Hello, my loves. Welcome back to Unf*ck Your Relationships, where we’re unfucking your relationships to all of the things. Today, I want to talk about unfucking your relationship with yourself, and how important it is to get to know yourself.
My relationship to myself has evolved drastically over the years. When I first started this work, I barely had any connection to myself. Before I started coaching, I remember sitting in therapy and complaining about relationships, and that’s where I found out there was a name for what I was experiencing: an anxious avoidant attachment style. Who knew? So I started to go on this self-development journey, and through that, I started coaching.
This is why, at the core of every offer I have to help you unfuck your relationships, your relationship with a partner is always secondary to the relationship that you have with yourself. The priority is always helping you get to know yourself…
I deeply believe that your desire to know yourself needs to outweigh your desire to distract yourself.
This is big. Take this in: your desire to know yourself needs to outweigh your desire to distract yourself.
So when we’re feeling big emotions, when we’re feeling insecure, when we’re feeling jealous, when we’re feeling shame, when we’re feeling anger, when we’re feeling sadness, grief, envy…when we’re feeling any intense emotion, most people tend to go into distraction mode.
They start reaching for a glass of wine. They go sit in front of the TV and binge. They go and drown their sorrows in food. They scroll TikTok for hours on end.
Whatever your thing is, it’s all the same: it’s an addiction you use as a distraction from getting to know yourself.
We’re all addicts at the end of the day. I really don’t see any separation between someone who’s addicted to food or social media and someone who’s addicted to alcohol or drugs.
It’s the same thing. It’s a distraction from what’s actually going on at the core of the situation. But every time you avoid getting to know yourself, you create more distance within yourself, and that’s not what we want.
If you think about it, you are always observing yourself. But when we go into distraction mode, we’re creating separation within ourselves, and we can only meet other people to the level of depth that we’re willing to meet ourselves. So when we refuse to connect with ourselves, we cut ourselves off from knowing others as well.
Becoming really fucking intimate with our emotions is so, so important. I can’t tell you enough how important it is. It has been an absolute game-changer for me.
This is why I love shadow work so much, because it has helped me reclaim different aspects of myself I might have distracted myself from otherwise.
Now, when people hear “shadow work,” they often think they’re seeing aspects of themselves that could be seen as negative. That could mean their jealousy, their superiority, their rage, or maybe their insecurity. But shadow work is also about the opposite, where you might start seeing positives. For instance, you might start noticing how nurturing you are or how soft you are or how confident you are or how powerful you are.
So it’s both. But when we’re constantly in distraction mode, we don’t actually ever get to become intimate with any of those parts of ourselves.
The main point that I want to make here is this: we are never going to be able to have intimacy with another if we can’t have intimacy with ourselves. And we can’t have intimacy with ourselves when every time we have a feeling, we pick up our phone to distract ourselves.
So, what would happen if you actually just…sat with yourself? What if you allowed the emotion to be there? What if you allowed yourself to see yourself in a pattern without going into a shame spiral?
Here’s the most important question: do you actually want to know yourself?
A lot of people say they do, but oftentimes they actually don’t, because they don’t know what they’re going to find there.
So many people have an intense fear of the unknown, partially because it might make them take responsibility for some things they’ve been embracing victimhood around instead. If they find out that they’re actually really confident, they’re going to have to do things differently. Once they see that they’re actually completely codependent in their relationships, they can’t unsee that, and they’ll have to do things differently.
Things like social media and alcohol aren’t the only things that can act as distractions from getting to know yourself.
Comparison can be a distraction. Competition can be a distraction. And—this is really going to fuck you up—self-help can be a distraction in and of itself.
I actually caught myself doing this a while ago. I would notice myself feeling something really, really intense, and instead of sitting with it, I would go put on a training. I would go and say, “I’m going to learn about emotional intelligence.”
Bitch, the actual learning and embodiment of emotional intelligence would be to turn the fucking training off and sit with yourself. That’s actual emotional intelligence.
So we need to stop and see where we’re actually distracting ourselves with things that are “good” for us.
Anything can be a fucking distraction. Growing your business could be a distraction. Dating could be a distraction. I can’t tell you what your distractions are. Only you know. Where are you doing things in complete congruence and integrity, and where are you doing things to outrun yourself?
I really want you to contemplate that question…and I want you to notice, if you want to distract yourself from the question, what your go-to distractions are. Notice where you’re trying to go to avoid answering that question.
We need to take responsibility for the intimacy we have with ourselves. You want that deep level of intimacy with a man? It starts with you getting to know yourself, babe.
I know that’s so cheesy to say, but it’s fucking true, and no amount of paying money to a mentor or courses or whatever you choose is going to outdo you doing the work to actually know yourself.
To know yourself means to sit with yourself, to be with yourself, to not try to escape yourself, and to see your insecurity…and your power.
Join Main Character Energy, a 6-week course on becoming the main character of your life and stepping into delusional confidence: https://michellepanning.com/main-character-energy
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Ready to do the work? You can find all courses, masterclasses, and more right here: https://michellepanning.com/all-offers
I get it, girl. I’ve been there too. For years, I was going through the same experiences with men over and over again that left me feeling confused, anxious and pissed off.
I silenced myself in dating and relationships because I was terrified of being judged, rejected and abandoned. It all changed when I went through a break-up and thought “enough is enough. I cannot continue to repeat the same relationships with different men! Something HAS to change!”