By Lezah Young
Denise is a divorced, single mother, with 3 teenage girls. She calls me for a session regarding her job security. She has worked for several years at Lockheed Martin, generally liking her co-workers and bosses until now. Moving into a new department six months ago came with a new boss as well. Her new boss is a younger woman who she has had difficulty with ever since her arrival. Denise asks me to tell her why her boss doesn’t like her, and if she is going to get fired.
I’m immediately drawn to 2 energy centers in her body. I see in her solar plexus, her 3rd energy center, that she is afraid, feeling insecure, yet angry and powerless. I also see in her 1st energy center, located at the base of her spine, that her grounding cord is curled up instead of rooted in the earth where it normally would be if she felt safe and connected. She tells me that her survival in the company feels threatened because her new boss seems to dislike her for no apparent reason.
I look at her boss on an energy level, who I will call Jean. Denise is accurate. I see that Jean doesn’t like Denise for several reasons. One reason is that Denise is competent, therefore she is competition, some other reasons are that she’s good-looking, and well liked by her co-workers.
By contrast Jean is not well liked, she feels threatened by the fact that Denise is, and threatened by Denise’s good looks. Even though Jean is competent, and she’s risen to a higher position in the company, her self-esteem is low.
I see that Jean is aggressive and must be “right” all the time. Clearly she doesn’t take care of her body; I see the emotional pain in her body, and she appears puffy and swollen the way an alcoholic or the way someone who eats a high sugar diet looks.
Denise has some self-esteem issues as well. She was married to an abusive man who belittled her through criticisms; beat her down by yelling at her, with occasional outbursts of physical attacks.
She has been working on rebuilding her self-esteem in therapy since her divorce, but her new boss, Jean, reminds her of her ex-husband. Jean comes at her with such a force behind her criticisms that Denise becomes defensive, begins to sweat, and feels her anger bubbling.
I see that the solution is for Denise to go to her other supervisors, give them the details of the experiences, and let them know that she feels she is working in a hostile environment.
I also encourage her to go to the Human Resources Department to discuss the situation, and file a complaint. In so doing, I later learn in our next session, that the HR Dept. has had a number of complaints filed for the same reasons against Jean. Denise is feeling better but she knows that she will be Jean’s target for bullying again unless she moves to another dept.
I take a look at other options for her in the company. I see that there are two other areas that would welcome her. I encourage her to talk to the same woman in the HR Dept. about moving. I also suggest that she reach out to those other departments to let them know she is interested in working with them.
Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, I encourage Denise to write, what I call, therapeutic letters when she gets home. These are letters that you don’t send to anyone. I suggest that Denise write to both Jean and her ex-husband. Tell them how she feels, get as angry as she is; express all her thoughts and feelings in the letters.
Then wad them up into little balls, throw them against the wall while shouting whatever comes to her mind. I encourage her to vent without editing, to fully vent. Emotion is “energy in motion.” It’s in motion unless we trap it in our bodies through denying its existence.
When we deny feelings, and don’t express them responsibly, they turn into anxiety, distress, disease and more. Trapped feelings are visible to me inside the body, and in the energy body. They generally take the form of masses of blackness or sometimes other colors but after they’re removed balance is restored.
Some weeks later I received a letter from Denise. She expressed relief and happiness for her change in the company and her new supervisor. She would see Jean from time to time but no longer could she be in her cross hairs. Denise changed her location in the company in part, by changing her feelings. She regained her power when she changed her feelings by venting, and by doing the footwork. This process, while time consuming, has improved her self-esteem and self-trust. Hooray for Denise!