HALEY JAMES

May 9, 2023

5 Things I’m Currently Working On In Therapy

amongst the flowers

5 Things I’m Currently Working On In Therapy

Therapy can be a powerful tool for personal growth and healing. Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about myself and my mental health through therapy, and I continue to work on areas that need improvement. In this post, I want to share five things I’m currently working on in therapy that I hope will inspire others to seek help and continue to grow.

Believing there is *Actually* no timeline

One of the things I have been working on in therapy is a super common issue I know so many of us deal with – learning to believe that there is no set timeline for life and that I am not behind compared to my friends and other people my age.

I’ve found that in talking to others, this is actually SO common, even for the people I would think couldn’t possibly feel that way – yet they do.

Watching my friends and peers travel, move up in their careers, date, buy houses, get married, have kids, and achieve so many amazing milestones over the last decade – while I was just at home trying to stay alive – definitely made it hard for me to feel like I wasn’t INCREDIBLY behind.

It’s difficult to start to come out of that experience and look around without feeling like I’m so behind everyone else in society’s timeline. I feel like my life paused for a decade and I just can’t catch up. It’s so painful, and one of the things that has been the hardest to deal with over the last few years.

I’ve been working on this topic in particular for YEARS in therapy, and I have personally found it is something that I have to intentionally work at regularly to avoid falling into the depths of comparison.

Something that has helped me in therapy has been acknowledging what I have accomplished and focusing on celebrating the steps I am taking towards my personal next milestone moments. This helps to keep me focused on my own progress and my own goals rather than constantly looking at others and wishing I had had the time to get there too.

I’m not sure when or if this feeling will go away – but I am so grateful to have therapy to gain perspective, coping practices, process it, and be reminded that my journey is worth celebrating and being proud of too.

Not blaming myself for being sick

This one – yeah – ouch. For five years I went undiagnosed with SO many doctors telling me nothing was wrong and I was doing this to myself. I was causing my symptoms – from stress, anxiety, wanting attention, wanting to lose weight etc. etc. That I was CHOOSING to feel sick. 

So when I was diagnosed with not 1, not 2, not 3, not 4, but 20 different conditions – and it was very clear I was not making it up or doing it to myself – my trauma and all of the gaslighting made me believe that it was still my fault and/or that I was making it all up.

I’m working on letting go of the self-blame that I’ve carried for so long. When you have a dynamic disability, it’s easy to blame yourself for not being able to fully recover or for experiencing setbacks. I know that I didn’t cause my illness and that I did everything I could to get better, but I still find it challenging to let go of the blame. For five years, doctors told me that my symptoms were all in my head and that I was just anxious, which only added to the self-blame. Through therapy, I’m learning to acknowledge and release the self-blame and focus instead on self-compassion and self-acceptance. It’s a difficult process, but I’m slowly learning to be kinder to myself and to recognize that my illness does not define me.

Accepting that not everyone will understand My Story Or My Heart

One thing I’ve learned in therapy is that not everyone will understand my journey, and that’s okay. While I strive to feel understood by others, I recognize that it’s impossible for everyone to fully comprehend what I’ve been through and why I’ve made certain decisions. It can be disheartening when people don’t understand, but I’m learning to accept that it’s not my responsibility to make others understand and that I can still value their support and love even if they don’t fully get it.

Working on my relationship with food

My relationship with food is another major area of focus in my therapy. Due to gastroparesis and other motility conditions, I can’t eat like most people, and I rely on a feeding tube to get the nutrition I need. This has made my relationship with food complicated and challenging, and it’s something I’ve been working on for years. I hope to one day be able to eat again without relying on a feeding tube, but I know there are never any guarantees. In therapy, I’m learning to navigate my relationship with food and find ways to enjoy food-related experiences without feeling left out or ashamed.

Learning to feel enough

Finally, I’m working on overcoming the feeling of not being enough. Like many people, I struggle with feeling like I’m not measuring up and that I’m failing in some way. However, my experience has made this feeling even more pronounced. Spending so much time being taken care of by my parents and doctors and not being able to be present with my friends as they navigated life milestones has made it easy to feel like I’m not enough. Additionally, not being able to work or see people due to high-risk COVID has only exacerbated this feeling. Through therapy, I’m learning to reframe my thoughts and recognize that my worth isn’t tied to my achievements or productivity. I’m learning to accept myself as I am and to celebrate my own unique strengths and qualities.

Are you in therapy? What are you working on?

I hope that reading about my struggles and what I am working on in therapy helps you feel less alone if you are struggling with them too and also empowers you to try out therapy too! It really has changed my life and been such a gamechanger for my health & wellbeing! 

Have you struggled with any of that too? What did you do? I’d love to hear about your experiences! You can share your thoughts with me by commenting below! Thanks so much for being here!

xx I love you, I mean it

DISCLAIMER

Please note that all content on this page, website, and any affiliated resources is for informational and educational purposes only. It is not intended to provide medical advice or to take the place of treatment from a physician. NO information on this page or website should be used to diagnose, treat, prevent, or cure any disease or condition. Additionally, please be aware that some of the links on this page may be affiliate links, from which I may receive a small commission if you make a purchase through those links.

Hi! I'm Haley James

I’m a California-based purpose-driven, multi-passionate entrepreneur, chronic illness & rare disease advocate, speaker, podcaster, designer, YouTuber, content creator and really, at my core, just a woman who wants to love & help support people in creating lives they love!

How did I get here? Well, after getting really sick in my early 20’s and spending years fighting for my life, I realized I not only was fighting to live, but to live a life I truly loved! 

Now I’m on a journey to creating that life for myself and want to bring you along so you can create a life you love too! I hope you’ll join me!

Hi! I'm Haley James!

I’m a California-based purpose-driven, multi-passionate entrepreneur, chronic illness & rare disease advocate, speaker, podcaster, designer, YouTuber, content creator and really, at my core, just a woman who wants to love & help support people in creating lives they love!

How did I get here? Well, after getting really sick in my early 20’s and spending years fighting for my life, I realized I not only was fighting to live, but to live a life I truly loved! 

Now I’m on a journey to creating that life for myself and want to bring you along so you can create a life you love too! I hope you’ll join me!

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Come Be Part Of The Bloom!

I love connecting with people in this community! It’s my favorite thing that I get to do and this is one of the places I love to do it!

I only ever want to send you things I truly believe in my heart will serve you, support you, equip you, empower you and make you feel seen, heard & loved! Which to me means 0% spam & 100% all good things!

As a welcome gift, you’ll instantly unlock a 10% discount on your first store purchase, gain immediate access to my most popular free guide and of course friendship with me and this community! We can’t wait to have you!

THESE EMAILS I SEND – I PROMISE – FEEL LIKE LETTERS FROM A FRIEND

Come Be Part Of
The Bloom!

I love connecting with people in this community! It’s my favorite thing that I get to do and this is one of the places I love to do it!

I only ever want to send you things I truly believe in my heart will serve you, support you, equip you, empower you and make you feel seen, heard & loved! Which to me means 0% spam & 100% all good things!

As a welcome gift, you’ll instantly unlock a 10% discount on your first store purchase, gain immediate access to my most popular free guide and of course friendship with me and this community! We can’t wait to have you!

YAY! I'm So excited to have you joining this community!

As promised here is your first welcome gift! Just click below and it’ll automatically download!

Also, be sure to check your email to make sure you received my welcome email that has your 10% off discount code so you can get another gift for yourself because you deserve it!

YAY! I'm So excited to have you joining this community!

As promised here is your first welcome gift! Just click below and it’ll automatically download!

Also, be sure to check your email to make sure you received my welcome email that has your 10% off discount code so you can get another gift for yourself because you deserve it!

YAY! I'm So excited to have you joining this community!

As promised here is your first welcome gift! Just click below and it’ll automatically download!

Also, be sure to check your email to make sure you received my welcome email that has your 10% off discount code so you can get another gift for yourself because you deserve it!