Pain Doesn't Make You Undeserving, Ever.

Updated: Apr 18

I'm learning a lot about how I cope with rejection, heartbreak and pain. Turns out my strategy hasn't been the most helpful. It's time to deconstruct this pattern and switch things up, before I continue living a life that I can't remember huge pieces of.


Alright fam. If this is the only blog post of mine that you've read, you're in for a bit of a doozy. I'm been battling with how to write this piece for weeks now. Stay with me.


Everyone has their coping methods. I have several, but there is one that has been stirring me up for a while now.


Here's an example of what I mean by coping methods. One of my reactions to pain is to involve myself in big projects. I started my blog right after a long-term relationship ended. I co-founded Bridges of Hope when I was struggling to get out of bed and go to high school classes and commitments.


Ahhh ...high school. Sometimes I like to close my eyes and pretend that I had to full "High School Musical" version of the secondary school experience. But, friends, I really did not. And it's triggered one of my biggest coping strategies.


My most significant reaction to pain is forgetting. I don't even know when it started, but I'm really good at coping with negative events and being resilient after the fact because I let it all slip out of my mind.

All I do before I forget it all, is blame myself and keep the memory of my role in it as a reminder of why I'm not worthy.


I first noticed this habit when I lost my first love. Those ALWAYS sting, eh? I decided to write everything about our relationship that I could think of right after the breakup so that I wouldn't continue to let the pieces go.


Now, despite my writing, all I remember from it is what I did wrong. Why do I forget the good parts and have these lingering emotions that I don't understand?


A couple years later, after a close-friendship-turned-relationship-turned-strangers situation all within one month, I found myself being slandered by him daily. People cope differently and, unfortunately, this person chose lashing out as their solution.


I forget about what our friendship was like & how amazing our connection was because it reminds me of how things fell apart. Words like toxic, psychotic and over-dramatic still haunt me everyday. I had my lessons to learn, but my character was being overly defamed - in public, every single day. And that's all I remember about him.


Flash forward to last June. I went to Langdon Hall for high tea with my mom. That is a very special place to me, because I met a woman named Rosalyn there.


Rosalyn supported my family through prayer for years but I first met her in person there two years ago. A week after I met her, she passed away. I found myself unable to remember the things she told me that afternoon when I visited Langdon Hall a year after her death.


Getting the idea now? It's FAR from intentional and extremely slippery to navigate.


Friends, I think that my way of "forgiving and forgetting" is simply forgetting. Why? Because, on some subconscious level, I might just fear that I deserve it.

WOAH. That's big. Stay with me here.


When someone told you that you did something wrong and treated you poorly in the process, did you think their treatment towards you was valid because you've messed up before?


When you had a bad fight and lashed out - resulting in your friend not speaking to you anymore - did you think that one night qualified them leaving because you've lost other people in the past?


Look - we all make mistakes. But what I'm talking about is getting so used to being treated poorly and going through pain that we think that it must be us. "It's my fault, or else it wouldn't keep happening to me. And because of the amount of crap I've been through, it will never end and I'll simply never be happy."


Sound like you?


Personally, I forget what hurts me because it's a reminder of my fear that I'm not good enough. "All of the ill treatment and painful moments I've had in my life are just a direct reflection of the fact that I am not deserving of a happy life," I think often.


I forget what hurts me because I am afraid to continue going through challenges that prove I am everything that they've said about me. I feel like I am nothing now without those that I've lost.

This may sound like you. I get it more than you know. They said you're a loner so you forget moments when you were left alone. They said you're toxic so you forget about the nights that someone said you weren't acting kindly. It all reminds you that you're afraid to be undeserving.


But here's something that you and I both need to start drilling in our brains. Bad things happen to good people every single day. This is a part of life for EVERYONE.


The way you are treated and the sad things that you go through have nothing to do with you being underserving or unworthy of happiness. You are absolutely no exception.



What does this mean for you? This means that you can let it go.


You don't need to ignore the pain in your life because it says NOTHING about who you are. Take the lessons that you learned, forgive those who wronged you, accept this as part of your journey and detach it from how you value yourself.

Easier said than done, I know. BUT I'm working on undoing this pattern. I have to allow myself to forgive myself and those who harmed me (if applicable) before I forget. Doing this will allow me to not lose huge pieces of my life just because I beat myself up about them. I might even view it differently after this: more encouraged and strong because of it.


Friend, this is a hard thing to understand and put in practice. Be patient while you approach it and try this exercise every time you feel drawn to it.




Your Pain Your Worth Exercise

After you write 10 things that you're grateful for, write down a situation in your past that upset you within the past week in your journal. Reflect on the following:

  1. Is there someone involved in this situation who I need to forgive to offer myself freedom? (Yes/No)

  2. If no, skip to #5

  3. If yes, put yourself in their shoes. Why do you think they harmed you?

  4. Write down an apology to yourself from their perspective. What do you think their apology would sound like?

  5. Pretend your best friend is going through your situation and explains it to you. Write down what they would say to you about it.

  6. Pretend your best friend just told you that they think it's their fault because everyone always hurts them/leaves & they must deserve it at this point.

i. Write down evidence that supports this point of view.

i. Write down evidence that contradicts this point of view.


Let's apply this exercise to my situation with Rosalyn for example.


  1. Is there someone involved in this situation who I need to forgive to offer myself freedom? No.

  2. If no, skip to #5

  3. If yes, put yourself in their shoes. Why do you think they harmed you?

  4. Pretend your best friend is going through your situation and explains it to you. Write down what they would say to you about it.

I lost Rosalyn two years and I can't remember the simplest things that she told me. I know she had a beautiful love story with her husband Charles and I'm so frustrated that I can't remember any of it. It was so impactful to meet her and I'm sad that I lost her. I don't want to forget her. I think I'm just always going to lose the people that I care about. I think I must be particularly attracted to pain.

5. Pretend your best friend just told you that they think it's their fault because everyone always hurts them/leaves & they must deserve it at this point.

i. Write down evidence that supports this point of view.

They've lost people before. They have had my fair share of pain in their life, probably more than others.

i. Write down evidence that contradicts this point of view

This situation is completely different than all of the other struggles they have been through. It's not fair to connect them like that. This person is authentic, honest and kind. Bad things happen to good people, but, that does not mean that it has anything to do with what they deserve. It's simply a part of life.



Give this practice a try, friends! You may notice that it's time to start changing this pattern. It's time for me to do the same.


Click this link to download this resource & sign up for #ShutUpSaturdays, my BRAND NEW email campaign about shutting up the mean voice in our heads!


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