Welcome to the Revolutionary Rompereglas podcast, where we converge at the intersection of ancestral inheritance, spirituality, trauma healing, pleasure, intimacy, magic and leadership. I’m Isha Vela, somatic expressive Alchemist for new era healers, change agents and bridge builders. I believe that unraveling fractured concepts of ourselves that live in our emotional spiritual mental systems, while moving towards sovereignty and devotion is the real work towards our personal and collective liberation. In this first season of the podcast, I’m interviewing New Era leaders who are sharing their personal journeys, and how it’s brought them to the purpose-led work they do now. Occasionally, I’ll chime in with my own inspired episodes. But my intention is that the conversations and tools shared in the podcast will inspire and support you on your own magical human journey to owning yourself.
Hi, and welcome to episode seven of the podcast. I am Isha Vela. I am your host, and I am the host and the interviewee today. Normally, I use this podcast platform to showcase and tell the stories of other healers of color as part of normalizing the journey. But the person that I was planning on interviewing didn’t work out. And so I decided to just listen as to what to do. And what I heard was a request for me to bring myself and to bring topics that matter to me once in a while. So I decided that it would be good to do that. My topics that I’m most passionate about our sovereignty and radical embodied devotion. And I’ll talk a little bit more about what those mean to me. But today, I’m going to talk about the rescuer pattern, because Rompereglas are all about breaking patterns, are about living outside of the pattern, outside of the preset paradigm. And the rescuer pattern is one of the most common patterns that I see in healers, connectors, bridge builders, change agents, which are the people that I primarily serve, and it’s a pattern that I’ve maintained for most of my life until my body said no, until I had my full systemic breakdown. There’s nothing like a hard wake up call, right? Thanks to the brick wall, especially for, you know, stubborn people like me. So topics like these are the monthly themes in my online community, Revolutionary Rompereglas, which is opening to new members on March 15. And on March 15, we’re having our free introductory event. And I’m going to put a link to that in the show notes. So we’re going to be practicing some of the foundational skills that I teach. So I’m going to back up and define what I mean when I say sovereignty. I define sovereignty as a state of being in which you’re unhooked from the trappings of your conditioning and your survival patterns. And by unhooked I mean having some space and awareness of the patterns without being compelled to replicate them and recycle them. Okay, so sovereignty is living without addictions, or aversions. There’s nothing to push away, and there’s nothing sort of grabbing at you and pulling at you. So instead of that pulling and grabbing at you, or you pushing them away, you notice the patterns, and you may even feel them in your body, but you choose based on what’s aligned for you, what you desire versus what’s conditioned, and what’s already preset. So your liberation and your freedom lives in the choice to engage it or not engage it. So in the rescuer pattern, which is a bigger pattern of victimhood, which I’ll address briefly later, but the main drive is a devotion to others, right. And that’s sort of how women, or female socialized beings, are conditioned to be in the world is to serve others. That are our purpose is to be here for other people, and especially if we feel called to be healers, you know, our hearts are open to other people, we feel the suffering of other people. So we want to go to other people. But what we don’t learn is to connect to ourselves first, to devote time and energy to our own systems. In our efforts to help others and because of our socialization, and because of our trauma histories, even, there’s a distorted or misguided understanding of what it is to encourage, empower and protect. Some small examples of these would be giving advice to other people, instead of just letting them come to their own conclusions; giving at your own expense, right, we give out and we extract from ourselves in the process; we try to change or fix other people, including our partners; we enable addictions or fragility in other people; we over function for the people who aren’t able to function at optimal levels; we are overly responsible, right, we tell ourselves stories about reasons why things happen and we put an undue weight of responsibility on our own shoulders and another example would be people pleasing. And this is all different from true help, which is giving with no strings attached, no particular agenda, just a real desire to be of service. This rescuer dynamic is often described as a shadow aspect of the mother principle, right, the mother principle is supportive, nurturing, and the rescuer on the other hand tends to help in a way that is controlling and manipulating. For example, helping someone “for their own good” or helping in the way that you believe that they need to be helped. And the rescuer describes sort of the classic codependent, which is – I don’t really love that term but I use it because it’s a term that people understand. So the rescuer tends to be enabling, overprotective, the one who wants to fix it. And the “it” will vary based on the person’s childhood experiences, and I’ll give an example of that also in a few. So rescuing in and of itself is an addiction, and it comes from an unconscious need to feel valued, right, there’s no better way to feel important than to be a savior. Doesn’t that make sense? And taking care of others may be the best game plan for feeling worthy, so just being who you are isn’t enough. That’s the message, right, that’s the underlying feeling. Just being who you are isn’t enough. And so you have to do something, to hustle or get to that worthiness, that worthiness hit, that feeling. So how does this originate? Where does this come from? So rescuers typically grow up in families where dependency needs are not acknowledged. So dependency needs are your needs for connection, belonging, support, love, right, these are negated or rejected and so you tend, we all tend, to treat ourselves with the same negligence that we experienced as children, right, we sort of mirror how we’re treated, we sort of learn, we hold that reality in our own body so we treat ourselves the way that we were treated. And when you’re not cared for, you don’t learn to take care of yourself. You don’t have permission to, essentially. Your needs, they go underground and you turn, instead, to taking care of others. And so what this translates into in the body, because I work with the body primarily, is that you can’t even feel your needs, right? I have had the experience in my own body of really being convinced that I don’t know, I don’t need anything. I’m fine, really I’m fine, but I was completely disconnected from my need and instead I felt everyone else’s stuff and was taking it on. So it took time to really connect with my need and that was a whole processm, and towards the end of this episode I’ll talk a little bit about how you can do that. But going back to the rescuer. The rescuer often gains satisfaction on an egoic level by identifying with their caretaking role, right, you’re socially rewarded by family, by culture, for what is seen as like, selfless acts of caring. And as a rescuer you feel generally proud of what a good helper or a good fixer you are, right, it’s sort of like when you do a good deed, right, there’s this sort of straightening of your spine, it’s like yeah, yeah, right? You did well. And sort of what happens here is that you get a hit of I’m good, I’m good. That’s sort of the special sauce you get a hit of, the good sauce. You see yourself as kind of a heroine, which is fine, but what I have found is actually underneath of that desire or that need to get the hit, the ego it needs to get a hit of goodness, is that you actually don’t feel good at your core and that, in fact, you don’t feel good and there’s a feeling of shame, what’s underneath the need for goodness is shame. I just wanted to say that again, because I want you to just take it in for a moment, pause and feel that. Because what is true in the body pings in the body, right? You will resonance, truth will resonate in the body. And so what I want to say is because we live, most humans live in aversion to shame, it’s not a feeling that we want to feel. So we keep trying to get hits for rescuing others. And for being good. We’re running away from the feelings of shame. We’re constantly trying to hustle and gather experiences of, I’m good, I’m good, I’m good in order to not feel that shame. And behind all of this efforting is the magical belief that might sound like, if I take care of so-and-so long enough, then sooner or later, they’ll take care of me too. And that’s the secret desire. So it’s the, one can call it the child desire, is to be taken care of. So I, I also remember having this belief, except it wasn’t even a real thought. It was, it felt like really far back in my subconscious. And I even used to have rescue fantasies, I used to have fantasies, one can call them desires, where I wanted to just be like, just plucked out of my circumstances and like, you know, somebody would come along, and either they would have money, or they would do this and they would do that and they would love me in a particular way. These are things that exist in us that are not even conscious thoughts, but that are running in the background in the unconscious programming. And so that’s why we work with the body in order to bring those forward so that we can see them and look at them, because you are basically beholden to your patterns if you don’t know what they are. And what I find is that most people are not aware of their patterns. And I certainly wasn’t, you know, eight years ago, when I started this work. So this belief or this desire to be taken care of, rarely happens. So when we rescue people who are needy, or in need of help, we really can’t expect anything in return because they can’t take care of themselves, much less us. And the disappointment of not having our needs met of not being taken care of sends the person in the rescuer pattern into a depression, right, into like a deep disappointment. And this is where the rescuer then falls into this victim role. And this is a hard pill to swallow, like to see yourself in the victim role. You don’t necessarily see immediately how you’ve enabled, and disabled essentially, the person or people that you’ve been helping. Instead, you feel used, you feel betrayed, you feel let down, you feel like a martyr, right? You feel like you’re the victim, you’re in the victim position in this in this bigger dynamic. And the narrative or the stories that you may be telling yourself here is like, after everything that I’ve done for you, this is the thanks that I get? Or no matter how much I do, it is never enough. Or if you love me, you wouldn’t treat me like this. So, phew, just want you to take that in, and see if you’ve told yourself these very same stories. I know that I have. And underneath all of that is the fear, like underneath all of this dynamic, is the fear that you’ll be obsolete if you’re not useful, because you’ve been rewarded for doing – if you don’t do, you just are, it’s not valuable, right. That’s the story in the body, your value and worth as a human being has been defined and reinforced by how much you do for others. And so we look for ways to make ourselves indispensable in order to avoid abandonment. If you need me, in other words, you won’t leave me. The more you rescue, the less those you care for take responsibility for themselves. And the less responsibility they take, the more you rescue. Right? It’s a downward spiral. It’s like a cycle. And this cycle becomes toxic. It ends up crashing and burning. And I know this personally. So trust me when I tell you, it will crash and burn. All right. I’m bringing this all to light because it’s one of the big illusions that healers and helpers grapple with, both in subtle and tiny, covert ways. So here’s an example. Just somebody I’m going to call Clarissa, not a real person. Clarissa’s mother was emotionally fragile, let’s say, and she used alcohol to medicate her anxiety. And so from Clarissa’s earliest memory, she felt ultimately responsible for her mother. She supported her emotionally when she was in need, she cooked for her mother or for the family when her mother couldn’t, and Clarissa became the helper of a mom who played the part of a helpless child. And on top of that, Clarissa’s mother often rewarded her for being such a good helper. Right? Her mother couldn’t see beyond her own needs because she was so full of need and just felt overwhelmed by them, and therefore she couldn’t meet Clarissa’s real child needs. Belonging needs, nurturing needs. So this scenario set Clarissa up with a role of rescuing as a primary way of relating to others. Clarissa’s unconscious beliefs might be, my needs are not important. I’m only valued for what I can do for others. Of course, if you believe that, you’ll draw people into your life that you can rescue, usually a victim, otherwise you don’t feel valuable or worthwhile to have around. True helping, on the other hand, is acting without the expectations for reciprocation. Although, you know, I often teach people that it’s, you know, it’s really nice to have reciprocal relationships. And then once in a while, you’ll give just because you have it to give, and it doesn’t matter, you’re not looking to get reciprocated. So in true helping, you empower rather than disable, those who serve, you encourage self responsibility, rather than promote dependency, you assume that other people can handle their own business, you believe everyone has the right to make mistakes, and that sometimes they need to learn through hard consequences, right? In true helping you trust the other person has what it takes to see themselves through hard times and difficulty without needing to be saved. And you know, this, this type of dynamic often comes up in conversations of white saviorism, right? But it’s less discussed in the dynamics between healer and client, or in the healers’ own life relationships. And when we’re hooked in the rescuer pattern, we’re also hooked into the illusion of being better than, of being one up, and needless. You know, if that’s true for you, there will always be at least one person in your life who is troubled, who is sick, who is fragile, or inept, and therefore dependent on you. So I just want to pause here. And I want you to just scan over your life right now. If there is a fragile person in your life right now, that you’re taking care of, I want you to imagine, close your eyes and imagine what it would feel like if they started taking responsibility for themselves, take a moment to feel that in your body.
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And see if you can notice, a little bit of fear show up. If that person decided to take responsibility for themselves, especially if they are a primary partner, or someone very close to you, that you’re sort of in this dynamic deeply with, you’d have to address your own needs of wanting to be taken care of, you’d have to address a little bit of that shadow, that’s the rescuer shadow that’s operating here. And so the antidote, or the cure, let’s say, is devotion. This is what I teach. In this case, it would be devotion to your own needs, dedication to meeting your own needs. So an example from my own life when I began to go through this process and heal some of the ways that I was rescuing and just in this really toxic pattern, I had to start meeting my own needs, and I had to start actually feeling them. And so, you know, what we would do in my training is that we would, we would bump our, our lower bellies up on a foam cube or, you know, we place our hand there and breathe down into that space. You can do that now as you’re listening. When we started to get in touch with our needs through, you know, breathing exercises and moving the energy and sort of reaching our arms out and saying, I need, I need, there was so much disgust that washed up. And the reason why disgust is often the feeling that comes up is because that was the energy that comes to most of us that had come towards me when I expressed my real childhood needs. You know, I work with a women who are a lot, right, and who are often labeled as being too much. The sensitive mujeres of the world who are on a path to becoming healers or who are healers and are really wanting to do deep, internal work to become sovereign in their life, their relationships, their business. Women who are labeled as too much, right, often have really big needs. You know, this is a beautiful thing, but because we’re often not mirrored in that, we are met with, just too much, it’s like – it’s treated as a burden. Yeah, it’s just, that’s the message we receive is that our needs are too much. And so we bury them, or we shrink them, or we try to get them met through the back door in a sideways fashion, which is what we’re talking about today. When I got in touch with those needs, phew. Those needs felt like the Grand Canyon, they felt so big, they were endless. And, you know, even as I was feeling them, I was like, damn, can I have that much need, like, this feels like it’s never gonna end. And so what I needed to do, and this sounds humorous now, but I went on a mission to, like, as part of this, like dedication to devotion, I would distribute the need, I would be like, okay, so on Monday, I call so and so and whatever. And on Tuesday, I reached out to this person and, and I was really clean about communicating that I was doing this, I was like, I have need, can you meet my need? Or can you meet me in the need? And, you know, at that point, I had people in my life who were, who shared the language, who knew the work, and who I could bring this to. So it’s really important that we have people and communities that are doing that work, or who are deep patterning who are also Rompereglas, to be able to share these processes and practice devotion. What I teach in devotion is that it’s all in the relationship you have to anything and everything inside of you. In other words, radical embodied devotion is the unwavering connection to source within yourself, embracing your shadow, allowing all emotion, allowing all energies and living in your power as a co-creator with life. You know, what I learned as part of meeting my needs, when I began to meet my needs, it was so powerful because I stopped reaching out to other people like from this hungry place. And when I was able to meet myself, I really began to feel the power of my own love. And recognize that all of the love that I thought that I needed to come from other people actually lived inside of me. So if you live or if you identify with the role of the rescuer, it doesn’t mean that you can’t be loving or that you can’t be generous or that you can’t be kind. I also want to say it’s not all of who you are, you can be absolutely helpful and supportive without being a rescuer. And in fact, generosity and attunement to your emotions are your superpowers as a healer. So I’m positing here that you may actually be able to be more generous, when you are in tune with your own needs, when you nourish yourself, when you give to yourself, when your needs are met. And so what I’m offering is that instead of, you know, doing the typical energy cycle of when somebody is in need, we immediately – boom, our energies go out to the other person. Let’s check in with ourselves first. Do I have the energetic, emotional, spiritual, mental capacity to give to somebody else right now? And sometimes the answer will be no. And it’s okay to go with a no, as you may be noticing, has a lot to do with the boundaries that we set with ourselves, as well as the boundaries that we set with other people. And that’s also a separate, a whole separate class that I teach. The first round I just completed in February. And I’ll be teaching another round in the fall. This time, I’m going to make it eight weeks. So stay tuned for that. We need to be able to separate being truly helpful from rescuing. And once you recognize the pattern of rescuing and are able to meet your own needs, you can more keenly discern your motivations, right. And so the way that I connected to my own need was through breathwork. And typically, you know, we live in a in a culture in a society where we we sort of live in our breath from our diaphragms upward. And so, not everybody is built like this, but our culture or you know, sort of like white dominant culture, lives from the from the rib cage upwards. And so what I do is part of connecting to need. Need is often behind our heart, in the body, and often in the space between our belly button, belly button and pubic bone. And so I always invite, usually invite people to breathe down into the belly and just drop the question into your body as you’re breathing. What does my body need today? What do my emotions need today? What kind of nourishment do I need today? So to really actively ask yourself, what it is you need, and then go about meeting the need, and getting support to meet the need. Okay, so that’s it for today’s episode. I again, I’m going to invite you to come to the turn on event for the opening of my online community, Revolutionary Rompereglas. It is a space for healers, connectors, bridge builders, for, you know, magical entrepreneurs, to have a space to really do the work and do the work in a way that is pleasurable. To, you know, when I say do the work, doing the work of alignment, really aligning the will, bringing the unconscious to consciousness. We do this in all types of different ways. We have, you know, two events a month where we do a group processing, after that next we have one monthly group call, we have, you know, other people share their events in the space, once a month, we have a movement event where we process our emotions using our sexual energy. So it really is about activating some of the more dormant energies that we experience in our bodies. And it’s really a whole process of becoming more human. As strange as that sounds. We’re becoming more human. We’re becoming sovereign by unhooking from thought patterns from you know, patterns in our bodies, and bringing brain, body and spirit into alignment. So, definitely register for the free opening event with the link in the show notes. And if you can’t attend live, there’ll be a replay and the doors to the community will be open from March 15 to the end of March. Alright lovelies, see you on the next round of the podcast. Bye. That’s it for today’s episode. I hope this conversation supported you in accessing more of your truth and more of your energy. Remember to hit the subscribe button to get notified of new episodes dropping on the new and full moons of each month. And if you haven’t already, leave us a five star review on iTunes. Make sure that everyone who needs this transmission gets it. See you next time, Rompereglas