If you are familiar with the story of The Boiled Frog, you know what I’m about to refer to. If you aren’t familiar with it, it goes like this.
The boiling frog is a fable describing a frog being slowly boiled alive. The premise is that if a frog is put suddenly into boiling water, it will jump out, but if the frog is put in tepid water which is then brought to a boil slowly, it will not perceive the danger and will be cooked to death. The story is often used as a metaphor for the inability or unwillingness of people to react to or be aware of threats that arise gradually.
Think about the situations in life where you have accepted something awful and you have established this behavior towards you as your new normal.
Let’s look at a concrete example. You are in a relationship with someone that you love deeply, and one day a horrible fight becomes somewhat physical. She or he gives you a push in anger. At first you are shocked, hurt, horrified. Once you make up and the apologies are made, you realize that it was just a moment in time. Your new normal becomes “well it wasn’t that bad, at least he or she didn’t hit me”. Months go by with several minor arguments and no repeat offense. Until the day that there is a huge argument and a hit. Again you are horrified, shocked, frightened but you make up and are reassured by the apologies. Your new normal becomes “well at least it wasn’t a bad hit”. And this is how you begin to slowly boil – virtually unaware that things are getting worse all the time.
This can happen in workplaces as well. It begins with minor disrespect or harassment and you do nothing because you don’t want to be THAT person that makes a mountain out of a molehill. As the heat gets cranked up, you begin to tell yourself that at least you have a job, at least you enjoy your other co-workers, or you can’t do anything because you need the job. So you adapt. With each incident your new normal becomes ever more horrific. If you were to tell an outsider what was going on they would be mortified but you have accepted it. In fact, when you do confide in friends or family they tell you how wrong this is! You make excuses and defend; you defend yourself, and you defend the people and situations who are cranking the heat. Sound familiar?
When you live with the shame of what you have allowed in your life, it is difficult to see a way out. You feel sometimes that you deserve what you have or that you somehow have brought this on yourself. This does cost us something and we need to find a solution to these toxic and horrific pots of boiling water we are in. How do we get out?
As that water gets hotter and hotter, it is important to recognize the situation for what it is. In every situation in life we also bear some responsibility, even if it’s just the fact that we have allowed it. Many of you have heard me speak and you hear me use the phrase, “what you permit you promote”. That applies here.
So let’s talk strategy…..
Step 1- Stop promoting by permitting.
Step 2- Focus on loving yourself enough to set limits on the temperature in that pot of water. A great way to do this is to ask yourself what would you say to your son, daughter, best friend if they were in your situation. Now say these things to yourself, say them everyday, and while you are saying them start to allow yourself to believe that you deserve more. If you have not tried EFT Tapping then get on that right quick! This will transform your life and is something I use everyday! https://youtu.be/CzsI4hGDL54
Step 3-Surround yourself with the people who make you strong, who fill you up, who give you support and will help guide you through the practical steps needed to get yourself out of the pot of water you are in. THERE IS NO SUBSTITUTE FOR SUPPORT!
Frogs can live on land as well as in water, but we humans can only live on land. Get out of your pot, find a safe, strong place to heal and begin to live your best life. If you need help reach out, I’m here.