Childhood Emotional Neglect: How to Stop Your Fatal Flaw in its Tracks
The Fatal Flaw: A deep-seated feeling that something is wrong with you. You are missing something that other people have. You are living life on the outside, looking in. You don’t quite fit in anywhere.
If you grew up with Childhood Emotional Neglect (CEN), chances are, The Fatal Flaw is at work in your life.
If you pushed your feelings away as a child, you now lack access to them as an adult. You sense deep down that something is missing (it’s your emotions). And your life lacks the richness, connection and meaning that your feelings should be bringing to your life. This is the basic cause of the Fatal Flaw. Most people who have it are not aware of it, and this gives it incredible power.
The 7 Key Effects of Your Fatal Flaw
- You are not in touch with your gut feelings, so you don’t trust your gut (even though for the majority of CEN folks, their gut is most often right).
- It undermines your confidence to take risks.
- It makes you uncomfortable in social situations.
- It keeps many of your relationships at a surface level.
- It makes you question the meaning and purpose of your life.
- It makes you fear that if people get to know you well, they won’t like what they see.
- Therefore you are quite fearful of rejection.
6 Ways to Take Control of Your Fatal Flaw
- Become aware of your Fatal Flaw: This will take away its power.
- Understand that your Fatal Flaw is not a real flaw. It’s only a feeling.
- A feeling can be managed, so start to manage it. Pay attention to when you feel it, and how it affects you.
- Put it into words and tell someone about it.
- Override it every time that you possibly can. Do the opposite of everything your Fatal Flaw tells you to do.
- Start breaking down the wall between you and your feelings. Welcome them as the vital source of information, guidance, and richness that they are (even the painful ones).
Yes, your Fatal Flaw is powerful. But so are you. You have a great deal of personal power that is being drained by your Fatal Flaw.
So today’s the day. Declare war on your Fatal Flaw, and start using your weapons of awareness, your emotions, your intellect, and your words.
This is a battle that you can win. I promise.
To learn more about the Fatal Flaw, what caused it and how to overcome it, see the book Running on Empty: Overcome Your Childhood Emotional Neglect.
A version of this article was originally published on Psychcentral.com and has been republished here with the permission of the author.
Thank you, Janice for your deep and powerful work. Even though I was a social worker for over thirty years and now a spiritual teacher and healer, I’ve always felt I didn’t belong . Something was wrong with me. Having a perpetually sick mother and having to concentrate on being the fixer , my emotional needs went underground. What hurts the most , that even though , I was a helicopter parent to my two sons, I did not really allow them to feel sad or lonely without stepping in to fix it. I see the CEN in my eldest son, in his thirties and it hurts my heart. He is not open to healing right now. I will get your book and continue healing me and hoping he heals too. Ty ty ty