Codependency is a hot topic right now online in our space.
I have long considered myself an expert at codependency because I am an expert codependent. Often I feel like I’m a “recovered” codependent but I realize that it takes constant practice and checking of myself to make sure I’m not taking responsibility for others’ feelings. Though through years of therapy, I’ve gotten pretty good at this. It’s been a necessity for many reasons in my personal life. Of course, these codependency coping strategies are important in business as well.
Recently I’ve seen posts about codependent work relationships- especially in the coach/mentor-mentee realm. But this part of codependency is more about wanting to be needed and fix everything– instead of empowering the mentee to learn how to problem solve on their own without the coach/mentor eventually. It’s so easy for me to throw shade– of COURSE, coaches should WANT their charges to be able to grow and problem solve without them!
But here’s my realization: I’m guilty of this, too! I’ve had this satisfaction for being needed to put out fires for my clients. Of course, some roles are in business are necessary to put out the fires and it’s not necessarily an unhealthy thing. For me though, it’s not how I work best. I need space and to work in short-term bursts to teach my clients the systems and help them find the right people so that their businesses can in fact run WITHOUT me.
For me, it’s recognizing that this wanting to be needed and to “rescue” is a pattern of my long engrained codepency. I’ve often thought that it was merely my wanting to take responsibility for others’ feelings– and I’m realizing that another part of it (in my own brain hole) is the desire to be needed. Recognizing this (without judgement- well, trying to recognize without judgement) and calling it what it is feels oddly fine. It’s another aspect of codependency that I’ll practice grappling with! I think that’s what made it a little sad for me to step away for maternity leave– these businesses I’ve been working with are running so well withOUT me! But that was the point of my work– setting up my people for success to run without me 🙂
Does this resonate with you? Are there aspects of codependency that are recently coming to your awareness? Join the conversation on Instagram.
PS If you’re looking for a resource to deal with codependency, Codependent No More my Melanie Beatty really helped me in the beginning. (This is mainly aimed at people in relationships with people who abuse substances- this can be a huge source of codependent behavior)