When I think about my past, one of the things I would never have called myself was insecure.

I had a diverse peer group. I rolled with the cool kids. I was friendly with the nerds, had respect from the thugs, some of my best guy friends were jocks – so it’s fair to say I had a well-rounded social life in Junior High and High School. Things were normal on the outside, and when you’re a teenager looking to find your place it’s almost mandatory to appear “normal” on the outside.

Entering adulthood was much of the same. Everything was about fun and projecting a certain image to the outside world. But behind the scenes I was damaging my soul through a series of very unhealthy relationship patterns stemming from trauma that I never realized had taken root inside of me.

Being in survival mode since my eyes opened coming out of the womb had programmed me to ignore my pain and focus on getting to the next day.

I lived a wounded existence. Created by others who were also wounded; who tried to love me to the best of their abilities but had no concept of how to love themselves properly. I learned to compensate by offering my love in the form of sex to any man who acted like he was accepting of whatever part of me that I decided to expose to him.

It was still fun.

Until I really wanted love.

When I offered my heart it was rejected, neglected, misused, manipulated and disregarded. Time and time again there was a special one who didn’t treat me like I was special.

All of the others didn’t matter. The chosen one for the moment would reject me because he sensed my vulnerability and insecurity. He thrived on my lack of boundaries that fed his ego. They call this narcissism in the world of psychology, and my behavior would be diagnosed as co-dependent. The two are drawn together like a moth to a flame. He is not only one. “He” represents the men I chose to use to replace what I never had growing up. Attention, time, affection, reciprocity was what I thought I had to prove myself worthy of.

Self-realization eventually began when I entered a career in the mental health field and was surrounded by clinicians, psychologists and psychiatrists.

I began to understand what trauma, abuse and neglect really did to me. I realized that I was so used to having to be a fighter and hold it all together, that I obstructed my own healing. I was so concerned about projecting a certain image that I never realized I was conditioned to normalize dysfunction and suffering. I thought this was how it was supposed to be. How a relationship should look. So I settled in my comfort zone unaware that there was something on the other side.

Your behavior is a mirror of your heart posture.

When you stop putting yourself on layaway and giving away your best attributes at a discounted rate, you will attract others who recognize your value. Appreciating your unique gifts despite the lies that you have been force-fed will elevate you to a place where meaningful relationships will be formed. Walking with dignity, self-respect and conviction will manifest the opposite of insecurity.

You are worthy!

You can only set yourself free from negative patterns when you stop robbing yourself of the opportunity to heal and take the necessary steps to experience your personal evolution.

Self-discovery, self-love, self-worth and self-validation are vehicles that drive you down the road to your destination. A power position of strength rooted in unshakable confidence; assured that you are deserving of being treated with love and kindness from whomever you allow in your space.

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