Hey I’m Sarah and I’m a recovering people pleaser… I wasn’t always as assertive in relationships and life as I am now.
I grew up as an only child to a stressed single mom and never really bonded with my father who was more about strict rules and image than sharing an emotional connection and being loving. My mother’s anger, rage, and unpredictability frightened me as a kid and I learned how to keep my mouth shut when I needed to and to keep things to myself and withhold my true self and feelings.
I learned that some feelings were “ok” and allowed and some were “bad” and off limits.
I was always on edge and could never let my guard down, physically and emotionally.
I felt very alone and that no one else on the planet knew what happened behind closed doors (because no one else did!).
My escape was reading, playing with horse figurines, and cuddling my black cat who was with me for 18 years!
This dynamic persisted until well after I graduated college. Before I truly found my voice only a few years ago, I dated men who abandoned me over and over and I needed them to prove to me that I was worthy and deserving of love. I tolerated bad behavior from family and friends and felt like I had to be the caretaker to be of value to others. I felt stifled and that my feelings didn’t matter. I couldn’t trust or let anyone see my true self because that would risk rejection, ridicule, and criticism. I felt lost, defeated, unworthy, sad, and trapped at the same time.
It wasn’t until I fell to the floor in tears AGAIN that I realized I was accepting the love I thought I deserved based on how I felt about myself. It wasn’t until I learned that we teach people how to treat us that I started taking strengthening my assertiveness seriously and began to feel empowered.
My self esteem began to shift as soon as I started doing esteem-able acts.
I learned that assertiveness is the ability to act in harmony with your self esteem in a way that doesn’t hurt others.
I learned that self care is the FOUNDATION to feeling and behaving assertively and
that it’s important to verbally and confidently express how others’ behavior makes us feel.
I learned that we’re not obligated to keep people in our lives that drain us, disrespect us, abuse us, or aren’t good for us.
I learned that setting boundaries isn’t about withholding forgiveness or staying resentful, it’s about the quality of interactions with other people.
I learned how to stop stuffing my feelings and stand up for myself and communicate
in a clear and direct way without sarcasm, jokes, aggression, pouting, or revenge.
*And I started to feel better.* I started to feel empowered, confident, and encouraged that I finally had the tools I was searching for. Things started to fall into place. Once I pushed away the behaviors, people, and situations that no longer served me, the right people and things started coming into my life.
I’ve collected and assembled these tools over the years and have brought healing to myself and others through their use. (I also work as an aerospace engineer which has also helped me with assertiveness, but my passion lies in the personal relationships aspect more than corporate.)
Whether it’s just a book recommendation you’re looking for or 9 months of intensive one-on-one coaching, I’m confident you will come away with some insight, clarity, and relief from working with me.
If you can relate to my story, it’s time to stop asking why people keep hurting you, it’s time to ask yourself why you keep allowing it.
It’s time to stop saying “yes” to stuff you hate.
It’s time to realize that self care is not selfish because everyone benefits when you’re happy!
There are things you can do!