3 Limiting Beliefs That Hold You Back in Narcissistic Abuse Recovery

Written by Angela Atkinson

When I first started my healing journey through narcissistic abuse recovery, I didn’t even know what a limiting belief was. Yet, I still found myself victim to some of these negative thoughts and feelings.

How do you figure out which limiting beliefs you’re holding on to?

It’s definitely a process to suss out your own limiting beliefs, but it’s a worthy one. For me, it took looking back at my childhood traumas and the beliefs I learned growing up before I discovered that they were holding me back. This is when it finally clicked for me; how could I ever live the life I wanted if those very thoughts and feelings were preventing it from coming to fruition? It was time to let go. Can you relate?

What are the limiting beliefs holding you back from narcissistic abuse recovery?

There are several limiting beliefs that can hold you back in your recovery from narcissistic abuse. You may have developed these due to childhood trauma and/or the trauma the narcissist inflicted on you. Regardless of how you came to believe these things about yourself, they will prevent you from healing and getting over your ex. It is time to let go of what’s holding you back so you can move forward and create a healthy future for yourself!

Why do we feel so powerless after narcissistic abuse?

One of the biggest struggles for survivors of narcissistic abuse is learning that they need to start putting themselves first or consider themselves a top priority. This seems easier than it might actually be, especially for those of us who have been through the hell of being connected to a toxic person. In addition to our own perceptions about what we SHOULD be, we have society telling us that we’re supposed to always put other people before ourselves.

Think about it: how many times did your mom tell you not to be selfish? How much social pressure is there for you to be selfless?

3 Limiting Beliefs You Need to Let Go Of Today

If you’ve been in a toxic relationship, you know how hard it can be to put yourself first. If you’re having trouble prioritizing yourself without guilt, there might be something holding you back. Now is the time to let go of those limiting beliefs and take control of your own life.

1. If I set boundaries, no one will like me!

You’re allowed (and, in my opinion, you have a responsibility) to set boundaries. But narcissists have this way of pushing your boundaries and eventually eliminating them, so you might be a little out of practice. The first thing I want to do is reassure you – if you start to take care of yourself, your friends and family will like you even better. They’ll be relieved to finally see you getting your needs met.

The unfortunate thing is that the people who might push away from you might also be toxic. But for those who are your real friends and who really care, you’ll find something very different happens. If you’re polite but firm, they’ll accept that you can’t run yourself ragged doing what everyone else wants all the time. They might even respect you more for your honesty!

2. Everyone counts on me to be the strong one!

You know that friend who is constantly inviting themselves to dinner at your house? The one who always seems to have the neediest, most dramatic problems ever? Who thinks that “caring” means you should spend time listening to their never-ending parade of complaints about how hard their life is? Are you falling into the role of the victim/rescuer? You’re having a tough time and no one hears you. Do they even care or are they just used to hearing your sad stories?

Having been scapegoated and played, the eternal caregiver is a self-inflicted victim role that narcissists make their victims adopt by exploiting their vulnerabilities. In a way, they are emotionally manipulating us into sacrificing ourselves on the altar of their false emotional needs, which are as hollow as their pathological ego. It’s time to step out of our people-pleaser roles and reclaim our true identities, to become more authentic and whole.

You might be wondering why you feel the need to take care of everyone and everything. And if you don’t start taking care of yourself, might you become someone who gets burnt out and resentful? After all, it can be exhausting to have other people always relying on you. So take some time to get some rest. You deserve it after all!

Cut yourself and everyone else some slack and let other people help too. As a bonus, if you make sure your own needs are satisfied, you’ll be in a much better position to give.

3. But, it’s not right to put me first!

It may seem counterintuitive, but putting yourself first is actually good advice. It is not selfish to start caring for your physical and emotional health. When you don’t put yourself first, you’re telling your unconscious mind that other people are more important than you. And listen – believing you can’t achieve anything, and you don’t deserve to succeed is a recipe for staying stuck.

Why do you need to leave these limiting beliefs behind you?

Are you drained of energy by putting other’s needs before yours? Or perhaps you’ve given up on believing your needs and desires will ever come first? These three core beliefs need to be challenged and overcome if you’re going to develop a healthier attitude to putting yourself first. Like changing any habit, you need to practice and take baby steps first.

Have a look at your own needs and desires, and practice saying yes to what your body, mind, and heart need.

Are you having trouble keeping yourself from falling back into your toxic relationship?

You might be interested in this discussion we had during a live stream today in which we discussed letting go of your feelings for the toxic person in your life and steps you can take to ease the pain.

If you need additional help and support in your narcissistic abuse recovery, look for a trauma-informed professional trained in helping people who are dealing with overcoming narcissistic abuse in toxic relationships. Depending on your particular situation, you might benefit from Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Coaching, or you might do better with a therapist. But, first, you have to decide what to do from here – if you’re unsure, start with my free Narcissistic Abuse Recovery quiz. With your results will come recommended resources for your situation.

Start Getting Help with Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Today

If you haven’t already picked it up, head over and download your free PLANning Tool Kit (Planning to Leave a Narcissist). Then, when you’re safe and ready to move forward, remember that online help is readily available for survivors of narcissistic abuse. Here are some options to begin healing from narcissistic abuse right away.

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