Family Law #3 – Give and Take

give and take

Give and take

The third and final rule that governs a family system – and in fact, any systems that have humans in it – is the rule that giving and receiving have to be balanced. Yes, it’s a bit like energetic bookkeeping, except that it is okay to give just a little bit more than you receive.

Very poetically, there is one thing that can never be balanced: Parents giving birth. The gift of life is so huge, it can only be passed on to the next generation. And if you don’t have children, you can still pass it on by helping with other kids, or breathing life into your passion.

Everything else, however, has to be balanced.

Here’s the story of two of my friends to show the results of severe imbalance: They were both university students when they met and fell in love. He decided to get a job to support her until she got her exam. Then, that was the plan, she would support him with her job while he finished his studies. Except that the second part never happened. As soon as she got her exam, she left him, moved far away and founded a family with another man.

How could she do this to him?

The imbalance had become too great. She was too indebted to him on moral grounds and it became overwhelming after all the years. They had neglected to create little ways of letting him receive something from her. So in the end, she could only run.

I still feel sad about it.

So if you give and give and give, expecting to get something in return – don’t. Just take a close look at how you feel when you give. Resentment is an indicator that there is an imbalance and that you are doing too much giving.

The great thing about family dynamics is that everyone shifts when you shift. When you reduce your constant giving, you create space for the others to give to you. Maybe they’ll even surprise you.

You might actually have to learn how to receive if you haven’t practiced it. Receiving can be difficult – especially receiving with grace and appreciation. However, it’s important that you learn how to do it.

And then the family system can shift.

Here’s some tapping to help you restore the balance of giving and receiving:

Even though I was taught as a kid that giving was holier than taking, I’m okay the way I am, and I now allow myself to receive more than I have been.

Even though I always thought it was my fault that I feel resentful when I give so much, and tried to give even more out of shame, I’m okay the way I am, and I now allow myself to find a much better balance between giving and receiving.

Even though I thought I was a good mom / human being / family member because I was giving so much, all the time, I’m still okay the way I am, and I now realize that too much giving can actually make people run. I’m ready to receive more now.

Did this resonate with you? Did this feel weird? Do you have a question? Write a comment!

Image source: F. Moebius

PS: If you want some support around this topic, or with unpleasant family dynamics, just click HERE and send me an email. We’ll connect and talk about how I can support you best. I work internationally through Skype.

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Family Law #2 – Order

Family Order

Family Order

The second family law is about order. Everyone has their true place in a family. The mother cannot change places with the father. The youngest sibling cannot trade places with the oldest. They have different places in a family – and different “jobs”.

Just think about how a first child forges the way. It wrestles every inch of freedom from the parents. Often, it also carries some responsibility for the younger ones. This is a special place in a family, one that nobody else takes. Continue reading

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Family Law #1



One of the most basic laws in the family system is about belonging. It simply says that everyone belongs into a family, entering it either by birth, by becoming a parent, or by marriage. Dissolving the ties to a family is basically impossible and only happens when a member causes the death of another family member in a brutal and planned way. (Abortion does not do it, btw.) In short, this means that:

Everyone who becomes part of a family belongs to it forever.

Yes, that means even the dead ones, even the ones that were driven away, even the ones everyone hates. They all contribute to the family dynamics. This can be both painful and a relief. Continue reading

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The Family System



You’ve probably seen me mention family rules and such for quite a while. Today, I want to give a bit of background about the whole idea of family as system.

Basically, the assumption is that a family has certain dynamics that work beyond the individuals that make it up. It is a system of energy with its own rules that can sometimes affect a family member negatively for the “greater good”, such as keeping a family together. Such a system always works to stabilize itself.

Imagine one of those mobiles that used to be common several decades ago. (That’s why I put a picture of one into this article.) As you can see, the mobile always balances itself out. That’s the whole point of it. The same holds true for a family system.

This is good and bad. Continue reading

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Still Laughing at Trauma?



I’m writing this blog because I’m still furious.

You see, some days ago I ran into a discussion on a blog where a traumatizing event was dismissed out of hand by the commentators. They told the person who opened up to her personal trauma to toughen up like everyone else does, and to just go on with her life and career.

Sounds familiar?

That’s what soldiers were told in WWI (and probably much earlier). Shell shock, they called it back then, and experiencing it was a “sign of lack of character”. Even today, soldiers are reluctant to get help for PTSD (post traumatic stress syndrome). They still fear to be seen as weak, as losers, as “sissies”.

The general consensus is that it takes an experience of clear danger to life or personal integrity, including being helpless, to cause PTSD. However, there are several levels of trauma below full-blown PTSD. And it doesn’t take a life-threatening event to cause that kind of trauma. Continue reading

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What if I’m not good enough?

Not good enough

Not good enough.

Throughout our lives, we have been taught to compare ourselves with others, starting in kindergarden at the latest. We compared the pictures we created. We compared our running speeds. We compared grades in school and competed for best of class in college.

We compare earnings, cars and lifestyle as adults. We compare beauty, fitness and weight. We compare everything, and we still do today, most of the time. It’s still our life. We were trained to compete all the time.

And of course, nobody can win all those competitions. Only one can be the best, and the rest are losers. Not good enough. At a bet, there are tons of things you believe you’re not the best in.

I know I’m not the fastest runner, not the best rider, not the biggest marketer, not living in the biggest, most beautiful and cleanest apartment. And that could make me sad, because very clearly there are people who are better at these things.

I’m not a good enough runner, rider, marketer, apartment owner or housekeeper. That’s one conclusion to draw. Many of us draw this conclusion every day.

“I’m just not good enough.” *sigh* Continue reading

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Dealing with Distraction



Did you just catch yourself playing Solitaire? Or hopping onto Facebook and scrolling through your timeline? And of course, you do this while should be creating content or writing bills or tweak a package…

Possibly now you feel guilty on top of being stressed and running behind schedule.

And you find yourself looking at CNN only a moment later.

That’s actually a very normal pattern. It’s a way of dealing with stress that you probably learned very early in life. I like to call it “numbing out”. And the truth is, this pattern does help for a few seconds. It does take away the stress for a moment – but at a high price. At the price of guilt and shame.

You can stop blaming yourself this moment, though. Continue reading

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The EFT Pick-Me-Up



Sometimes, we just run out of steam. No energy to do even just one more thing. And if you’re like me, there are lots of things on your to-do list.

That’s normal. And it’s a sign we need to schedule breaks and recreation in our calendars. So do that now. Go and schedule a break – I’ll wait for you until you get back here.

Now, sometimes, we don’t have time for a break. (Don’t make that a habit, though!) But if the going gets rough, and you just *have* to get things done, there’s nothing but gritting your teeth and hanging in there, and git ‘er done!


Well, there’s EFT. Continue reading

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Are you in a Relationship with your Business?

I love my Business

I love my Business

Of course! What a silly question!

But have you ever really sat down and considered the relationship you have with your business?

How do you feel about the business that you created and are working to grow now? Is it still a willful baby? Is it purring along nicely and making you good money? Or is it stuttering und moving in spurts and fits?

How do you feel about your business?

Quite possibly it’s a love / hate relationship. And I’m fairly sure it’s not the kind of relationship you dreamed of when you started out. However, we can change that.

Here’s what to do: Continue reading

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Standing in Your Power

stand in your power

Stand in your power

Sometimes, when things don’t go as you want them, or when people criticize you, the natural reaction is to contract and play small. We give in, we apologize, we hope this situation will go away somehow.

And that makes us lose our power.

It feels safer than staying tall and strong.

Playing small is what we are used to. For a long time in our lives – in fact, for most of our forming years – we were small. We had less power than our parents, we were forced to obey and do what they wanted. So we learned to deal with that by stuffing our emotions away, by ducking our heads and by doing what others wanted.

It’s normal. It’s safe. It’s what we are used to.

And it keeps us small. Continue reading

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