Co-dependence to Independence to Interdependence
We have all understood our life from the ‘outside in’
paradigm, believing that our needs are supplied by something
or someone outside of us. This leaves us in a very precarious
position. It is self-defeating to believe that our happiness,
self-esteem and purpose are anyone else’s job.
If we haven’t claimed our identity, we are defenceless to the effects of life outside of ourselves. Working on emotional maturity, healthy boundary-setting, (please see my eBook ‘How to Understand and Implement Healthy Boundary Function) self-identity and alignment with Life Principles that work allows us to enter a state of independence, which then sets the platform to not only secure private accomplishment, but one that will expand into public accomplishment.
This transformation secures a synergistic expansion of love, happiness and success with others and our environment. Read on to discover the crucial and essential steps of this journey. Ultimately our ‘new world’ that is emerging is one that works with the components of love, trust, warmth and communion.
The days of ‘dog eat dog’, ‘survival of the fittest’, and ‘me versus you’ and ‘I need to succeed with intimidation, victim behaviour or manipulation’ have now become ineffectual, and create great disappointment, delays and pain.
These old states are ego (fear-based) mechanisms that don’t create lasting and solid love, success and happiness. ‘Win-lose’ is no longer the workable trend. ‘Win-win’ is now the goal.
Businesses, love relationships and families in modern times are breaking apart as a result of fear based, ‘low-trust’ conditions. As a species, we are all evolving and sensing the need for healthy and trustworthy connections. No longer will many spouses or employees tolerate the stresses of ‘lack of trust’. The days of ‘put up and shut up’ are becoming obsolete, and are becoming exposed.
No longer can ‘lack of trust’ and ‘lack of connection with others and our environment’ create worthy realities. These old incongruent energy statements are becoming more obvious and more unbearable to live with. It’s time to change!
We are all being called, as part of ‘a new world’, to make the journey from co-dependence to independence to interdependence.
Co-dependence can be termed as: relying on others to provide what we are not providing for ourselves. Obviously as new born babies we are extremely co-dependent. We have no ability to provide safety, survival needs and emotional sustenance for ourselves. In our co-dependent stages of life we are totally vulnerable and all of our trust is placed on the actions and resources of others. We on our own are powerless.
Independence can be termed as: being self-reliant, self-empowered and capable of providing our own needs, emotionally, mentally, physically and spiritually. As we grow older we begin making progress towards independence. In our independent stages of life we build purpose, direction and trust for ourselves. We are powerful within our own energy and know that we can rely on and provide for ourselves.
Interdependence can be termed as: being a whole and balanced person who is able to share with and join in the healthy resources of life and others. This facilitates an even greater expansion in life than the independent stage, as we now have unlimited access to even more love, success and happiness than we could have provided for ourselves.
So you see... THIS IS THE GOAL – to create powerful, healthy interdependence.
The journey of co-dependence to independence to interdependence is a very necessary journey and each stage is necessary. The end goal cannot be achieved without the building processes of the stages preceding them.
In other words, we must leave behind our co-dependent behaviour to step up into independence, and we must have a solid sense of independence to be able to function effectively in interdependence. Having said this, it isn’t necessary to be solely independent before working on interdependence. These two stages can be achieved simultaneously. It certainly is a truth the more healthy your emotional independence operates (as opposed to pure practical independence) the easier it will be to connect to healthy interdependence.
Co-dependence is an aspect of ourselves that can be difficult to overcome. It is an extremely powerless state that has been our understanding of life for centuries.
When we are acting co-dependently, we set ourselves up for a lose/win or lose/lose situation. Our energies and effects are focused on other people and situations rather than ourself. It is easy to think they have the problems. But in reality they often don’t have the problems because we are busy fixing and controlling everything for them. They are reaping the ‘rewards’ (a life without having to take responsibility for problems) and we feel abandoned, unsupported, victimised, angry and distressed. And maybe we are helping these people so much that we are enabling their addictions, immature or abusive behaviour, and creating an energy exchange which helps them stay sick.
The biggest problem is: as a co-dependent we ALWAYS LOSE, because we become empty, powerless and unable to plot our own course independent of others and life. By trying to control aspects outside of ourselves, we end up obsessing and creating over-involvement and become emotionally, mentally, physically and spiritually controlled by the life details or people we are obsessing about.
In order to create a life that works it is essential to outgrow our co-dependent states as much as possible.
How many of these are applicable to you?
We can all be guilty of these traits. When we are, we have lost a connection to ourselves by handing our power over to life and others. No longer are we capable of sustaining our needs and looking after ourselves, we have forfeited this ‘worthiness and trust’ to conditions on the outside - conditions that we have no control over, and no right to control! Co-dependency fosters insecurity, anxiety, depression and in many cases leads to premature death. In its advanced stages the disease of co-dependency is deadly. I believe co-dependency is the greatest emotionally destructive factor in humankind.
Most people don’t act co-dependently when things are GOOD! (When life and others are supplying their needs). Most people act CODEPENDENTLY when the going gets tough! (When life and others aren’t supplying their needs).
We can all blame life and situations for throwing us into turmoil – but the truth is these challenging times are only EXPOSING the lack of self-resources and self-belief we had on-line in the first place. If ‘other people bring you down’ – your state of ‘down’ was lying just under the surface before the event occurred!
THEREFORE – the number ONE priority is to stop being just a ‘fair weather person’ and know that you can ‘hold it together in a storm’. These stormy times are inevitable (they are a part of life) and through these times we gain enormous confidence and resources to become self-empowered. These times are a gift. The irony is the more we deal with them, the fewer storms come.
Your REAL job is to build your character. And then all of life will follow.
Another essential truth of life is:
It is not what people and situations have done to us that created our agony. It was our decision to create the agony as a reaction to these people and situations that have tormented us. I understand and empathise that as children – YES we were defenceless. We didn’t have developed emotional intelligence or healthy boundary functions. However, as adults we have the power to make new choices. To make other peoples’ emotional weaknesses OUR emotional weaknesses is self-defeating.
Here are some further questions to consider in regard to co-dependency.
Many of us use and think co-dependent statements, such as:
All of these statements are victim statements that create powerlessness in situations.
Let’s look at an alternative way to live simply by affirming that we always have the power to CHOOSE our realities:
If you catch yourself using victim (powerless statements) make a decision and a CHOICE!
Independence is essential. Your life is your job. Everyone
else’s life is their job. Please see Inner
Foundation of Trust to gain information as to why it is
so important to have a solid and consistent sense of self.
Part of a healthy independent foundation is having a mature boundary function (Please see my eBook ‘How to Understand and Implement Healthy Boundary Function’). There is no need to allow anything to penetrate your inner sense of self unless you choose to. This is why some people get extremely distressed (and even obsessive) over a particular person or event, whereas another could see it ‘for what it is’, do whatever was appropriate and in their authentic control (make a decision that applied to themselves) without wasting emotional energy on it by obsessing over the unknown or trying to control the uncontrollable (a dynamic that was outside their power of influence).
Be very clear your emotional energy is best spent within the life-affirming decisions of your own life. It isn’t productive to burn it up on things outside of you that you have no control over. This doesn’t mean you don’t have feelings or a conscience. Quite the contrary. By having a healthy boundary function, you recognise where you can help, how to help in empowered ways, and you make a decision that creates a win/win opportunity for everyone involved. No longer do you fuel yourself and someone else’s dysfunctions and insecurities by reacting in unhealthy ways.
Achieving independence means releasing yourself from the need for other people to validate your sense of self. I’ll explain with an example...
Not long ago my son and I had an interaction. He had spent money on a social event and hadn’t saved enough money to have petrol in his car to get to work. My sense of self on this matter is – I am living a principle centered life (non-co-dependent) where I no longer fix his ‘irresponsible mistakes’ for him and I don’t enable him to be irresponsible. When he asked if he could borrow my car (he knew my take on lending him money), I calmly and clearly said “No.” When he asked me why, I stated my declaration of truth on the matter quietly and calmly. He ranted and raved a bit which I totally ignored. An hour later we were having tea together as if nothing had happened and he’d rung one of his friends to organise a lift. After he finished work we had pleasant talks about other unrelated issues.
In the past I would have acted co-dependently. I would have
argued and been totally dismayed if he didn’t understand
my point of view. One of the biggest lessons I have learnt in
life is: “It’s not important for other people
to ‘get it.’ It’s important that I ‘get
So you can see the old pattern would have created a Lose/Win – if I had given in and fixed his problem for him with my own resources, or a Lose/Lose where we both would have lost because I was enabling him to be irresponsible. And what’s more we could have argued for two days about my ‘Disbelief of His Irresponsible and Thoughtless Behaviour’ and his version ‘What an Unsupportive Mother I am’.
Instead my decisions: 1) Knowing where I stood, 2) Stating it with no guilt, fear, explanations or justifications and 3) Detaching from him ‘getting it’ or validating it - created a Win/Win, not in the sense of a marvelous synergistic transformation (which is possible in interdependent problem solving) but most definitely a Win/Win. My resource and principle centre was not exploited and I was implementing by example mature and responsible behaviour, which was to his advantage.
Part of being a healthy independent with a sense of inner self is escaping the need for the quick emotional fix. Our co-dependent nature wants relief, validation (to be understood) and results immediately. This is why we go in harder trying to make it happen. This is a function of the ego that is immature (scared) and perceives scarcity. “If I don’t get it now, there may not be more later on, or someone else is going to get it.”
Healthy independence KNOWS that if we live calmly with an inner foundation of principles that life will bit by bit, slowly and surely respond and match these principles. By not being attached to timing, we are simply attached to doing the right thing – the thing that works, and trusting the process to unfold in its own time accordingly. Healthy independence realises that the old emotional and co-dependent behaviours create temporary relief at best, disasters and blows ups at worst, and are simply band-aid attempts that don’t have durable results.
As unlimited beings and incredibly powerful creators, we have
an ability to create a synergistic
exchange with life and others that far exceeds the love,
success and happiness that we or another party could solely
create. In fact when two forces come together (even if they
are opposing) a new force can be born - a third solution that
grants each party an even better win than was previously available.
When we open our minds and our hearts to this, it’s exciting.
Why? Because the possibilities are limitless.
This goal creates a necessity to be open to other people, other situations and other ways. If we have a firm sense of self we can listen and seek to understand another point of view without the fear of being overtaken or attacked. It doesn’t mean we have to agree, but it means we have to listen and empathise with this person’s feelings on a matter.
Most people don’t listen. They are busy pushing their experience, their framework and their beliefs over the top of another person’s frame of reference. This comes from the inbuilt fear of needing to be understood – which is what every person truly wants. Naturally this pushing creates a push back where the other person is trying to do the same. In this state of non-evolved problem-solving the most convincing, intimidating or manipulative person will win. The person that backs down will lose. This Win/Lose dynamic destroys potential for trust, teamwork and connection, and seriously undermines relationships in all walks of life.
The golden key to creating healthy interdependence is: understand yourself without the need for others to understand you, and then seek to understand them.Let’s start with the first step...
By leading the way, you can allow the other individual to feel open and trusted. you'll hear the heart of their concerns rather than defensive and projecting logical arguments, by being genuinely interested in their feelings and perceptions with empathy. You don’t have to agree with them, you simply need to honour that they are also a human beings with real feelings and emotions and are entitled to their view of life.
I say to my son, “I don’t have to believe in everything you do. But this doesn’t mean that I don’t always believe in you.” By saying this he feels supported, understood and trusted, and in turn he trusts me and shares life issues and feelings openly with me. I am blessed to experience our connection as a ‘team.’
An interesting and powerful miracle occurs when you genuinely and openly listen and emotionally validate another individual’s concerns and what is on their mind. In almost every case they will then allow you to do the same. Then as if there is a force all of its own, a higher solution appears. This solution is more than a compromise - it is a greater reality than either one of you could have created if you were defending your own frame of reference and trying to disagree with the other. And a spectacular Win/Win occurs for both parties. Trust, communion, love, respect and teamwork are created.
On of the most powerful statements you can make to another
person who is challenging you in your personal life or in business
“I truly want to understand what your concerns are and know what the problems are from your point of view. I am here to genuinely listen.”
Then to do this with no other reason than to genuinely understand and connect. This is not a tool to use to manipulate others to get your own way. If you are stuck in a Win/Lose framework you'll keep creating people in your life who leave and don’t ‘want to play anymore’ no matter how much you try to conceal the true motives.
Please note it takes courage and a high level of emotional maturity and calm healthy boundaries to really take this journey. Make it a goal and apply the awareness and processes to your life and you'll notice spectacular differences.
We all require the energetic support of life and others to really, really, really shine – and others in the world require our love and support to really, really, really shine. This communion and teamwork is the way to create a life of spectacular love and inspiration. This is the truth and the necessary shift of our new world. We all have the power to assist this shift. Please do it with all your heart!!
Sign-up to my FREE no-obligation Empowered Life and Love Newsletter, granting you profound information, empowerment and assistance weekly and receiveHow to Create Love The Secret Revealed
In this Free eBook you will receive:
Self Empowerment Articles
Men In Love Relationships
NPD 101 Quiz
Online Store - Home
Melanie's Books - Home
- Breaking the Chains Of Painful Love
- Take Back Your Power
Programs & Services Home
- Quanta Freedom™ Healing
- Quanta Freedom™ Healing Philosophy
- Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Program
eBooks - Home
- Claim Your True Self eBooks
- Recovery from Narcissistic Abuse eBooks
- Create Real Love eBooks
- Unlock the Power Within You eBooks
eCourses - Home
- Empowered Self eCourse
- Empowered Love Creation eCourse
- Empowered Living eCourse
New Life Newsletter
Empowered Love & Life Newsletter
Empowered Relationships Blog
Empowered Love Radio
Melanie on Facebook
Melanie on Twitter
Melanie on Youtube