We have all been blessed with a “healthy true self”, we were born with it. Unfortunately, we were also all burdened with an “unhealthy façade.” There is an enduring battle between the better angels of our spirit and the lesser demons of our soul from our first breath to our last.

Healthy True Self

The “healthy true self” defines your purpose in life. It is innocent, genuine, tender, sensitive, open, honest, simple, transparent, clear, intuitive, creative, courageous, and confident.  If our “healthy true self” is nurtured by caregivers who are also “healthy true selves”, we will be full of harmony, joy and experience the most out of our life and in our relationships.

Unhealthy Facade

On the other hand, the “unhealthy façade” is our least appealing color. It is mischievous, deceitful, hurtful, unaware, closed, duplicitous, secretive, manipulative, and unhappy.

The Battle Between the “Healthy True Self” and the “Unhealthy Facade”

The “self” that dominates depends on who we are and what we learn from our life journey. Sometimes the “healthy true self” is winning and we feel hopeful. Conversely, the “unhealthy façade” is winning and we feel fearful. It changes all the time. The battle depends on how we perceive our environment, our actions, and our internal dialogue. A “healthy true self” tells you that you can do it, while an “unhealthy façade” creates doubts and distortions in our lives. When we are surrounded by positivity, the “healthy true self” gets stronger and more prominent in our life. It goes without saying that when we are surrounded by negativity, the “unhealthy façade” gets stronger and more prominent.

Meet John and Mary

Here is a common example that many can relate to:

John:  “Honey, I am home. I had a very long day at work…”

Mary:  “Finally, you are home! The kids have been acting up all day; I am exhausted.”

John:  “I am really tired too.  Let’s finish dinner and get some wine…. perhaps we can have sex…”

Mary:  “Tonight?  I told you I am exhausted! No way!”

John’s Side of the Story

John is a typical husband having a difficult day at work.  He comes home and hope to gain some comfort and closeness from his wife through sexual intimacy. This is quite common.

The “unhealthy façade” is occupying the negative thoughts in John’s mind. They include doubts, negatively, and distortions. John does not want his wife to know that he’s been struggling at work. He withholds his true feelings, because he fears that she will look down on him and even dislike him. His negative voice convinces him that he has never been good enough for his wife and not worthy of her love and time. Since she does not want to have sex with him, it validates his negative thoughts. Once again, he is rejected—this time by his wife instead of his work situation.

Mary’s Side of the Story

Mary is a typical wife having a difficult day at home with the kids. When John comes home, she hopes to get some comfort and closeness from her husband through compassion and some support with the kids. This is quite common.

Mary is not interested in having sex with John right now. She sees him as self-centered, because he only thinks about himself. Further, she does not feel loved and supported by him because he does not ask how she is doing each day. Unfortunately, she does not receive an emotional connection from him. She feels unloved, unimportant, and unworthy. In her mind, John does not even care about her. Since he did not ask her about her day, it validates her feelings that he is selfish. Her “unhealthy façade” dominates her. She believes her negative thoughts, John only wants me for pleasure and he does not really love me. He does not care about me period.

Their Story

If this couple continue to let their “unhealthy facades” interact with one another, they will feel unloved and unwanted by each other forever. This is the manipulation that feeds the “unhealthy facades”. It dominates in toxic relationships. It thrives on loneliness, distance, unloved and unwanted feelings. Further, it will generate and create many more wicked marital issues.

If John and Mary were to embrace their “healthy true selves”, they would be able to have more intimate conversations and help each other out of a difficult time. Mary could have the courage to tell John “just ask me about my day and listen to me.” John would be willing to do that. John could have the courage to tell Mary that he’s having a rough go of it at work and she would be willing to support him as well.

If each individual openly shares their difficulties, they could face the challenges together. They would each have the confidence in themselves that these challenges are part of their growth. This sharing would create closeness and this closeness would allow them to overcome these challenges much more easily.

Choose your Side of the Battle

Which “self” would you like to see in you and your partner every day? It’s your choice. You have the power and the responsibility to make this choice. It’s time to boot out the negative thoughts that control you and your relationships. Come join Living Harbor to build the skills to lessen these negative thoughts.