Anxiety counseling for codependency with Empower Counseling.
Do you often find yourself putting other people in your life before yourself at all cost? Has this caused you
to neglect your own needs and wants? Maybe you tell yourself this is just how you are and you
are happy to always put others first? If so this could be a sign of being codependent, something
that often accompanies other mental health struggles and makes it so that we never give
ourselves the care we need.
What is Codependency?
Codependency is a term thrown around quite often today that is not always used in the most
accurate way. Codependency is a pattern of behaviors that involves us diminishing our own
needs so that we can meet the needs of others that we feel are more important than ourselves.
As PsychCentral puts it, “It is when compassion turns to a compulsion to care for others. It feels
as if you are living someone else’s life for them. You give up your own desires and needs to
keep others happy.” This often develops alongside trauma, anxiety, and other mental
health disorders as a way for us to cope with what is going on in our lives. Often times when
working with clients that present with codependent behaviors I come to find that they learned it
growing up with a family that was neglectful or abusive, or they enter into abusive relationships
later in life that force them to be codependent. We can be taught by family or partners who are
codependent themselves, or develop it as a survival mechanism to deal with anxiety about
abandonment from those we care about. Regardless of what causes us to develop this way, the
result is that we become so used to putting our own needs to the side for others that we neglect
ourselves and feel spread too thin. This is not a sustainable place to be, but because we
become so used to it we often don’t notice until we collapse.
Diminishing Yourself For Someone Else
What codependency often results in is a cycle of anticipating someone else’s needs before they
ask, diminishing parts of ourself that may cause conflict, all to provide a false feeling of intimacy
with that person that doesn’t satisfy us in a real way. This often leads to chasing after those few
moments of connection and being in a constant state of anxiety over what that person wants, all
the while feeling inadequate and on edge. Because we are so focused on what others think
about us while dismissing ourselves this often leads to staying in abusive relationships longer
than we should and ignoring our own intuition about others. One of the things I see often in anxiety counseling, with
clients struggling with codependency, is that they have gotten so used to putting others first that
they have trouble with their self identity and have taken on others desires without realizing it.
How anxiety counseling for codependency with Empower Counseling Can Help
As mentioned above, one of the problems I work on with clients who have codependent
tendencies is exploring what their self identity is and how to put themselves before others.
What this means is not becoming a totally selfish person, but how to healthily balance our needs
with that of others while also realizing how working on ourselves also helps those around us. One
thing I often say to clients about this is that if we never stop pouring ourselves into others then
we eventually run dry, and then we can’t help anyone. We have to learn to how to take care of
our own needs so that we can be there for those we care about. Another part of anxiety counseling for
codependency is teaching clients about the importance of self-love and learning ways to build this.
By filling the space within ourselves we have been trying to fill with others we can start making
better choices in life because they are what we want, not out of desperation to appease others.
If you have realized you need anxiety counseling for your codependent tendencies and you want to
make a change to your life, reach out to us about anxiety counseling counseling. We can help you to make the
changes you have been wanting to make so you can enjoy your life on a whole other level.
Empower Counseling offers three knowledgeable, compassionate counselors for anxiety counseling for codependence. Kathryn, Adam, and Kristine are all licensed counselors trained in Acceptance Commitment Therapy, which has self-compassion and value work-both incredibly effective for changing co-dependent behavior.
Empower Counseling offers in person and online counseling for anxiety, depression, and difficult life transitions, as well as, codependency. We help teens, college students, young adults, and professionals in our Birmingham area counseling office.
Reach out to Empower Counseling today by sending an email from our home page.