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Approval, RSD and all things in between!

I was watching a series on Netflix and one of the characters said to another that they were “addicted to approval“ from one particular person.

This has sat with me. I attached myself to it. I knew exactly what they meant.

At the time of watching it, I still hadn't published my newsletter, with my excuse being that I can’t publish it until I have the accompanying free worksheet finished. It wasn't actually in the newsletter, but it was mentioned along with instructions as to how to go about receiving it. Therefore my newsletter was still sitting unpublished.

I knew it was an excuse, truth be told I was filled with self-doubt and a tiny bit of fear.

I have a friend who I trust to give me feedback on certain things. She’s that friend who is honest, always tells you the truth (even when your bum looks too big) and she genuinely looks out for your best interests. Some might say she’s a rare find and I would agree. I admire her as a friend.

She’s also a very well qualified experience professional in mental health and I admire her for that too. I have learnt a lot from her.

I had thought and talked about sending the newsletter to her for a while, hoping she looks over it and shares some feedback.

I knew deep down that technically I didn’t need her approval. I believed that my workbook was well written, containing a clear explanation of how to use the worksheet. I knew this because I too am also a professional.

I was also procrastinating on another level with this newsletter. I even wrote this blog about it!!

My delay in sending it across was just in case she didn’t approve. But on hearing about someone being ‘addicted to approval’, it sat with me for the very reason I have just listed above.

But that same night I reminded myself that this is my website, my blog, my coaching practice.

I have asked for feedback before about all three. But it’s only after I’ve gone live with things. Why was this newsletter and worksheet so different? It’s basically me doing what I ‘m doing now but in a different format. Maybe it’s because it was the first one.

I still question my choices and decisions. I'm autistic with ADHD, it’s all part and parcel of my life

Like many of you out there, the first time we try something can be very daunting. We can be unsure, nervous, anxious, fearful and whole host of other emotions. Why? Fear of disapproval of course. In life there are some people we all want approval from, no matter how independent we claim to be. There are still people out there whose opinion matters, but if we continue to seek that approval and then one day it doesn’t come, do we stop what we‘re doing?

And if that’s how we go through life, are we really looking for approval or are we confusing it with permission? Even if we aren’t fully aware of it at the time. And what is it about that person that makes us think that we need It?

And when you get so used to hearing that someone approves, the thought that maybe that person will disapprove, can be very unsettling, especially when your RSD (Rejection Sensitivity Dysphoria) and Imposter Syndrome kicks in.

So as I go through this post and change all the present tense to past tense where appropriate, I write this from a place of knowing.

I went ahead and published that newsletter. There was no negative feedback, nobody came forward to question my professionalism.

In fact, I've sent this workbook to clients lately and they all understand it and use it in their own way, stating that it has been helpful (which was the intention).

Sometimes we need to feel the fear and do it anyway. There are times where the end results outweigh that doubt and fear.

Sometimes the only way you learn to believe and trust yourself, is to feel the fear and do it anyway, because there are times when fear is the only barrier!



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