
Judge yourself only for your actions, not your emotions.