It is one of the superpowers of codependency. It is born out of desperation to get some sense of control over one’s environment and others. It is often the most convenient, yet most altering, option survivors of discard trauma choose because it works fairly well. You can get some of those core needs
My own journey beyond codependency and the discard trauma has me facing this pretty deeply. I used to mimic people’s expectations, goals, objectives, and mannerisms. I still do to some extent if I am facing an unknown dynamic and situation. It is mostly automatic and I can tell when I’ve started doing it because I go “fuzzy” and my anxiety creeps up.
You also end up lost. This is not a surprising result, honestly. It is that natural outcome when you follow someone else’s BEING map.
Just this morning I realized I had been trying to follow someone else’s map. I had been having anxiety about how I market myself. At first, I assumed it was performance anxiety. I leaned into it.
Usually, if it is performance anxiety, I’d get lighter and more inspired because I’m no longer
Then I noticed how I felt slightly “outside” my body – like I was trying to force myself into a different shape. That’s how I knew I was trying to mimic.
If you’re like me, mimicking has been very valuable to your survival in the narcissistic and abuse dynamic. It was essential to be what they demanded or we’d get discarded.
But now, if your objective is happiness and real healing, you must master being you.
Here’s how I do it (and how I teach my clients to do):
1) Get curious about what feels natural to you. Don’t confuse this with what feels comfortable or normal. It is all about what “fits”. Your body will relax and feel energized when it is in its natural state. Tension is a signal of pressure and being out of congruence with yourself.
2) Listen instead of seeking or analyzing. This is very, very important. Listening means we hold space and see what we sense, hear, or see. We’ll hear our chatter and our programming at first. But behind
3) Allow for spontaneity. This is where you come alive and share yourself with others and the world. It is a space of play and curiosity and freedom. Let go of control and rigidity and fixation on performance. Explore trusting yourself a bit more.
4) Occupy your personal autonomy and power. Say yes when you want to. Say no when you mean it. Be clear. Be simple.
These four steps connect you back to you and start your journey of unfolding your beingness.