We often do things unconsciously to preserve our memories of precious people who have gone before us. Sometimes, remembrance takes the form of bad habits that we need to break. But how can you stay connected with your departed loved ones without getting yourself stuck?

My name is Dr. Debi Silber, and welcome to another exciting episode of A Dose of Dr. Debi.

Today, we will be discussing how you can be intentional in incorporating new beliefs and behaviors into your routine while maintaining that deep connection with your loved ones.

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In This Episode

  • Find out how people keep their pain alive
  • Understand the root cause of some bad habits
  • Learn how to get unstuck and move forward


Hi there, welcome to another Dose of Dr. Debi. So this was coming up within The PBT Institute with some of our members and I’m wondering if it’s something that may be happening to you. I  want to make sure I share it so this way, if it’s something you’re doing, you know why.

Have you ever felt like you’re stuck, you feel so stuck, you’re doing the work, you’re trying to change your beliefs, you’re trying to incorporate these new habits into your routine and there is just something about it that no matter what you do, you cannot move forward? And what happens is you keep trying these new things, you keep getting aggravated and discouraged and thinking; “I don’t get it. I’m doing everything, why am I still stuck?”

Well here’s something that I’ve found and this is my over 30 years of coaching. I have seen this come up a few times, and I’m wondering if it’s something you may be doing. I remember years ago when I was working with someone and she explained this version of herself she wanted to be. Beautiful, fit, healthy, successful. I mean it was this amazing image. I asked her where she was right now, and she described herself and she wasn’t really eating well, she didn’t have the best belief system in place, she was settling for relationships and work that she wasn’t really happy about. And she smoked cigarettes. I asked her; “What’s up with the cigarettes? That version of you that you described, I can’t imagine that version of you smoking cigarettes.”

She didn’t know either, and she was really stuck so I started diving deeper and I said; “Tell me about your about your relationships.” And she started talking and I know I’m probing deeper and trying to get to the root of things, and all of a sudden she starts talking about her mom and her mom passed away from lung cancer from smoking. 

I remember at that very moment, thinking to myself, Hmm, I wonder if she’s smoking as almost to keep that bond. And that legacy going. So before I had a chance to stop myself, I blurted it out and I said; “Do you think you’re smoking has anything to do with your mom?” And she looked at me, it was that deer in the headlights look and I know we’re onto something. And I kept going and I said; “Well, would your mom want you to smoke? And she said; “Absolutely not.” And we realized, she was grieving and mourning the loss of her mom and it was almost like if she kept smoking, that would continue that bond.

So we don’t want to break those bonds, if that’s all we have left. So I shifted the conversation and asked: “What would happen if, instead of the bond, being that you continue to smoke, what would it be like if instead, in honor of your mom, you stopped smoking? So, it still had to do with her mom, it still had to do with that deep connection, but now she’s doing something really positive with it instead of really something negative.

It was the last cigarette she ever smoked.

And it came up again recently where one of our members was stuck, just so stuck doing all the work, doing all the right things, and just stuck. And so I brought this up again. And it was a family issue going way, way, way back where playing a certain role, and acting in a certain way, would keep this legacy alive. And so then I asked; “Now that this person is on the other side, would they want you playing small would they want you staying safe would they want you not living the best of your ability and becoming your highest and best? “Well of course not.”

“So what if, instead of keeping that bond going by keeping those beliefs going, and even though that’s all we have left with that person, we keep ourselves, sort of locked in our own cage because this is, this is what we have and we don’t want to eliminate and, get rid of that bond we have with them. What if instead we did this in honor of them.”

It was one of those experiences again where I just saw her face light up. And I knew at that moment, that was one of the biggest needle movers that was keeping her stuck in Stage three, talking about the five Stages from betrayal to breakthrough. That’s what was keeping her stuck in Stage three, and having her move right into stage four. I see this with so many people all the time. We’re not staying stuck because we want to. Sometimes we need the tools, we need the resources. we need just the insight or shift. Sometimes we just needed it to be bad enough, I did two TEDx talks and I remember talking about this and the first one, Sop Sabotaging Yourself saying that when the pain of where you are, becomes greater than the fear of the unknown, that’s when we jump. And that’s when we make those changes and sometimes it takes, pain, sometimes it takes realization, sometimes it takes, insight, sometimes it just takes being so sick of your own story, whatever it is, it’s all good, as long as you take a look and make those changes that can support you.

So, just a classic reason why we stay stuck that can be a little bit hidden and we may not really know, and I’ve seen it many times, so I wanted to be sure to share that with you. Speaking of Stage three, the new book: From Hardened to Healed: The Effortless Path to Release Resistance, Get Unstuck and Create a Life You Love, is now available, and we created a really fun quiz, to go along with that, which is to see which force of nature, you are, and it will. It’s the most simple quiz ever, and you will know exactly where you are within those five Stages and then I will guide you appropriately based on exactly where you land. I really invite you to take the quiz and you’ll find that it healedorhardenedquiz.com So just go to healedorhardenedquiz.com

Take that quiz and find out which force of nature you are. And it may be really enlightening for you. So if you’re stuck, there’s usually a good reason for it. And, you know, it’s, here’s where those traumas are the greatest shakeups because they invite us to question everything, but sometimes it is just that new idea that new insight that new awareness. So, if that’s what’s going on with you, where you were keeping the pain alive, keeping the bad habit, alive, keeping the staying stuck alive now you know because of that tie you have with that person.

What would happen if you turned it into the honoring of that person where you’re doing something really positive, with that scenario. Just like I mentioned with my client with the cigarettes. So, I hope that helps, again, take that quiz so you see which force of nature you are, and you got to find that at healedorhardenedquiz.com . I’ll see you next time.


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