The next part of living a VIVID life is to recognize we are made perfectly Imperfect.
There are several ways to find out if you suffered child abuse in this area. Don’t overlook emotional abuse as it is prevalent in many children’s experiences. One is to look for problems in ones spiritual life and do we have a healthy connection with God or are we really afraid of the angry old man with a white beard and robes holding a 36” Louisville Slugger ready to clobber you when you make a mistake. Do you feel as though your life has been a horrible game of “Whack a Mole” and you are the mole worried every time you poke your head out you’ll be punished for some misdeed? Do you get the feeling that you just can’t get life “right” that you just don’t make mistakes you probably were a “mistake”? Is life all about following a set of unattainable/ unrealistic rules that someone else makes up for you? Do you have a history of lying, manipulation so as not to admit you don’t feel good about yourself? These are questions one can use to help gage to what degree we have a problem with the authentic characteristic of imperfection.
I grew up in an environment (home and church) that taught that one could live a Christian life without sin so I got handed a big load of perfectionism that blinded me to my own faults but made the faults of others stick out like a sore thumb. I developed as a “Goodie two-shoes” as a persona while others go completely the opposite way as “rebels”, the “Bad-One” or “Black Sheep” of the family. The Adaptation to child abuse in this characteristic causes “black or white” thinking, “good or bad”, either a giving in to a negative self view or creating a persona of perfection. The inability to own ones imperfection cripples our vision of reality that leads to living a lie, always looking over ones shoulder expecting at any moment to be exposed as a fraud one feels deep inside. We go to great lengths to hide these feelings and views of self to others as well as ourselves! When presented with irrefutable proof of our mistake or misdeed we react as a cornered beast and lash out violently or go to great lengths to avoid the person or situation. This Primary Symptom of Adult Codependency then produces a distorted view of reality and a nonexistent spiritual life which is replaced with following a set of rules or making up rules for one’s self that moves into the place reserved for God, “the God hole”. Therefore we need no “higher power” or we replace the “higher power” with a set of rules.