Recover from Your Girly Thoughts

By Patricia O’Gorman, PhD

Author of The Girly Thoughts 10-Day Detox Plan: The Resilient Woman’s Guide to Saying NO to Negative Self-Talk and YES to Personal Power (publication date 10.28.14)

The Resilient Woman: Mastering the 7 Steps to Personal Power (2013)

Healing Trauma Through Self-Parenting—The Codependency Connection (2012)

September is Recovery Month. We’ve had an entire month of reminders that we can change how we feel by changing our actions, our friends, even our diets. Hmmm?

Recovery is a different process than a cure, and much as we would like a cure for depression, addiction, and even our own negative thinking, there just isn’t one. But we have something that in some ways is even better.

Instead of being cured by something done to you, you get to do something to yourself that changes you and brings you into wellness. And you get to invite others into the party that is your wholeness.

Recovery involves paradoxes, one of which is that recovery is a process that only you can do, but you can’t do alone. Recovery involves utilizing your community to develop the support you need to make the changes you require to live the life you deserve. Recovery is so much better than a cure because it connects you to others who share the same struggles.

Detox From Your Inner Trash Talk (Girly Thoughts)

Your inner trash talk, your girly thoughts, are those societally informed thoughts that tell you if you are not perfect in your looks, in your actions, that any negative response you receive is your fault.

It’s time to detox from those and start your recovery! That recovery, too, is a paradox. Only you can do it, but you also can’t do it alone.

Yes, you need your girlfriends and even your guy friends, and maybe even your family, to support you in the process of:

  • Identifying those thoughts that tear you down and make you responsible for the poor actions of another, such as an abusive boyfriend or a mean boss
  • Naming these unproductive thinking as girly thoughts
  • Realizing that you are not the only person who is thinking them, so you can stop thinking you are nuts
  • Learning to replace this inner trash talk with thoughts that support you.

So as we approach the end of Recovery Month, celebrate by making recovery work for you. Join the process. Get support for feeling better by changing how you speak to the person closest to you: yourself. Recover from your girly thoughts!

One Billion Rising….by Dancing?

By Patricia O’Gorman, PhD

Author of: The Resilient Woman: Mastering the 7 Steps to Personal Power (publication date 3/5/13)

Pre-order: Amazon / Barnes & Noble

One billion? and we’re not talking about the Sequestration, which is planning to cut one trillion anyway, or the population of the US that is only about 315 million.  No, we are speaking about a global effort involving more than three times the population of the US — we are speaking about women uniting around the world to end violence against women and girls, and doing this in a distinctly female way – by dancing, walking out, rising up, even giving voice to our concerns by demanding, that the violence, END.  By drawing attention to our concerns, by using the skills we have, and even perhaps having some fun in the process. Why? Because, right now, 1 in 3 women on the planet will be beaten or raped during her lifetime, about one billion women, and that number includes some of you reading this blog.

Sometimes when something is so very common is feels even normal.  We have what I call our girly thoughts to thank for this, those societally driven messages concerning how we are to blame for all the misfortune we experience, and we are often not even aware that we are listening to them.

Girly thoughts are not new, and we come by them honestly. After all in the Bible, isn’t there a prayer to God, thanking HIM, for not being born a woman?  This example, and many, many others have resulted in many women being seen as less-than and as a consequence, acceptable targets for needing to be controlled, and for the rage of men.  And due to their girly thoughts many women even believe it was their fault.

But this doesn’t stop women from being courageous—you know what that is—acting in the face of fear, courage is not the absence of fear but taking action when you are, well, afraid.  On a daily basis we have all seen that being a woman can be very dangerous, particularly if the woman believes she has rights. But that hasn’t stopped so very many of us.   A woman could be shot in the head is she wants to go to school, have her clitoris removed, be targeted by a commanding officer, be slipped a drug so she is unable to fight off an attacker, or beaten by a drunk father or boyfriend who says he loves her.

So it probably sounds incredible to believe that we can make a difference by dancing.  How unreasonable is that, you may be wondering?  You may be asking where are the guns, the armies, the rockets – the real power?  After all isn’t that how we all been shown to demonstrate our power, through muscle, through clubs, through armaments, not to mention tradition and laws?  Well, that is how many show their power.  That is how we have been trained to understand power, as: might, intimidation, force.  But as for the real power, the answer is clear.  The real power is within each of us. This is the message of our recovery programs, the message our mothers wanted or perhaps did send us, and it is the message in this worldwide effort–onebillionrising.  We can begin to own our power, by uniting with other women, and men, in ONEBILLIONRISING/ is a global call to women and men across the planet to gather in their communities to dance and demand an end to the violence girls and women face, no matter what the cause.

What can you do?  First check out— then dare to use your personal power to consider creating your own event in your school, office, block, town. Plan to make it meaningful and perhaps even fun.  Break out of your comfort zone and even think about making an outrageous statement that is so engaging that others will want to dance with you, with all of us, enjoying the power of community, and the end to violence.  Realize that whether you are a woman in recovery, an ACoA, a sexual abuse survivor, you are connected to all other women who have experienced similar pain, trauma, discrimination, today, and in the past.  But understand that together we can all join to reduce, and even eliminate, the violence of the future, all through the improbable action of dancing together.

Need a little inspiration?  Listen to Lee Ann Womack “I Hope You Dance” after the jump…

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