Have you ever had the experience where you give a lot; you help, heal, support and inspire others – your colleagues, clients, friends or family, and you see positive effects of your contributions, but you don’t get recognition or validation from those you’re helping?
It’s as though you’re invisible.
If you’re familiar with this scenario, then you’ll also know that over time an ache to be seen develops, and an emptiness inside, even some resentment, which often leads to less than healthy ways of trying to fill the void.
The problem is not the giving
To ease the pain you might tell yourself that the best kind of giving is unconditional, that genuine giving is not about trying to get something in return.
It’s true; when you’re centered and grounded in your heart, you live from the higher wisdom that we are all connected in a continuous flow of life. Nothing really belongs to us, if it did, we would create exclusivity and separation…and this is incompatible with the Truth – that we are all One. But, if you tell yourself that giving is only about giving and the pain doesn’t go away, it points to a deeper issue that needs addressing.
The unconscious shield
The problem of invisibility usually has nothing to do with a misunderstanding about unconditional giving. In my experience, people who feel the pain of lack of recognition for their efforts often have highly developed heart centers. They invariably have a keen awareness of the suffering in others, which sparks their interest in developing a life path to heal and resolve the pain in others. The issue of not being seen usually goes back to early beginnings.
Sometimes a child is born into a family where the child’s state of consciousness is higher and more developed than that of their immediate family or community. Instead of celebrating the emergent light, which holds the potential for a new paradigm for the family, the child is perceived as a threat to the status quo in the group.
Subtly, or more overtly, the child is rejected or shut out. And the child, not yet having a mature emotional and psychological capacity, develops a protective layer of energy to help them go unnoticed and avoid the pain of rejection. This shield serves a useful and often necessary purpose in the original family but becomes a barrier to love and appreciation if it carries over into adulthood.
Drop the cloak
Like any habit, wearing a cloak of invisibility will feel safe, just like a favorite sweater feels warm and familiar, and the thought of dissolving the pattern may generate a feeling of vulnerability. However, the cloak needs to drop if you’re to be recognized for your impact and contribution.
The remedy is to begin in small steps. Start by taking time to appreciate yourself. Value your gifts and what you offer. Be really honest with yourself. Recognize that you need your own light reflected back to you just much as you reflect the light for others.
Drop into your heart and listen to your higher wisdom. Your heart will guide you towards situations and people who resonate with your light and level of consciousness. Practice being seen, and simultaneously be open to your own needs, with those you feel safe with, to build your confidence in being seen more fully in other areas of your life.
Love and appreciation, like a river which always flows towards the sea, is seeking to flow to you. Guaranteed.
How have you been keeping yourself invisible? Come share on the comments below.
Fiona! My goodness woman, you are always so amazingly accurate and insightful in your posts. That last one hit me like a hammer particularly what you said about growing up in a family that didn’t get you. Wow! I’m still feeling the emotional impact and releasing from what you shared. I grew up in a large, 10 people, 52 first cousins, German Catholic family AND community. I often wandered around dazed and confused b/c what I thought, how I felt was so discrepant from the thoughts and feelings of my community. So, I had to learn very quickly how to shut that part of me down. Luckily I wasn’t that interested in fitting in so I didn’t really shut it all the way down, but I got very leery of truly being me. I’m on this amazing journey now, and your newsletter was just a beautiful confirmation of the journey so thank you and keep the blogs coming. They make a huge difference for people.
Thank you for your willingness to shine your own light in your life and work, Roxanne. Expressing our true nature is never about trying to ‘fit in’. It’s all about standing in and living out of our authentic understanding of what is true. This is love in action. Fiona