Hello and welcome to We Need To Talk with Kris Godinez podcast. I’m your host Kris Godinez, licensed professional counselor. I help people get out of, and stay out of, toxic relationships. This podcast is for informational and educational purposes only the views and opinions stated herein are mine and mine alone. They do not represent the ACA, the APA or any other therapist for that matter.
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Okay, so a little bit of housekeeping. So, I looked into the cruise and oh my freaking god, it is so freakin expensive. No way in hell am I going to do that! So instead, I’m going to do a meet and greet in Clearwater Florida, Clearwater, St. Petersburg, right in that area right there. So, we’ll be doing a meet and greet in Clearwater / St. Petersburg on December 2. We’re going to be doing a meet and greet in Vancouver. May 20th. Yep. So, if you’re in the Vancouver area in Vancouver, BC, I will be there May 20th. If you are in Florida, I will be there in December on the second. So those are the two places and I’m going to be able to bring the one with me to the Florida one. So, I’m very, very excited about that. So, there is not anything else I need to let you guys know. I can’t think of anything. Okay. All right.
So, last week, somebody asked me to talk or, you know, give my opinion on the whole murders in Idaho thing, and I haven’t had a chance to do that. Until now. So, okay, so basically, you know, I’m not diagnosing, I don’t know, Bryan Kohberger, I have not diagnosed him. I have not seen him as a client. I you know, but here’s what I think.
Just based on everything I’m reading, he’s not making himself look innocent. Let’s put it that way. That’s a good place to start. A New York Times reporter had gone through his social media posts and things like that. And he said things like, “I look into my family’s eyes, and I feel nothing, like nothing. And I know I’m a jerk, and I don’t care.” You know, that kind of thing. So, he knows there’s something wrong. He knows there’s…he’s not behaving normally. But he has no remorse about it. And when he looks into his family’s eyes, he feels nothing, no love, no hate, no nothing. Period. And that’s, that’s, that’s a red flag. That’s kind of a concern. So, there was that, um, basically, everything that he’s been doing is not screaming, “I’m innocent!” It’s seriously… not from the pings on the cellphone, stalking or, you know, apparently stalking this house. Because he started going to Moscow, Idaho, around the house since July. And if you don’t know anybody who’s living there, why would you do that? So that doesn’t look good. The sheath being found in the bedroom where one of the murders was committed with DNA on it that has linked to him also not looking really good for him. And then going back to his family’s house in Pennsylvania and thoroughly cleaning the car, with surgical gloves inside and out, and then taking garbage out at four o’clock in the morning and putting it in the neighbor’s bin as opposed to his family’s bin also not looking really good.
The statement he made… now this is… the statement he made wasn’t “I’m innocent.” ”I’m looking forward to being exonerated.” is what he said. That’s not the statement of somebody who’s being wrongly accused. Let’s just be clear about that! Healthy, normal people when they’re accused of a heinous, heinous, violent, nasty crime…they’re not just calm, cool, collected, “Oh, I’m looking forward to being exonerated” They’re like, “I’m innocent! What the hell? I didn’t do this!” This is… that requires emotion! That requires a connection to empathy! That requires a connection to how you’re feeling! And if you’re dealing with somebody who is not feeling, who doesn’t have normal emotions. They’re going to be logical about it, they’re not going to be emotional about it.
So, I do think it’s very interesting that he got his doctorate in criminology, oftentimes, what I see is people either go for… well, people, people who have that bent, either go for criminology, or they go for psychology, and they’re trying to figure themselves out, or they’re trying to figure out how to work the system. So again, I’m not making any diagnosis. I’m just saying he’s not acting like an innocent person, let’s just put it that way. Um, the other thing, too, to think about is, and there’s a couple of things I want to touch on, before I dive into the topic of gratitude.
Now that they have his DNA, now that we have DNA that we can connect, my bet is that every single cold case in any area where this kid lived, is going to be reopened. And they’re going to be looking to test the DNA against that to see what’s what. Generally, not always, but generally, when somebody is going to become a serial killer, or somebody does a crime like that, they don’t just start at the top of the chain, they work their way up. So generally, now, you know, if I were the authorities in Pennsylvania, I would start comparing every single cold case that fits that where this person was, that’s what I would do. So that’s my thought on that.
Now, the other question that people have had, is the roommate. So, people are like, Why did the roommate just shut the door and go back to sleep? Okay, a couple of things. Apparently, this house was kind of a party house; you know, people were in and out all the time.
And they had all out being normal college students. And the likelihood is, is that they were, you know, under the influence of something, you know, drugs, alcohol, whatever, I don’t know. But if somebody’s in an altered state, you’re not thinking clearly, you’re not like, oh, my gosh, there’s a burglar, or there’s a stranger in my house. I need to call the police. If you’re out of it. And I’m not saying because I don’t know, I don’t know. I’m just saying that this is what I’m. What’s the word I’m looking for? I’m taking the information I have and kind of going. I wonder what happened. So, my guess is, is that she opened the door, she saw the guy slammed the door shut. He probably thought she called the cops and booked it out of there. So, he didn’t have a chance to get her, which is probably what he was going to do next, and get whatever evidence he left behind. So, she goes back to sleep calls the police hours later. And he, in the meantime, had come back to drive by the house. And the pinging on the phone is showing that, so yeah. So there that is.
The previous posts that The New York Times reporter dug up, I thought were very, very telling. The fact that the behavior has not been what you would expect of a person who has been accused of a horrible, horrible crime. And the terminology he used when he was extradited wasn’t “I didn’t do this. I’m fighting this!” and none of that. It was like, “Oh, no, take me back. You know, I’m looking forward to being exonerated.” What? Yeah, something is rotten in the state of Denmark. Let’s just put it that way.
So anyway, speculating, that’s what it is. I’m speculating about what was going on with the roommate. So, if she was in an altered state, yeah, you know, if you’re, if you’re drunk, and you’re not thinking clearly, you’re going to lock the door and go back to sleep if you’re that drunk, you know. So, but he probably thought she called the police, and I’m sure she would have been next. I’m sure he would have killed her too if he had the chance. So, he panicked, and he left because he thought she’d already called the police. So, and I’m sure with him driving back. You know, he was probably going, “Wait a minute, why aren’t the cops here?” And he was probably debating whether to go ahead and go in and finish it and then decided not to and turned around and went home. So anyway, that’s it.
And yes, the eyes do tell you a lot. Absolutely. 110% When I was working at the homeless shelter, oh my goodness, we had a lot of sex offenders in the drug and alcohol groups that I was running. And there was this one guy, you looked into his eyes, and it was terrifying. Dead, dead, dead eyes. Dead, like hatred, maybe. But no other emotion. I mean, it was just like… it was like a shark. It was like this was the one client I had that I never turned my back on. And I always made sure that my peer support Rocky was in the room with me because I just did not trust this guy. One of the other therapists was like, oh, yeah, you can see the fires of hell burning in his eyes.
I was kind of like, yeah, that’s exactly what That’s I see. So, psychopaths tend to have very dead eyes it’s just it’s pure…. It is the closest thing to evil incarnate you will ever come across. I swear to God. And it’s so funny because every once in a while, I get people that are like, oh, you know, go to this wonderful job in the correctional facility. And I’m like, no, no, thank you. I came pretty close to that work. in the homeless shelter. No, thank you. I never felt safe when I had to deal with those people that I knew were 100% psychopaths. Absolutely. So yeah, their eyes, the eyes tell you everything and how they look at people or don’t look at people. That’s something else I thought was interesting is that when he came in, he did not make eye contact with his public defender at all. Period. Didn’t even look at her. And it was a woman. So, I thought that was interesting. So yeah, yeah. So anyway, there’s that. Just based on behavior. You know what I’m saying? So, there it is. And, like I said, I’m not diagnosing. I’ve not seen this person. This is speculation, but it’s educated speculation. Let’s put you that way. So anyway, there it is.
Okay. All right. Okay, so let’s dive into the topic today. So, what is the role of gratitude in the healing process? So unfortunately, there’s been a lot of pseudo-psychology places that are preaching this, like the metaphysical yada, yada, yada, artsy fartsy, out there kind of stuff. That’s like, everything has to be lovely. And sunshine and roses and unicorns farts. No, no, it doesn’t. So, gratitude is important in healing. It absolutely is, no matter what is going on, whether it’s healing from an addiction, whether it’s healing from abuse, whether it’s healing from anxiety, or depression or anything, gratitude, and what’s the word I’m looking for? Mmm, hmm. Positivity, but not toxic positivity are important to healing because if you don’t have positivity at all, it’s just gloom and doom, right? But you also don’t want to go to the opposite extreme and be like, everything’s fine. Because it’s not. The truth of the matter is, we had really awful things happen to us absolutely. 110%. And because it’s an and world, and there is a light at the end of the tunnel. And it’s not a freight train, sometimes it feels like it’s a freight train, but it’s not. So, it’s reframing that is a part of gratitude is reframing and trying to find the good in the awful.
So when we’re in the middle of it, let me be clear, when we’re in the middle of it, when we are fighting for survival, no, you’re not going to be sunshine and roses, you’re not because it is doo, doo. At that point in time. It is. Because you’re dealing with the ex, you’re dealing with the custody battle, you’re dealing with the lawyers, you’re dealing with the emails, you’re dealing with everything and it is like this constant Reign of Terror, oh, really is the way to put it. So, when you’re in the middle of it, it is really hard to see the good of anything. But that’s intentional on the part of the abuser think about it. When they do, their devalue and discard. They literally attempt a soul kill, like literally, and they try to make anything and everything that we ever loved. Either hate us like the kids, or you know, turning the kids against us. That’s part of their thing. Or they attack the very things that initially they were like, oh, you’re fabulous, you’re great, I love your laugh, I love your this, I love your that, I love this element. Suddenly they’re doing the devalue and discard, And it’s all well, you’re too this, and you’re too that, and your laugh is this, and your thoughts are that, and it’s tearing you down and tearing you apart. And they’re intentional on that they… it’s a soul kill, basically. That’s… they want you dead. DED…dead! They do. They absolutely want you dead… So, when we’re in the middle of it, we start self-doubting. And it’s so hard to remember who the hell we really are. When this person who we loved, who we thought was our soulmate, or, you know, perfect person. Oh my god, they’re a perfect match. Oh my god… You know, this person that we love is now telling us how awful and horrible and terrible we are. And we take it personally, and we think it’s us…raise your hand. How many of us thought it was us? Almost all of us thought it was us.
So, until we get to the point where we can go wait a minute person over here. Abuser, you’re talking about yourself, dude or do that, you know, we start thinking it’s us and our worlds just, oh my god, they’re destroyed. So, when we come out of one of these relationships, we’re questioning everything. Am I a good person? Do I have a good sense of humor? Is it okay to laugh? Is it okay to like, what I like, oh my gosh, can I go buy nice things for myself? Because every time we bought something for ourselves, what did they do? They would make us wrong, why didn’t you buy me that? You need to buy me that you needed to… How dare you do something for yourself? Right? So, we come out of it, and we’re completely destroyed. So, this is where the positivity comes in to help us start rebuilding, okay, and not toxic positivity. So, here’s the deal. It’s like walking that fine line of going.
This abuse was suck. So, you embrace the suck. It’s an AA saying. You embrace the suck? Yes, it absolutely sucked. And life is still worth living. Do you see where I’m going with that? So even though this area over here sucked really hard, life is still worth living. So, it’s kind of like in the Schiraldi book. So again, I’m telling you guys, listen to me. Now, believe me, later, go get the Schiraldi book, The Self-Esteem Workbook. So, there’s a section in there where it’s like, even though this sucked, nonetheless, life is still worth living. So, it’s the even though, nonetheless. And that’s really important for us to start doing. And I think the reason why it’s hard for us is because if we came from a family of origin that was disordered, right, they are very much disordered people are very much black and white thinking and it’s very much all nothing good. That black, white, there’s no gray, there’s no rainbow of colors. There’s no nothing. It’s like it’s all has to be this, or it has to be that, and there’s nothing in the middle. Well, that’s not true. Life is a lot of in the middle.
So, we have to get out of that thinking of just because this was horrible and awful. Well, everything is horrible and awful. And I find a lot of survivors get stuck in that it’s like this happened, and therefore everything is awful. No, no, even though this sucks. That person sucks. They’re awful. They’re horrible. They’re terrible. They’re doing their dance with their attorney, and they’re, you know, doing whatever. Okay, even though, nonetheless, there is going to be an end to it. At some point, there is! Nonetheless life is worth living. Does it suck sometimes? Hell yeah. Oh, god. Yeah. Oh, absolutely. Yeah. Because these jerks will try to make your world as miserable as possible. Don’t let them! Now that does not mean that you get stuck in the positive, toxic positivity, which is everything has to be great all the time. No, it doesn’t. No, it doesn’t. When things suck, they suck.
Like, okay, how do I explain? Like, okay, like, if something happens in my day, and it sucks, you know, like, I find out that somebody’s got an illness or, you know, somebody that I really, you know, liked and respected, lost their spouse or, you know, things like things like that. That sucks. That sucks. Absolutely. And I allow myself to go, Oh, God, that really sucks, and process the grief, the anger, the sadness, the whatever is going on. But I don’t stay stuck in it forever. It might take a few hours. But you know, but it’s like you process it, you allow, you allow, you allow it’s like you are, you are the sky, the emotions and the suck are the weather. They’re going to come in. Yeah, allow them to do whatever they need to do your process, whatever you need to process, and you let them blow right back out. Absolutely. And realize it’s going to sound like Annie, the sun will come out tomorrow, so it might suck today. But the sun will come out. It will. The sun will come out tomorrow. It’s true. The sun does always come out. It might take some time. Especially if you live in Oregon. Oh my god. 100 days no sunshine, what the hell, but the sun eventually does come out. And it’s kind of like, even though things are sucky right now. It will get better, and that’s hard to hang on to, guys. I’m not going to lie to you. Because when you’re dealing with an abuser who is constantly barraging you with you know. Oh, and that’s what I wanted to tell you, too. If somebody is constantly barraging you with motion after motion, filing after filing, and your attorney is not counter-filing, they need to be counter-filing because it’s going to cost them money. And if they’re just filing thinking, hahaha, I’m gonna make you pay all the stuff, you count or file, and you make them responsible for your attorney’s fees. So, talk to your attorneys about that. Of course, I am not an attorney, and I play one on TV. But in speaking to my buddy Brent, that’s where he suggested, so I was like, this is brilliant. I like that. And it’s funny how many times they finally stopped doing that once they realize there’s a financial that’s going to get them.
So. all right, so let’s talk about gratitude. So, gratitude heals us, it gives us hope, basically. And the whole thing about healing is understanding there is hope there is life after these Jack wagons there is, you know, there is a whole big, beautiful world out there is. And it’s finding the little things, like literally the little things. So, like, when I was going through my really deep depression, when I was having to deal with my family of origin, I would literally go out and try to find nature. So, the moon, Wow, beautiful. Gosh, that’s gorgeous. What a pretty moon, even though all these horrible things are going on in my family of origin. And even though I feel suicidal, wow, the moon or, you know, hey, comedy makes me laugh. There’s a reason to live. You know what I’m saying? It’s like, the reason to live is to find the humor. So, you know, at least for me when I was going through that with my family of origin, so it’s, it’s the little things in life, it’s like taking a walk and noticing the sunshine or the beautiful weather or even right now it’s raining and cold outside. But for Arizona, this is kind of like a treat in a weird way because we never get any rain or cold because we’re Arizona. And of course, it’s John, and I are just like, oh, absorb, absorb, absorb, because, in the summertime, it’s going to be 120.
So, you know, it’s like enjoying it and finding the beauty in it. So, the abusers are usually, especially if they’re the covert type, they can see something beautiful and find the one thing that’s wrong with it. And they do all the time. And it’s like, how dare you enjoy this beautiful sunset and blah, blah, blah, blah, you know, it’s like, you’ll be looking at a beautiful sunset and all the different colors. And invariably, a narcissist or a covert narcissist will be like, oh, yeah, well, it’s caused by the smog. Can you just not enjoy this gorgeous? What is wrong with you? Oh, wait a minute, I wrote a whole book on that. Yeah, I know what’s wrong with you. Do you see where I’m going with that? So, they will, it’s like, for us? It’s like, we’ve got to find the beauty in the dog doo doo. Basically, we do. Until we can get out. Does that make sense?
So, it’s finding the little things, and it’s finding things that make us smile. So, like, one time when I was in Los Angeles, in the middle of this huge city, I’m sitting there on the steps contemplating life. And I was watching a snail. And the snail was just going about its business. And I was like, little snail, you’re really kind of cool. Oh, interesting. You know, and just getting lost in that and enjoying what little nature I could find in Los Angeles. Do you see where I’m going with that? And just kind of like, contemplating nature and the universe. And, you know, it’s like, look, life goes on, we’re not going to be stuck in this forever. It feels like it when we’re in the middle of it. Oh my god, does it feel like it? But it’s like going, okay? Even though nonetheless, even though nonetheless, and you find beauty where you can. You do.
One of the other things I used to like to do to when I was really struggling with depression is I would go to the art museums. And I would just enjoy the art. Just be like, you know, okay, I’m dealing with all of this heavy stuff for my family. And at the time, I was single, and you know, and I would just go to the art museum and just get lost in the paintings and just really enjoy the art come to the conclusion. I am not a modern art person. I’m really not. But it was still fun. It was so cool to do it and kind of to figure out what I like and what I don’t like. Because that’s something that abusers take away from us too, is that they will be like, No, you like this. No, you can’t listen to this. My dad did that. He would not allow me to listen to rock and roll music because he said it was the devil’s music. Boy. So, you know, and as soon as I got away from him, what did I do? I started listening to rock and roll. So, you know, it’s like you find the joy where you can, so gratitude does play a large part in healing. It reduces stress.
So, this is on psychology today. Does gratitude reduce stress? Yes, people who are grateful feel less pain, less stress and suffer less insomnia than and have stronger immune systems than people who don’t have gratitude. They experience healthier relationships and do better academically and professionally overall, and it can boost both your mental and your physical health. So, this is true because think about it, where our thoughts go, our body follows. So, remember the amygdala, okay? So, if we start having a stressful or a threatening thought, the amygdala lights up tells the hippocampus hypothalamus, oh my god, we’re in danger. Stress hormone cortisol gets released, we’re getting ready to fight, run away, freeze or give in to whatever’s threatening us. So even if you’re just sitting there, and you’re imagining, well, what’s that was my abuser going to do now? Oh, I bet he’s going to, or she’s going to do this, that, and the other thing it did it did it in the next thing, you know, your heart rate is going to go up, your blood pressure is going to go through the roof, your body’s going to start tensing up because you’re getting ready for battle. And all you did was have a thought. That’s it. So, what we have to do is be mindful of what we are thinking. So, when our brain goes, Oh, they’re going to do this, this, this, and that. Okay, stop, stop. They haven’t done it yet. We already know how they are. We already know what they might do. We already have a plan in case they do that. And I am not going to go there. Because I do not want to stroke out. Thank you very much. Do you see where I’m going with that?
And we’ve got to be mindful of it. Because our brains are, what’s the word I’m looking for. Our brains are wired to look for danger. It’s normal for us to look for danger. It’s how we’ve stayed safe for millennia, you know, but the problem is, is that our brains get stuck in Periscope. But where’s the danger? Where’s the danger? Where’s the danger? Where’s the danger? Where’s the danger? And if we don’t see anything dangerous, our brains will then go, Okay, well, what if, you know, and it’ll create this whole scenario. And the next thing you know, like I said, you’re like, you know, and ready for battle one way or the other, and it hasn’t even happened. So, it’s great to plan. Don’t get me wrong. It’s great to plan. It is in fact, I encourage it. It’s kind of like write it out. What Okay, they’re going to do this. What are you going to do? They’re going to do that. What are you going to do? They’re going to do this. What are you going to do? Okay, great. We have a plan. Now, let it go.
That’s where most people go. They don’t want to let it go. Oh, my God, this is keeping me safe. Well, yes. And no, it’s keeping you safe in that you know what to do. But you got to pry your fingers off of it because you don’t need it yet. You know, it’s just like, even Warriors don’t carry their guns are their weapons 24/7 They do it when they’re about to go into battle. Does that make sense? So, you got to let stuff go. You got to let stuff go. So um, okay. Thinking, thinking. So, gratitude. Okay, so having gratitude is good for the body, the mind, the soul, and everything like that. So, it’s kind of like embrace the suck, allow the suck. Feel the suck. But and even though, nonetheless, so okay, I embrace the suck. I know this person is awful and horrible and terrible. Yes, I’m bracing, you know, gearing my loins for whatever BS, they’re going to pull next. And nonetheless, there was another life out here to live. I doesn’t have to be 24/7 them and that’s what they want. They want us to think about them. 24/7 That is their evil plan, seriously, because they’re narcissists. They want us to wake up first thing in the morning and deal with them and the rest of the day deal with them. And when we go to bed, deal with them. No, no. No, tell them to pound sand. No, no, thank you. I hear you. I see you. Yes, you’re a threat. And I got it covered. Peace out, go pound sand goodbye. And you’ll let them go. So, gratitude is part of healing, and it keeps us sane, believe it or not. Now, that’s not fake gratitude. That’s not like everything’s sunshine and roses. That is just kind of like finding the beauty in the doodoo. That’s what we’ve got to do. Okay, so back to the psychology today.
Um, grateful people are indeed less likely to have mental health problems like depression and anxiety. One study found that gratitude intervention was successful in reducing negative effect and increasing mental resilience in a group of older adults. So it’s it, especially with the older adults, the geriatric adults, it’s really important for them to gratitude, cultivate gratitude, because there’s a lot of things going south, you know, you’re losing your peer supports, you’re losing your peers, people are dropping, dying, leaving moving whatever, you know, you may be widowed, or widower and it’s important to get that sense of gratitude and, and encouragement and I think that’s the thing is that gratitude and encouragement go hand in hand.
And that’s kind of the role of therapists is to help the client find the gratitude in the in the little things and give them encouragement to broaden their horizons. So, a lot of people, especially, especially older people, geriatric people think that oh, well, you know, I need to only be associating with people my own age. Oh, hell no, cultivate younger people. Absolutely cultivate all ages, cultivate all ages, you learn so much from everybody. You learn from the elder, you learn from the younger, you’re learning from the same people. It’s great to broaden your horizons. And when we come out of an abusive relationship, they’ve taken away everything like; literally, they’ve taken away our family, they’ve taken away our friends, they’ve taken away our hobbies, they take it away our self-esteem, they’ve taken away our gratitude, they’ve taken away everything. So, it’s a matter of starting to get that back. And when we get that gratitude going, we also have we’re encouraged. We’ve been given courage, you know, it’s kind of like, oh, okay, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. It is not a freight train. Oh, maybe I can go do this. You know, it’s things like that. And that’s what we need. Hold on.
Okay, how do you practice gratitude? So being around people who genuinely have gratitude, so people who are, this is why I love Andrea. Andrea is one of my best friends. She and I, in the past, have loved Disney. I’m kind of still from the Missouri Show Me State. We’re going to go back. We’ll see. I’ll let you know. But, um, we love Disney. And she is one of the most positive people I know. And she’s great. And, you know, the two of us together, I’m sure, make people want to puke because we’re having such a good time. So, but being around people who are also looking at gratitude, grateful for where they are, what they have, and where they’re going, and things like that. It’s contagious in a great way. So, it is like it rubs off on you. And that’s why you want to surround yourself with healthy people, people who are not into the drama, people who are not into the chaos, people who are not into doom and gloom. If you’ve got people like that around, you punt them out. You don’t need that. You’ve had enough of that. With the abuser, yes, I’m going to get to the questions in just a second. So, expressing gratitude can be as simple as, you know, hey, what a great day or she would have a beautiful day, or you know, things like that we’re really getting meditative about it. And you know, considering the nature of the universe and things like that. Journaling is a great idea. Write down three good things that you that have gone well for you. That’s why I say when you’re doing the mirror work, and I think this is important. In the morning, you do the whole Hi, good to see you have a great day, I give you permission to like yourself, or whatever it is you’re working on that day, or I give you permission to stand up for yourself, or I give you permission to whatever it is. And then, at night, you do a similar thing. But this time, Hey, good to see you. Again, here are three things you did right today because we never tell ourselves what we did, right? Ever, ever. And if we were with an abuser, we especially never told ourselves what we did, right. That is a form of gratitude. So, you’re being grateful that things went right, right? So, you list three things that went right. And it can be as simple as, oh my god, I got up on time today. I managed to take a shower today. And I got out the door. Great, good job, seriously, especially if you’re dealing with depression. So do you see where I’m going with that little baby steps, baby steps to gratitude, little things. So, remind yourself every day three things? What are you grateful for?
So, my nephew and I swear I’ll get to the questions. My nephew, whenever we travel, we do this thing where we sit at the dinner table, and we go. What was the best part of the day? What was the worst part of the day? What would you like to do again, and so the kids will, you know, go around and the adults too. And we’ll talk about the best part of the worst part. And you know what we’d like to do again and things like that. And it’s gratitude. It’s really, its gratitude. Look at how much fun we had, even with the worst part of the day. Look at how much fun we had. So that is practicing gratitude. You got to find the good in the bad. You’ve got to find the silver lining in the cloud but not get stuck in a toxic positivity where it’s like, No, nothing’s wrong, everything’s great. No, wrong. Wrong. This was suck. This was the suck. Yeah, and you can acknowledge that, and there’s gonna be days when you’re going to go into that, and that’s fine. Feel it. You are the weather, the emotions; I’m sorry, you are the sky, the emotions are the weather. So, allow, just allow that, then let it pass. Don’t hang on to it. You want to let it paths. So, gratitude hugely important to mix it into your day. Tiny baby steps, tiny baby steps. Remind yourself every day three things that went right or three things
You’re grateful for what was the best part of the day? What was the worst part of the day? What would you like to do again? And what would you have never wanted to do again, you know, have fun with it, have fun with it. And what I find with having been with abusers is that they’re like living in our head. And so, when we’re having fun, it’s almost like we’re being judged by them, even though they’re not here. So literally, it’s going to be like having fun and kicking them out to the curb. Yep, they don’t get to judge you anymore. You get to enjoy your hobbies. You get to go have fun, you get to have a sense of humor, you get to be grateful you get to because it’s your right. So, boom, there it is. Alright, let’s dive into the questions. Okay.
What can I say to a friend in an abusive relationship who alternates between toxic positivity, aka denial, and realistic understanding of the situation during the toxic positivity phase? That’s a tough one. So, when somebody is in an abusive relationship, and they’re totally in denial, you’re you would have a deeper conversation with my backdrop than you were with them. That’s a really tough one because we want to save them. And we want to help them, and we want to protect them. And we want to keep them safe. And we want to get them away from the abuser and all of that stuff. But if they are being gaslighted, and they’re in the fog, fear, obligation, guilt, they’re not going to hear you. What they’ll do is they’ll run back to their abuser, until the abuser, everything you said. So, you cannot assume that any conversation you have with your friend, whether they’re in the toxic positivity stage or not, is a private conversation. They’re going to run back to the abuser, tell the abuser, the abuser is going to twist it, mess with their head. And somehow, now you’re the bad guy. That’s just what happens. All you can do is encourage them to go get a therapist. And to help them when they’re when they’re hearing it, don’t make it about the abuser. If you make it about the abuser, they’re going to run back to the abuser and tell them guarantee you can take that to the bank and earn interest on it. So, what you want to do you want to be like, hey, maybe, you know, maybe getting therapy for you would be really good. It would just expand your world and expand your self-esteem, and you know, things like that. Do you see where I’m going with that? So, you do not want to make it about the abuser if you come hardcore and be like, Look, dudette, or Dude, can you not see that this person is isolating you? Can you not see they’re going to shove their fingers in there and go lala lala Anna listening La la la la la listening. Lala, and I’m going to run back to the abuser and tell them everything you said, because they’re going to want reassurance. How many of us have done this? Hello, reassurance from the abuser that the abuser is not an abuser.
I know, I know, it’s frustrating it is. So really, the way you want to take it is you want to just, you know, hey, this could, this could benefit you, this could help you, this could expand your world, this could you know, grow your horizons, this could help your self-esteem this, you know, and get them into therapy, you know, and even if you can them books on it if they’re not ready to hear it if they’re not willing to really seriously take a look at who they’re with, and why they’re with them. And you know, etc., etc., etc., then there, it won’t do any good. It won’t do any good. And it will just do a Romeo and Juliet situation, you know us against them. And that’s exactly what the abuser wants because then they turn your friend against you. And now they’re completely isolated. And they do not have the voice of reason telling them, you know, what the hell were you doing? What do you what, you know, and that’s what the abuser wants. So, anyway, I hope that helps. Okay.
Over the years, I’ve healed somewhat from abuse, but I think it’s realistic to expect some effects to continue for the rest of my life. Yeah, absolutely. 110% What’s a good way to think about or reframe that? So, with PTSD, okay, we are always going to have residual from that. Okay. So, for example, I don’t like crowded places. Ask John. If we ever end up in some place it’s really crowded; I will look at him and go get me the hell out. I just don’t like it. I don’t feel safe. So, you know, and/or if I ever come across somebody that reminds me of my dad.
I seem calm on the outside and on the inside. I’m like, okay, Ron, Where’s the exit? How can I get out of here? What’s going on? You know, do you see where I’m going with that? So yeah, you’re always going to; we’re always gonna have triggers, guys. We’re always going to have triggers. It’s just that as we heal as we work on ourselves, the triggers are not going to be as strong. We’re not going to be like a full-blown panic attack. It may be like, you know, oh, crap, I feel like I’m going to go into a panic attack. Okay, breathe. I’m safe. I’m okay. Everything’s fine. Why? Am I having a panic attack? This person reminds me of my abuser, you know, that kind of thing. We’re always going to have little residual things. Like, for example, every once in a while, doesn’t happen very often. But every once in a while, I’ll have a flat-out nightmare, you know, and it will be abuse, and it will obviously be because of my childhood. And so, I’ll wake up poor John, sometimes I’ll wake up, I don’t ever scream, really when I wake up, but I’ve woken up crying before, I’ve woken up in a panic before, you know, like, pushing myself off the bed and like, you know, that kind of thing, which then wakes him up. And he’s like, what’s going on? You know? So those things happen. Those things happen because we’re processing stuff in why, okay, well, in my case, it’s probably because I’m helping other people process their stuff. And, you know, my subconscious just goes, Hey, we haven’t thought about this in a while. Let me just bring on nightmare. You know, they’ll have a nightmare. And I’ll work it through and figure out what the dream was about, what the symbology was about, why was I having that dream? What was going on earlier in the day, etc., etc., etc. So yeah, absolutely. It’s not like and I think this is a mistake that a lot of us survivors make is that we assume, never assume it makes an ass out of you and me that we assume that once we’ve gone through therapy, once we’ve worked all the books that were going to be sunshine and roses and unicorn farts? Well, we’re going to be a hell of a lot better. That’s for damn sure. We’re probably going to be better prepared to recognize abusers when they come into our orbit, and we can kick them out.
But and there’s always going to be triggers. Always. It’s not like our past just disappears. It’s just that we’re better able to deal with it. So yeah, so I think the way to frame it is you’re a survivor. It’s normal to continue to have triggers, but just muted. They’re a lot more muted. They’re not so they’re not so. Oh, what’s the word I’m looking for? They’re not so vivid. They’re not so nasty. It’s not all the time. Every once in a while, like seriously, like, I would say, on average, I have nightmares, probably less than once a year. So that’s, that’s good. Because in the past, I had a lot. So um, yeah, so it’s really, it’s, it’s, they’re muted. They’re still there. You’re still going to get triggered with some things. Other things, you’re not going to get triggered by things that used to trigger you won’t get triggered by other things. Yeah, you will still get through, you’re triggered by it, but it’s not as intense. So, we’re survivors. We’re survivors. And this is part of our battle wounds, basically. And it’s normal. It’s totally 110%. Normal, it doesn’t mean anything other than okay. What triggered you? What was that about? What was going on in the day? You know, what, maybe do we need to still work on how you need to comfort yourself, you know, that kind of thing. So, you always look for what is this teaching me? You know, what, what is this moment of being triggered teaching me what do I need to still work on? That’s the way I look at it. Because it’s kind of like, oh, okay, well, this is just preparing me for X, Y, or Z, you know, so and then start working on that. So yeah, so yeah, it’s totally normal guys. Totally, totally normal. It’s not like a one-and-done. It’s not like we’re healed and our past disappears. No, it’s still there. Absolutely. So, you just reframe it with its model. And there’s going to be times when you’re triggered and sometimes intensely and sometimes not. But you’ve got the tools now, which is really good.
Okay, so, when we are healing with gratitude, I can tend to get stuck between the processes. I need to pause and reset. How do we remember to embrace emotions or other situations after abuse without overthinking and self-doubting our thoughts? I tend to ask my friends advice. Okay, totally normal because we’ve been told we can’t trust ourselves because of the gaslighting. So gaslighting is where you make a statement, you know, I am feeling sad or betrayed or whatever they go. No, you’re not.
What? Yeah, that’s gaslighting. So, you know, or they rewrite history. You know? It’s like, oh, I never did that. I never abused you. I never said that. I never bah, bah, bah. You know what? Yeah, you did. So that’s why we start doubting ourselves because they keep telling us we’re wrong. So, it’s a matter of working on your self-esteem. I kid you not when I tell you guys self-esteem is the basis for literally everything, it is the basis for literally everything. So, the Disease to Please by Harriet Breaker is going to help with codependency. Other people do not know you better than you do. Let me say that again. Other people, even if they’re therapist do not know you better than you do. And that is something that abusers love to do. How many times have these asshats said oh, I know you better than you know yourself. Oh, run. Do not walk to the nearest exit. No, you know you. better than anybody else does. You know you better than anybody else does. Trust your gut. So, a couple of things one self-esteem workbook Glen Schiraldi. Two Disease please, Harry Braiker, three, practice.
Yeah. How do we practice? All right, our head and our heart tell stories. That’s what messes us up. It does. Because the head and the heart are like, oh, well, yes, this than the other thing. But what about that? And and oh, well, no. Well, what about this and lots of story and lots of panic and lots of chaos. And that is interesting. The gut instinct, the gut, not the head, not the heart, the gut. Is a simple yes or no answer to a yes or no question, and you start practicing trusting your gut with answers you already know.
So, I know I’ve given this 1000 times I’ll give it 1000 times more. But hold on before we get there. What so we’ve learned to not trust ourselves. Because generally, in an abusive family, we’re probably the black sheep; most times out of 10, we see the pink elephant taking a dump in the corner of the living room. The abuser comes along after we’ve said, Hey, there’s a pink elephant taking a dump in the corner of the living room, smacks us upside the head, and says no, you don’t. There’s no pink elephant gaslighting. And so, we learned at a very early age. Oh, well, I see that I’m getting punished for seeing that. So, I guess I don’t see the pink elephant. No, you do see the pink elephant. Oh my god. You’ve seen the pink elephant all along. So, it’s validating yourself that, yes, I have seen the pink elephant the whole damn time. I just got told that I didn’t see it. And I was gaslit. Hello. So, you know, validating yourself. So, what you do is you practice so you start with something you already know. Something you already know. So, for me, I hate peanut butter. I hate it. It’s the texture. Oh, God, any of the nut butters. I know little don’t like the texture. I don’t know what it is. But here’s the weird thing. I love Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. Go figure. I don’t get it. Maybe it’s because it’s a tiny amount. It’s super sweet. I don’t know. So, what I do is or what I did in the beginning, is I would go, Okay, gut. Do you like peanut butter and my gut literally… it’s like, oh, no, no story. No story. Just know, like a visceral, almost like a physical reaction was like no. Who, okay, I don’t like peanut butter. Okay. All right, good. Do you like Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups? Yep.
No story. Just calm. Yes or no. So, you start with something you already know. And notice how your body feels. That’s your gut instinct. That is your gut instinct. If there’s story, if there’s confusion, if there’s chaos, if there’s drama, that’s your head or your heart. The gut is just a yes or no answer to a yes or no question with possibly a physical sensation with it. So, the no one for me is always like a oooh kind of thing. The Yes, one from us like this calm just Oh, yeah. Yeah. It’s all good. So, practice, practice with things you already know. And then expand that out to Okay. We’ve got this new person at work. Okay, gut. Is this somebody I can trust? No. Ooh, okay. Thank you, gut. And trust that, trust that. That’s your gut instinct.
So, do you see where I’m going with that? So, you got to practice it does. It takes practice. We had the natural trusting of ourselves until it got ripped away from us, literally by our abuser, you know, physically, mentally, whatever, you know, like with my dad, he would hit it out of me, or try to, you know, so we’ve got to learn to start practicing that again. So, we trust it, that we trust ourselves. We are the most important person to trust in our entire lives. Let me say that again. We ourselves are the most important, important, important, important person to trust in our entire lives because our gut instinct is going to keep us safe. And we’re always going to friends and get advice are always going well maybe I’m wrong and but what do you think? They don’t know you better than you do. You know you better than anybody else. Trust that.
And it’s fine to get a second opinion. I mean, it’s perfectly okay to be like, Okay, I’m new to this whole trusting myself. But make sure whoever you’re going to for reassurance is healthy. Because if you go to somebody that’s unhealthy, they’re going to steer you wrong. Does that make sense? So, work the Self-Esteem Workbook by Glenn Schiraldi. It is fantastic. I love it. Take your time. It takes between three and six months to do it. Don’t rush through it. Treat it like a gourmet meal. You want to savor every single bit of information he’s giving you because it’s going to save you it’s going to keep you safe. It’s seriously, it’s like once your self-esteem and rock-solid sun comes up in the East sets in the west. It’s unlikely you’re going to let an abuser anywhere near you because you’re just kind of like nope, that’s gaslighting. No, thank you been there, done that, bought the souvenir program, really don’t want to do that again, have a nice life. And by that, I mean go pound sand. Goodbye. You see where I’m going with that. So yeah, work on the self-esteem. And that is how we start trusting ourselves. That is how we start listening to our gut instinct. You know, practicing practice, it takes practice, it takes practice. Do it every day. Do it every day. Hmm, do I like this? Yes or no gut? What do I think? And listen to that. If there’s story, if there’s drama, if there’s chaos, that’s your head, or your heart tell it to shut up? Nope. I’m talking to the gut. So, practice, that would be my best advice. Okay. Um, art.
Do? Oh, yes. Oh my gosh, do narcs present with fake gratitude? Yes. Like they pretend to be so grateful for something or someone but secretly hate the person involved, and slags them off behind their backs. Oh, my God. Yes. So, narcissists generally hate the best friends and the family that are healthy. And so, they’ll be like, to their face, kissy kissy nicey nicey and then behind their backs, they’ll be nasty. Now. What I’ve also seen narcissists do is they’ll go, oh, well, you know, your best friend was talking to you about me and she’s the narcissist or he’s the narcissist or whatever. So, there’s a huge difference. There’s a huge difference between somebody who’s seeing their friend go down the toilet and going hey red flag, seeing all these things. This is why I’m saying it doesn’t work because it never does. Because the abused runs back to the abuser tells them about it. And then the narcissist being manipulative switches the game and makes it all about the friend as opposed to them. So yeah, no, they absolutely do that. They pretend they’re how to explain this. And I think I’ve done several videos on this. It’s like, okay, it’s like they, a lot of these narcissists tend to be communal narcissists. So, they’re very much attracted to like, metaphysical, you know, positions of power. Criminology. Sorry, that was an earlier topic anyway, now, but they’re attracted to the metaphysical. And so, in the metaphysical community, there is this toxic positivity thing. And generally, what I find is that it’s, it’s these gurus, who are like, narcissists, who are like pushing this whole everything is sunshine and roses and unicorn farts. And you need to give me all your money to make sure that it continues to be sunshine and roses and unicorn farts. Do you see where I’m going with that?
Anyway, yes, in the metaphysical community in the yoga community, there’s a whole bunch of narcissists. There are the Gurus who are the ones that, like, you know, I have the answer. Nobody else does. No, no, there are lots of different paths to the top people. So anyway, it’s yeah, be careful of anybody who’s like, needing to be sunshine and roses all the time, and generally look to see what their agenda is, they’re probably, you know, looking for money or whatever. So yeah, they do the whole, you know, fake gratitude, etcetera, etcetera, etcetera. And they’re really not, and they’re doing it because they want to remember it’s all appearances for them. So, the Narcissist is very, very, very concerned about appearances. Doesn’t matter whether they’re over-covert, whatever. They’re super concerned with appearances. So, they’re going to be like, Oh, I’m so grateful for this and everything, and everything’s always sunshine and roses. And look how fabulous I am, you know, over kind of thing. So, yeah, they do that, especially in the communal Narcissists are the ones that are gathering their harem to them or gathering their followers to them. So yeah, just be careful of people like that. Absolutely. All right, kiddos, I think. I think that’s it. I think, hold on. Let me make sure I got all the questions. Did I miss any of them?
All right. Johnny. Any more questions? About the last one? Yep. Yeah. That’s that, okay. Anyway, you guys have a great week. Take very good care of yourselves. Practice, practice, practice. Don’t listen to the head. Don’t listen to the heart. Listen to your gut. Practice, Baby steps, baby steps. That’s what you need. And just a little bit of gratitude every day doesn’t have to be a grand gesture. It can be as simple as Wow, great breakfast, you know, or Wow, pretty cloud, or, you know, even though the narcissist is
being a jerk and driving me crazy with the attorney and the lawyers and the this and that, nonetheless, the kids are doing okay, I love myself, I love the kids. Do you see where I’m going with that?
So, you find the good in the icky is basically what gratitude is. And the more you’re able to do that the easier life becomes because we don’t get stuck in the suck. We acknowledge the suck. You are the sky the suck is the weather you allow it to come in and blow out, come in and blow out as often as you need to. And you acknowledge it; you don’t go Oh, no, everything’s fine. You know, no, no. Fine in a counselor’s language and then I swear I’ll shut up. Fine in a counselor’s language is it stands for effed up insecure, neurotic and emotional. So, when somebody says they’re fine to me, I go, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, is that a counselor is fine. Are you really okay? So yeah, you want to be really careful of that. If somebody’s always going on, we’re fine. I’m fine. I’m fine. And they’re not; then they’re not dealing with their emotions. Honestly, healthy people, if things are not okay, they go Could be better things are kind of HID right now, but you know, in and I’ll survive, you know, so anyway, does that sound okay, kids, have a great week, drink plenty of water, and I will talk to you later.
Thank you so much for listening to this podcast. You can always listen live on YouTube every week Sunday at noon, Arizona Mountain Standard Time. And if you want to find out more or listen to other episodes, you can go to Krisgodinez.com and if you have a chance, subscribe to this show on whatever podcast app you use and let other people know about it. I want to thank my sponsor betterhelp.com. They are an online therapy company. Whether you are in the US or internationally, they will set you up with a qualified licensed therapist: Ph.D. level or Master’s level. If you are interested in more information, go to betterhelp.com/krisgodinez.
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