The hard parts no one talks about when you are a natural, “fixer.”
There have been many times in my life that I struggled to put the puzzle back together, give the others that calming sense that everything was okay, while I fell apart inside- knowing I only fixed it for them.
No one talks about how much internal and mental struggle you face and take on when you fix others issues, or at least strive to do so.
So, I am going to shed some light on this topic, as it is something I face everyday.
There are going to be a few bullet points on the main ideas and feeling I want to focus on.
- The sadness. Ah, the word, “sad.” You may use this word to describe your feelings or witnessing an event that made you feel, sad. I am directly speaking about the kind of sadness that weighs on you. The sadness you can actually feel, and to be frank, the sadness that causes you pain. You know the feeling, you made someone else feel better, but you are left with the bearing weight of sadness; because, nothing was fixed for you. You are left feeling empty.
- Emptiness. This connects directly with sadness. You have an emptiness inside of you, because no one else does for you, what you do for them. You strive, reach, pray…. and: fix. At the end of the day, you are left feeling very empty. Where were the people I helped today, they are not here for me tonight. I am empty.
- Anger. This has been a feeling I have felt for most of my short life. I become angry. I am angry that no one else tries to help me as much as I help them. I am angry that I go out of my way to help and soothe others; but when I need it, I am alone. This causes the feeling of not knowing how to cope, resulting in anger.
Since we discussed some of the feelings that a fixer may feel, let’s focus on some copping skills and tools to help you alleviate some of these intense emotions.
- Peopoe make their own beds. Let them lay in it. This is easier said than done, but trust me- if someone caused the issues they are facing, it is not your responsibility to take away this pain. You may offer advice and suggestions, but taking on the emotions and feelings will never be your responsibility.
- You are not a sponge. Dealing with your own emotions will always be enough. Whether it is happiness, sadness, anger, envy or joy- you are only responsible to manage your emotions. This is no one else’s duty. It goes the same vise versa.
- You are your first priority. This is the hardest one of all as a natural fixer. You see someone sad, happy or angry, and your first instinct is to investigate and find the root of the issue and simply, fix it. Don’t. You and you only are first. No one else will ever be, because at the end of each week, you live with it. You take on these emotions, and you must always be first. If you let someone else come ahead of your own personal well being, you will fail. You will fail every time in ignoring your own duties and everyday activities. You matter most.
As a fixer, these emotions and solutions are very hard to deal with- in fact, they seem practically, impossible. But, with small steps, you will lead into the right direction.
The healthiest part to combatting this self issue, is to create boundaries with family and friends. Again, you are not a sponge. Those emotions are not your responsibility or duty to fix. The only person you will ever help to fix or make stronger, is yourself.
This is your life. Make the best of it.