Thursday, July 18, 2013

Could Your Childhood Vows Be The Answer?

Do you sometimes feel your life is more like a constant struggle instead of a journey you can enjoy, and you're confused about the way things in your life turn out? Many intelligent, good people have lives that are not what they envisioned for themselves. And the answer is probably in vows they made growing up that determine their quality of life.

Children receive messages from their environment about themselves, others, and the world, and they label them positive or negative, pleasant or painful. Then they create vows to protect themselves from the hurtful ones. These vows can affect any area of adult life such as personality, relationships, work, money, etc.

These messages can come in 3 ways, from something someone says directly to the child, or from experiences or observations. For example, someone says to a child, "You're stupid," or the child experiences not being chosen for the team at school, or they observe parents often fighting about money. And the child will create vows to protect himself or herself from hurtful feelings.

From the first message, the adult says, "I'm too stupid to do anything right, so I just won't even try to follow my dreams." From the second one, the adult says, "No one's going to choose me for the promotion at work, so I won't even apply." And from the third one, the adult says, "There's never going to be enough money, so I'll never expect to have much." Each of these vows may seem like protection, but in the long run they cause life struggles instead of a fulfilling journey, and they actually create more hurt.

I've overcome many of my childhood vows, but I'm still dealing with some of them. When I was six years old, after my father died, I vowed that I would take care of myself, never need anyone again, and never bother anyone with my problems. I've learned that vows don't usually lead to protection from the hurt. I've spent my life being independent, taking care of myself, and rarely asking for help. But I've learned it's lonely being alone inside. However, I've also learned that we can release our vows and have that fulfilling journey.

If you feel a vow may be affecting an area of your life in a negative way, observe your actions and behavior patterns in that area. These are clues. Then get quiet and ask your inner self to reveal what you need to know. Be patient and listen. When you discover a vow, expose it as being untrue, and confront it with the truth of yourself and the situation. You're intelligent, deserving, lovable, capable, and all those good qualities you were given when you were created. And believing otherwise is denying the truth and living a vow. Start working on those vows, and give them time to surface and disappear.

I wish you a happy, authentic journey.



  1. Marilyn,
    I've never heard it this way before. The idea of making childhood vows is interesting. Again, you've given me something to think about. Thanks.

    ps. If there's something I can do to help, please don't hesitate to ask.

  2. Thanks, Mary. The vows are an interesting phenomenon, and very much a part of our adult suffering. If we could get rid of those, we could be haaaaapy.