Summer in Sutton

Between 28th July and 25th August, our Sutton service won’t be meeting at Bandon Hill, but instead will be visiting local churches in the area and having some fun social events as a community. Visit the Facebook page to find out more.

Stories from…STEPS // Martin

We asked a recent STEPS attendee to tell us about his experience of the course.

I decided to do STEPS because despite lots of therapy, I was continually struggling with a fear of rejection, which presented itself through people pleasing, taking too much responsibility for others, low self esteem and a strong feeling of powerlessness. I felt that I had nothing to lose by doing STEPS, but in all honesty I couldn’t envisage how things could be different for my life.

The journey has been surprising. I liked the fact that the course was structured, but at the same time I was frustrated that my recovery wasn’t (and isn’t) structured. I treated it like a tick box exercise which I needed to make sure I completed. Halfway through the process it dawned on me that my recovery isn’t all down to me. This amongst other things led to me having a profound experience of God’s unconditional love and acceptance of me. I had never had an experience like it in almost thirty years of believing in God. Since that point I have continued to feel that I wanted to hurry up and be ‘sorted’, but I am gradually understanding that a key part of recovery for me is being OK with not being OK, and trusting that I am in God’s hands.

I feel much more secure and accepting of who I am now. For the first time my identity is beginning to feel like it is based on what God says rather than what others say. I am learning to be more honest about my needs and clearer about boundaries with other people. I still people please, but I’m more aware of my behaviour and I feel able to reflect and change my behaviour more easily without facing never-ending cycles of self criticism.

For the first time I feel like my thought patterns and behaviours are changing. In the past I’ve tried to stick a plaster over my pain and hurt. Doing the STEPS course has enabled me to dig deeper into the source of the pain in a safe, structured environment and I can honestly say I have come away having experienced healing and a new hope for my future. My ongoing journey of recovery hasn’t felt linear: many times where I’ve been face to face with my struggles I’ve wondered whether STEPS was actually helping, but looking back I know wholeheartedly that it was.

 

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