How Much Is Your Freedom Worth?

How Much Is Your Freedom Worth?

How Much Is Your Freedom Worth?

In this week’s Success Newsletter, I would like to discuss the value of your freedom and what you are willing to give or give up in order to be free.

First a quick update:

“Dealing With Emotional Vampires”
Learn now how to identify, understand, and handle emotional vampires, the people who drain your energy and suck the life out of you. 

“Trump The Hero Turned Victim”
In psychology there is a relationship dynamic known as the Drama Triangle which consists of the Victim, the Rescuer and the Persecutor – roles which people assume in both professional and personal relationships. Donald Trump began his campaign convincing the American public that they are victims and he is the hero & rescuer, and now, suddenly, Trump has transformed into the helpless victim and critical persecutor.

“Narcissism – What it is and how to deal with narcissists”
The concept of Narcissism comes from Greek Mythology –the story of a man who is cursed to be in love with himself and his own image. There are 3 types of narcissists. Watch the video!

Now, let’s talk about the value of your freedom and what you are willing to give or give up in order to be free.

What does it mean to you to be free?
How do you define freedom?

The dictionary defines freedom as “the power or right to act, speak, or think as one wants without hindrance or restraint; the absence of subjection to foreign domination or despotic government; the state of not being imprisoned or enslaved.”

It can easily be argued that collectively in the West today, we are relatively free – free to speak, think and act with little hindrance or restraint. Of course, it must also be conceded that it can be argued that our freedoms are diminishing, particularly in the context of “the war on terror” which has resulted in the governments constantly spying on their own citizens (phones, internet and email) and patting down children, nursing mothers and elderly people who wish to board a plane.

However, this article is not about societal freedoms or lack thereof; its focus is on the personal freedoms each one of us has – the freedoms we are born with but lose in unhealthy relationships.

“Man is born free, but is everywhere in chains.” Rousseau.

It is clear that a person who marries and has children cannot enjoy the same freedoms as a single person with no children; the former has many more responsibilities and dependents than the latter.

However, many people also enter relationships where they give up their freedom, only for it to be replaced with a prison of abuse, control or manipulation.

Mary was 18 when she married in order to escape an abusive father. Unconsciously, she married an abusive man just like her father. As a mother of 2 young children, she accepted the abuse for many years “for the sake of the children.” One day, after suffering years of physical, mental and emotional abuse, Mary ran away. She left behind the children; she had no financial means to tend to them or to legally fight her controlling and abusive husband.

Mary had to live with the regret of losing her children and yet she also had to choose her freedom or choose to continue to be abused.

Of course, not all of us are faced with the same extreme choices or circumstances such as those of Mary. And yet, each one of us will find ourselves in a relationship where our freedom is being challenged, and I am not referring to the obvious abusive, controlling or manipulative relationships.

Instead, I am referring to the dynamics we create within our personal and professional relationships.

What is the dynamic you experience in your relationships?

Do you feel encouraged, supported and inspired to be more of who you are, to express and expand your core essence or do you feel paralyzed, trapped and constantly shrinking or fearful?

Do you feel big or small in your relationships?

Do you feel free or trapped in your relationships?

What is expected of you in your relationships – mentally, emotionally, physically and financially?

What is expected of you in your relationships in the form of:

  • Attention
  • Time
  • Energy
  • Restrictions
  • Regulations
  • Verbal Self-Expression
  • Emotional Self-Expression
  • Sexual Self-Expression
  • Dress
  • Diet
  • Friendships
  • Socializing

Do you place value on your choices or do you let other people devalue them?
Do you take care of your needs or only the needs of others?
Are you able to say no when you actually want to say no?

Do you realize that freedom is a choice and that you have the ability to carve out your life and constantly keep re-sculpting it?

“It’s better to die on your feet than to live on your knees.”
– Emiliano Zapata, a leading figure in the Mexican Revolution of 1910

It’s critical to remember that “We teach others how to treat us” i.e. if you lack freedom in your relationships, then understand that you are lacking the freedom because you allowed it and the other person has been programmed to treat you that way (an abusive/controlling person will be abusive/controlling to anyone who agrees to be in a relationship with him/her); if your partner speaks harshly or restricts you, it is because he/she knows you are okay with it because you have accepted it for so long.

It’s critical to remember that “We pay a price or exchange for everything in our life.”

Thus, the question again arises: How much is your freedom worth?
What and how much are you willing to give up to have your freedom?
What is the price of your freedom?

Mary had to give up her children to be free of the abuse and to be free to be her true self. Another client left home at 18 and had to give up family financial support to be free, independent and away from the toxic home of a smoking alcoholic mother.

Of course, freedom doesn’t equal selfishness or disrespect or lack of accountability or responsibility. Freedom, does though, imply that you are being true to yourself and living your passion and life purpose. How much is that worth to you? What will you do today to be free?

If you need assistance to overcome fears and other blocks to your freedom, book a one-on-one session with me. 

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I wish you the best and remind you “Believe in yourself -You deserve the best!”

Patrick Wanis Ph.D.
Celebrity Life Coach, Human Behavior & Relationship Expert & SRTT Therapist

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