You’re Not “Too Much”
Being scared to take up space means feeling like it’s not OK for us to have wants or needs. That is not OK for us to “inconvenience” or “burden” other people.
When we’re scared to take up space, we often believe deep down that the only way for us to avoid abandonment is to put our needs aside and make ourselves as convenient and agreeable as possible. Maybe then, if we’re easy enough to be around, others will put up with us. They won’t notice how bad we really are.
Vulnerable to Manipulation and Abuse
Being afraid to take up space makes us vulnerable to manipulation and abuse. When we believe that we can’t have any wants or needs, we tend to pair up with people who have endless wants and needs. We fit together like perfect puzzle pieces. We’ve tried to compensate for our low self-esteem by disappearing—they’ve compensated for theirs by taking up as much space as possible.
Which appeals to us, at first, because the attention is never focused on us! What a dream! We’re great at focusing on others, never requesting a thing ourselves. They require constant attention. A match made in heaven. Except, not really, because eventually we realize that hiding out in a relationship that demands we be a doormat or else, is a horrible and traumatic experience.
The Antidote to Low Self-Esteem?
The antidote to low self-esteem is self-compassion. Healing our inner child. Learning to show up for ourselves in the ways that others have failed us. This is an ongoing, life-long practice. It is not a quick fix, but it is a lasting and unshakable one.
Questions for Journaling and Self-reflection:
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Other Services Offered by Maggie
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