Since I have become a strong basecamp, my relationships are flourishing and so am I.
My children no longer can give me grief even if they still do not behave greatly under my ex-husband’s disruptive influence.
I am no longer bending over backwards, taking all the blame and responsibility feeling everything is my fault. I am no longer confused and at the mercy of circumstances; I have seen my martyrdom behavior for what it is – manipulative and ineffective – and thus I AM free to love myself, be lovable and shine.
I worked hard to be able to behave this way and it has been worth every penny and every minute.
I learned that equipping myself and giving up misguided behavior like martyrdom was the biggest favor I could have done to myself and anybody else in my life, my erratic ex included, although he may never realize this.
When the America’s cup yacht races were held here in New Zealand some years ago I saw their basecamps from close by. They were impressive and no wonder their charges performed well . . . and they in the end were only playing a sport!!!!
But you and me are doing ‘real’ life, you and me too are having the responsibility for a ‘team’ , a team called ‘family’, so how come for years I was satisfied with being badly equipped?
Champion sport performers equip themselves to their eyeballs to perform to their best.
I have taken their lead and decided to equip myself to the eyeballs as well, hence my metaphor of strong basecamp to have me and my family perform at our best too.
For most of my life I played the role of martyr, allowing others to plunder and abuse an already badly put together basecamp; “ME”.
I know for sure that none of those sailors in the America’s Cup would have gone to sea supported by such a weak basecamp and its basecamp would also have spoken up demanding what it needed so it could function better.
But not me, no wonder that I had trouble keeping my boat, called family, afloat.
I took responsibility after responsibility on board thinking nothing of it and before I knew it I was out of my depth big time.
I was falling apart and so was my family.
All I could think to do though was row my boat faster, but that didn’t help of course, being nicer to the crew made no difference either nor did ‘doing drama’ save anybody when the boat was sinking.
What would have gotten us out of trouble and safely ashore would have been a well equipped and lovable basecamp giving firm and clear guidance.
And let’s face it, no sailor likes to sail under a weak captain who cannot command the boat.
It confuses the crew and can even lead to mutiny.
Confused women do not know how to be good captains, how to give commands and tell the crew what is expected of them.
Your second in command, your husband also needs to know what course you are sailing, what is needed for a good trip; it pays to tell him how to support his captain so the crew won’t resist commands. Alas I as a martyr was not inclined to share responsibility. I would rather work harder on my own, have exhaustion make good decisions impossible and put the whole ship in danger of going under.
A good basecamp is like a good captain, she can make or break the trips we take in life.
There are a lot of skills a female captain needs to learn, there are a lot of things a female captain needs to unlearn.
The first step is to commit to unlearn unserving behavior like martyrdom or victimhood.
Misguided behavior can be disguised in many forms; they might look good on the outside but are always terribly ineffective.
Many of us need help with this first step to see how misguided our behavior is and how that leaves us badly equipped.
That first step also includes seeing that we need to do things differently that will cost money and even more demand ‘ME’ time to keep our ship from sinking.
Yes, I refer to SELF-care and inner growth; yes I mean seriously investing in yourself and knowing that that is love-in-action, to have you be lovable and make you shine like strong basecamps are supposed to.
If you need more encouragement, last week Peggy Nolan and I did a radioshow exposing martyrdom and its tricky disguises.
Let’s acknowledge that we cannot do it for ourselves by ourselves as Feminine Power tells us. We need other women.