In 2008, I Felt Like I Was Going Insane in the Dating World...
Here's my story of emotional embodiment...
I grew up in a small town on the East Coast. My childhood was great in many ways and difficult in others. The details of my challenges aren't relevant for this story. What's important is that I had emotional needs in my childhood that did not get met and when I went off to college, I began to experience some of the consequences of these unmet needs from my upbringing.
When I met my first boyfriend at college I was wounded, emotionally immature and fixated on finding love. I was also drinking a ton and binging on TV to deal because I didn't want to feel. Dating and relationships was the arena the most wounding came out and I developed a cycle of dating and relationships that would go something like this:
Someone new comes along I meet while out at a loud bar, party or from online.
We date, I like them A LOT and I try everything to get them to like me back even though they're massively unavailable to me.
I change myself. My clothes, my interests and sometimes my personality. I try and get them into a relationship with me.
They reluctantly enter into relationship but they're unavailable so they end it.
I’m emotionally shattered and ashamed and replay everything about the relationship back over in my head.
I wait for the sting to wear off, the memories to fade, pump myself back up, get back on the horse and find myself at a loud bar again or back online dating and the cycle would start all over again...
I was so confused. I thought I was a good looking, smart, successful, high achieving woman in her 30s so my troubles in dating and relationships baffled me.
I had a BA in Psychology
I had a Masters of Science in Education
I had a successful career in elementary education
I was a popular DJ in New York City
I had friends to go out with every weekend
I had my own beautifully decorated apartment in Brooklyn
Despite my frustrations, I was determined to fix what I thought was broken in my love life. So I took to dating guides to study and learn how to master finding a partner. By age 32, I had read countless blog posts, magazine articles and books. I was also trying out all my tips and trick on new people I'd meet.
Here was my iBooks Library in 2013.
Have you read any of these?
Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man by Steve Harvey
Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus: The Classic Guide to Understanding the Opposite Sex by John Gray
Are All Guys Assholes? by Amer Madison
It's Called a Breakup Because It's Broken: The Smart Girl's Breakup Buddy by Greg Behrendt and Amiira Rutola-Behrendt
Date Like a Man by Myreah Moore
Why Men Love Bitches: From Doormat to Dreamgirl by Sherry Argov
Why Men Marry Bitches: A Woman's Guide to Winning Her Man's Heart by Serry Argov
All The Rules: Time Tested Secrets for Caputuring the Heart of Mr. Right by Ellen Fein and Sherri Schneider
The Rules for Online Dating: Capturing the Heart of Mr. Right in Cyberspace by by Ellen Fein and Sherri Schneider
Text. Love. Power. The Ultimate Girl's Guide to Dating in the New Millennium by Vanessa Taylor
Spoiler alert. None of it worked.
After devouring all the manuals, I managed to date people for a couple months at a time but the relationships always ended the same three ways:
1. They would slowly would disappear.
2. They would tell me they weren't ready for a relationship.
3. They would say they met someone else.
I watched my friends evolve, get married and go deeper in their committed relationships. Lemme tell you, it hurt. All this time I was hiding that fact that I was desperate to find a partner behind my busy social life, material success and "all the good ones are taken" attitude.
Behind closed doors of my beautifully decorated apartment, I was home alone binging Netflix, drinking too much wine and quietly wondering if there was something wrong with me.
To make matters worse, I hooked up my old flames from time to time when my insecurities and the fear of ending up alone became too much to bear.
I was unhappy and moving from city to city (read trying to outrun myself) searching for answers.
In each new city, I recreated the same scenarios in dating and relationships that left me feeling angry, sad, emotionally exhausted and spiritually defeated. I was reaching a breaking point but I didn't know what to do about it.
In 2016, in a moment of clarity, I realized I had to start feeling what I didn't want to feel.
I decided to explore my relationship with alcohol, take a break from drinking and dating and start down a path of getting to know myself.
It was also when the real work began.
I didn't know it at the time, but with that decision I had committed fully to discovering the truth of who I was without numbing my emotions and my constant search for partnership.
And with this decision I started my journey to emotional embodiment.
Here's the most important thing I've learned along the way:
I couldn't have a happy healthy relationship if I wasn't able to approach my love life as an integrated adult.
I realized that my emotional age was not in alignment with my physical age and that I stopped growing emotionally when
(1) my emotional needs in childhood remained unmet.
(2) I kept using alcohol, relationships, TV, food, spending etc...to avoid feeling
I began to see my self-sabotaging patterns in dating and relationship covered up the truth that I needed to resolve what remain unresolved inside me.
Only through this emotional embodiment and growth could any worthwhile relationship be possible for me. I learned that my emotional immaturity was reflected in everything.
In my family, my work relationships, my intimate relationships and the relationship I had with myself.
But how did I start my emotional embodiment?
Well, I had to stop trying to figure it out myself with all my dating manuals and other self help books and get some real help with my integration work.
I set out on the difficult yet rewarding task of becoming an embodied woman who could finally be ready for a mature relationship.
(1) I had to orient myself and see where I actually was in comparison to where I said I wanted to be. I acknowledge my own readiness to change and started creating a powerful Vision of want I wanted and the woman I wanted to be.
(2) I began awakening to the ongoing beliefs, habits and actions that were hindering my emotional development and lowering my capacity for healthy love
(3) I gained awareness of the link between my upbringing and my patterns of self-abandoning
(4) I attuned to my emotional landscape and the deepest needs of my inner family (inner child, inner teenager, critical parent) grieved my losses and completed the past
(4) I began anew in my romantic relationships applying new habits and ways of thinking/being that align with my new Vision and emotionally mature relationships.
(5) I committed to myself and the embodiment of my Truth in all areas of my life.
During this process, I felt an inner peace and wholeness I'd never known.
I experienced real emotional healing and a lasting transformation and this is the Embodied Womanhood Framework I now teach.
I felt alive and excited about what was possible for me. My potential and direction in life became clear and I started running toward it. Life wasn't perfect. I still dealt with challenges in my life but when I felt sad, frustrated or forgot the path I was on, I had tools to work through it and find my way back home again.
Finding a partner became easier at this point and at age 34 I landed in a committed relationship that allowed me to practice and embody lasted for 6 years. It was a partnership I had fun in and felt deeply challenged by everyday to keep growing emotionally.
When it got very challenging I had my roadmap of self-commitment to guide me back to myself.
Over the course of our 6 year we did an immense amount of work accumulating tools and practices to maintain the health and stability of our partnership. We had an exquisitely beautiful run at it and at the end of it uncoupled with heart, truth and dignity.
In partnership we faced the deepest parts of ourselves and for that I know we will always be grateful.
Most importantly, in partnership, I felt full permission to love without fear and bring all of myself out each day because I did that work for myself first.
Today, my sense of self in intact.
I feel whole.
My purpose and direction in life are still clear to me.
I'm equipped with tools to embody and integrate all the grief, all the lessons and all the joy of this life-changing partnership as well as any other curveballs life throws my way.
This is what it means to be an embodied woman.
Ready to start your embodiment journey?
If you made it down this far my guess is you're wondering what your embodiment journey could look like.
Emotional embodiment isn't just about finding or creating a healthy relationship.
Sure, if you're struggling to find a partner emotional embodiment work can help you overcome what's emotionally blocking you so when you engage in dating you can be clear, feel secure and have some fun in your search for a deep meaningful relationship.
And If you're struggling in your current partnership emotional embodiment work can help you use your partnership to heal, grow and become an emotionally free woman. A woman who will have her partner love her with all their heart because you did the work for yourself first.
But the rewards of emotional embodiment work go far beyond your love life.
When you're emotionally embodied you will...
Know yourself better
Trust yourself better
Feel your worth, belonging and “enough-ness”
Do things with joy and pleasure
Generate power to go after your dreams and goals
Expand your capacity to hold sensation
Expand you capacity to give love
Expand your capacity to receive prosperity
Emotional embodiment is the key to a self-committed, authentic and fulfilling life.
I would be honored to take you on this journey.
PS: Go here to learn more about me (my background, my credentials and my method of embodiment).
Download your FREE Gift!
The Empowered Emotions Guidebook: An Exploration Into 5 Difficult Emotions ...and How to Use Them Instead to Empower You and Your Love Life