All my life I’ve been a fixer – I’ve listened to other people’s problems, felt that I’ve known exactly what they needed to do to resolve their issues, and been convinced that I was right, and then told them what they should do. In doing so I have taken on the responsibility for fixing whatever their problem is. I’ve spent hours thinking about different scenarios of how I could tell them, thinking of all the different things they needed to do to get a perfect result – and in doing so I have been distracted from living my own life.
I still do the fixing at times but nowadays, as I am more connected to how my body is feeling and what it is telling me, I become aware of a backache when I’m in “fixing mode”. What I’ve learnt is that this is my body’s way of telling me that I am ‘putting my back’ into, i.e. working on, something that is none of my business. And that’s not good for me or for them.
It is definitely a work-in-progress for me because I am amazed at how much my body tells me when I am willing to listen, so it feels good to develop that connection, developing my awareness of what I am feeling and sorting my own life out, rather than distracting myself trying to fix anything outside of me.
I’m not saying we should avoid helping anybody with their problems, but in my case, my arrogance in thinking I know what they should do and having no hesitation in telling them so, does not help them, especially if they haven’t asked me for help. And in any case, how I would resolve a problem may not be the way they would resolve it. My taking responsibility for fixing other people’s problems and being so forward with offering ‘solutions’ is not always the best way to support someone.
We all have free will and life is forever reflecting back to us the consequences of our choices; it is then our individual responsibility to learn from each situation. We can choose to be aware of what is going on and do something about it, or not. It is possible that providing solutions to another person does not help them to develop awareness or gain a full understanding of their own situation.
All my life I’ve been a fixer but now I am learning that true compassion is to simply be there, feeling what’s going on, creating a loving space where they can ponder on their own situation and make their own choices. This requires patience, understanding and allowing on my part.
I have practical role models in Serge Benhayon and the many Esoteric Practitioners who have trained with Universal Medicine. I find that their gentle presence always allows me the space to ponder my own issues. By the way they are with me I can experience how it feels to be truly helped with loving, tender care and the utmost respect. Not by telling anyone what to do or by trying to fix their problems, but by simply living in a way that offers a clear reflection for another.
Inspired by the work of Serge Benhayon and Universal Medicine
By Carmel Reid, Somerset UK
876 thoughts on “All My Life I’ve Been a Fixer”
I love this statement, ‘that true compassion is to simply be there, feeling what’s going on, creating a loving space where they can ponder on their own situation and make their own choices’. And in that, what ever choice they make is correct for them, however we perceive it to be is a different matter, and when we perceive it with pictures, ideals and beliefs, then we are imposing. Giving them the space is honouring of their choices and a learning opportunity for them too, it is that simple.
The most beautiful gift is when we see another step up to the responsibility of doing things for themselves and in a loving way.
“fixing” other people’s problems is a convenient escape or distraction from having to deal with our own.
‘Fixing’ only satisfies that, that is within us that identifies us. Allowing them space is bringing in the responsibility.
I love this blog Carmel as it is exposing for any of us that are good at stepping in to ‘help’ another – we need to ask if this is actually what is needed, and if this is for our own feeling of being useful?
From an outside perspective, it is usually easier for us to see what it is that someone might need to do to resolve a situation – however, there is an arrogance in stepping in and doing this for another especially if they have not called out for support or are not ready for the change. Imagine others stepping in to ‘fix’ our lives when we are quiet content or comfortable with how it is? This is an imposition and is not true help on the long run.
Holding and supporting another in love gives them space to make their own choices, whereas imposing your solution denies them the space to take responsibility and grow.
I love this comment Mary, simple and to the point, saying it exactly how it is.
I’ve recently realised I’ve been in a false form of mothering others, and it is stepping in to do it for others, instead of giving the space for others to find their own way through life, and to find their own answers. Part of realising this came from an Esoteric Breast Massage session where I felt my sacredness, and it highlighted how settled I feel in the sacredness and how much I disliked attending to other people’s needs in this reactive way of helping and ‘support’. Sacredness really just leaves people to be. What I was able to feel from my body was how much I didn’t want to take on others issues as a child, but the ideal of being a ‘good girl’ was used (and encouraged by others) to override this. Being able to nominate this has been a wonderful new beginning to reconnect not just to my sacredness, but to how I truly feel and to what choices I would make from my true self.
I can relate with what you have shared Melinda, I used to step in to help fix another instead of giving them space to find their own answers; and how you got to sacredness just leaves people to be, beautiful.
Looking back over my life I can see very clearly that I used to feel fulfilled if I was able to fix someone’s problem, but today I can see that it was simply a need for recognition that was driving most of the fixing. But what I didn’t realise at the time is that by fixing for others, I was not only judging that they couldn’t do it, but that also, I was denying them the opportunity to fix it for themselves in whatever way they felt to and so they were missing out on growing their own confidence. I still feel fix-it mode sneaking in every now and then but these days I clock it and stop it in its tracks.
Yes, I can still feel fix-it mode try and sneak in; I am more aware of it, and how harming it is, so I call it out and say no to it much quicker.
Beautiful awareness Ingrid – and so true how dis-empowering it is for another when we step in to do it for them.
It is great you are developing your awareness in order to support yourself and others with more clarity and less imposition.
‘We all have free will and life is forever reflecting back to us the consequences of our choices’, yes indeed and sometimes the reflection is a big ouch, but if we do not avoid the reflection and instead accept and swallow the pill so to speak, we get the awareness or an inner knowing of our next steps as we are always fully supported to be more.
I can relate to being a ‘fixer’ in my life and I can now feel how imposing that is on another, for me it came from a lack of acceptance and appreciation of another’s choices. I have learnt over the years that being loving with myself first and foremost allows me to be with others in a very beautiful and natural way and there is no need to ‘fix’ or change another. What we offer others with our reflection is more powerful than any knowledge or empty words we may say.
I agree Anna, reflections are silently powerfully and revealing that initially we can wobble a little because they are so revealing, and very exposing, but in the exposure there is always the opportunity to evolve if we accept the expansion (and or the lesson) on offer.
Being a ‘fixer’ is a great way to seek recognition and ‘feel good’ one I can relate to have invested in. However, as you have so brilliantly shared our bodies will always reflect the truth of what we are investing in, if it truly supports us to be ourselves and evolve. When in ‘fix it’ mode I am never being myself and feeling drained, exhausted and frustrated was not uncommon. Offering a reflection of what is true from our Livingness is far more empowering, inspirational and powerful in every aspect.
Our bodies reflect the truth of what we are investing in, ‘fix it’ mode never left my body feeling good, whereas, ‘Offering a reflection of what is true from our Livingness is far more empowering, inspirational and powerful in every aspect.’
As humans we are very mastered at ‘doing’ and not so mastered at ‘being’. It is quite remarkable how our obsession with ‘doing’, overrides our being. Hence why we busy ourselves creating problems or taking on those of others simply so we can devote a great deal of time to ‘finding a solution’ rather than removing ourselves from this equation completely and supporting others through our beingness (our ability to remain connected with ourselves in all that we do).
It feels great to become more aware of when we simply live our life, or maybe a better word is love, we reflect our essence loud and clear. This is what offering space is, we don’t have to DO anything.
Yes agreed – beautifully said Annelies. When we simply offer a reflection of what is true through our Soulful way of being, the love we are, we never impose on another as to what should be done. It is simply an offering or reflection of the vibration of love, the truth of who we equally are in essence to be felt.
I have had several huge lessons around the fact that sometimes I “don’t have to DO anything” but instead simply be present. I was offered this lesson by a man I work for, who shared that just me being there with him was all the inspiration he needed to get something he had been avoiding, finally underway; that I didn’t have to do anything but just be there. Big lesson, from a most unexpected source, but oh so very welcome.
The thing is that we can’t actually fix things for someone else, we may be able to make things look better temporarily, but we can’t learn a lesson for them or initiate change for them, the best way to help someone is to stand and know who you are and inspire them to also know they are amazing.
However much we may feel we know what will ‘fix’ another, in truth the only person who can do the fixing is oneself.
Helping others to resolve their issues is nothing problematic in principle. Yet, if by virtue of this, we swim in issues all the time, how do we know that other people’s issues end up in our body? What is our primary activity, the explicit one (helping others) or the implicit one (poisoning ourselves)?
I too have tried to help out, meddling in other peoples problems… it is a double edged sword. On the one hand its exhausting because we are trying all the time, and equally how are we going to in truth fix something if we are not living it in full ourselves?
Very good point, I think there is also a difference between “help” and “support” – support is always there for someone but gives them the space and grace to pick themselves up, whereas help interferes and tries to do it for them without understanding that whatever problem or issue at hand will only make them stronger once they have mastered it.
This reminds of a time when I started a new job, and my shoulder/arm started being in a lot of pain. I sought medical advice, physio and also Universal Medicine practitioner to understand what was going on energetically. The GP and the physio gave me exercises and I came to the understanding that I was trying to fix the situation, shouldering the industry, and hence my shoulder went out. The body shares it’s wisdom when we take on what is not ours to take on.
We cannot make choices for anyone else because our bodies have not lived what they have lived.
I’m seeing with friends and family and especially with my two teenage sons that we can never do it for anyone else, we are the only ones that can make changes in our lives from our body and it is imposing when we push our ways on to them. When I take responsibility for anothers choices and lives it hurts my body and I feel it straight away. How awesome our bodies are for showing us.
How much do I relate to this?! So much, my pull to be a fixer is quite incredible really – always looking at what I can do to fix things and yet I’m starting to really enjoy not having to fix things!
I agree – telling people what to do does not help anyone. We can hide in doing and it gives us stimulation, a momentary satisfaction of ‘I am doing good’. We are responsible for what we are reflecting to others, but not responsible for others’ choices. Sympathy is another way for us not to be with ourselves and our purpose.
Every day I get another opportunity to deepen my relationship with the word ‘Surrender’, letting go of the need to control, the need to be right and the need to create any pictures of how life should or could be. Surrendering to the What Is in every moment and feeling what is appropriate to do in every situation.
Thanks Carmel for your sharing, I can add that for me the surrendering has been about allowing myself to be me in situations, instead of doing something (like fixing) and losing me… a work in progress!
I have spent a great deal of time in the past trying to help others and find solution to their problems, I know now that I was imposing on them and not allowing them the space to come to their own understanding and awareness around their own situation.
It’s a huge learning Anna, something I am still working on. I found the Women In Livingness workshop (2019) by Natalie Benhayon has really supported me to be in my power with others and support them to find their own answers… instead of jumping in to help like I’ve always done and imposing.
Being convinced we are right is already a dead giveaway for being wrong or at least not true!
Ha, well said Nicola. ‘Right’ and ‘wrong’ are simply divisive tools we use to not remain true in all that we do.
Reading this has been helpful because I have been suffering from a backache for the past two weeks, off and on. It never occurred to me that by going into solution mode to fix a problem the back could go – something to explore here.
I have just realised that in one of my volunteering roles there is a great tendency to be ‘nice’ by being helpful, which feels yucky. There is a definite level of appropriate help that is supportive but too much and it is laden with ‘please like me’ which is totally imposing. I have had many sessions with universal medicine Esoteric practitioners and they are such great role models for allowing me to make my own decisions – they offer very clear reflections that help me to see the consequences of my choices but they never tell me what to do.
A great reminder Carmel that we can actually impose and compromise anothers development by compensating and fixing something for them that they need to learn for themselves.
I too have been a fixer thinking that being helpful was a good thing, but I realised my identity was tied up in being a helper, and in that way of being with people I was avoiding my own responsibility and taking over another’s responsibility, and in doing that was preventing them from learning their own lessons in their own way.
I have this addiction to being ‘helpful’ taking on everyone’s problems – I am way better than I used to be but I caught myself at it again only this morning. It was only when my friend said, ‘Thanks, i prefer to do it my way’ that I realised what I’d done, so it was a beautiful reflection.
‘Problems’ and their subsequent ‘solutions’ come from the same pool of energy we draw on when we do not want to live true to the simplicity that is on offer when we live life from our heart and not our head.
When we charge into another’s situation in ‘fixer’ mode we are simply getting in the way of them learning the lesson that is being presented. It is not our lesson and if we make it so we are taking on a responsibility that is not ours; our actions are therefore harming not healing.
Yes when we try to fix it for another we have already taken on their issue and we have an investment in how we want them to be, if they don’t fit into line with that, then we can have a judgement in the form of all of which is not love.
Interesting how it quickly spirals, showing there is a lot more at play than the problem in front of us… there is a whole way of living that can include a cornucopia of judgement, arrogance, being right, trying and so on. Life is not meant to be complicated, and the way to connect to that simplicity is through the body.
Letting go of the ‘fix it’ drive and offering another the opportunity to be responsible for their own decisions equally offers ourselves the awareness to not try and ‘fix’ ourselves but to feel what is true.
That is beautiful Carmel. When I am given space and love I start to feel myself again and know what to do with my problem or in some cases just by feeling my inner spark again the whole problem is not a problem anymore anyway!
Being a fixer and making of that a way of life, only guarantees choosing a fix point from which we do not want to walk away.
Giving another the space to come to their own awareness and understanding is a very beautiful way for anyone to unfold gracefully an din their own time.
Thank you Carmel – that is very openly described. It offers the other person space and to come to their realizations and clarity if we live and breathe that – that is then their reflection (the best help we can show them)..
I think its a common disease we have, wanting to fix the problems of others. At least it certainly was for me growing up. Or rather not so much offering solutions…instead trying to absorb the pain of others so they didn’t have to feel it so much. Boy did that take a massive toll on my body. I’ve learnt now that there is another way to support people that actually works rather than trying to numb them out. And that’s to allow them to feel for themselves what’s going, and not to interfere. Be there to listen and support but not get involved and try to save the world. It never ends well.
I was always trying to fix my family even in primary school, thinking I knew better. I didn’t always voice it but I would try to make things better for everyone… just another form of fixing that goes unnoticed at times.
Gorgeously shared Carmel. And as you have wisely said – ‘…by simply living in a way that offers a clear reflection for another…’ – this is how we truly offer support to another. For when we go into ‘fix it’ mode, which I do know all about, we engage in a behaviour that conveniently distracts us from bringing awareness to how we ourselves are living, and imposes on others the pressure to fit into an outcome.
Also sometimes things do not need fixing , its just that the person observing from their judgement thinks it need fixing and therefore interfere with the natural process of free will of life and learning.
So true that trying to fix anything actually does not work, but as you say, when we provide a space in which people can come to their own understanding is much more powerful and actually a way to be with everybody we meet.
” It is possible that providing solutions to another person does not help them to develop awareness or gain a full understanding of their own situation ” This is very important , people have their own learning to receive and when people interfere with this process , trying to be good or do good ,the learning takes longer for the person.
So true John. Attempting to fix another’s problems is fraught with danger. We all have life lessons to learn and every one need space – and time – to deal with it for themselves – but with support of course. As you say if we jump in trying to sort it they haven’t learned the lesson – so it will return again at some point in their life. A wasted opportunity in that moment for them to evolve. For myself too, all I want is to share my issue’ – to be listened to, not for someone to tell me what in their opinion I ‘should’ do.
Solutions are rife in society and for a solution seeker a problem fixer is the perfect person to find because a fixer is not offering true answers only providing ways of avoiding responsibility
Trying to fix another’s issue is purely a reaction to seeing them reflecting back an issue we have not truly dealt with and healed.
It is so easy to get trapped into fix it mode but what you share here is super important. To allow another space is vital to thier choices of living and what happens next, it can only come from within.
Trying to fix people and things around us is a form of control so we feel better, but has it really just kept us away, or diverted us from looking at and healing our own problems.
Great point Lorraine. Trying to control any situation, to meet any outcome, is a huge dishonoring and capping of what the real and true potential is in that moment.
It a good way to look at it Ariana – stop trying to fix everything else, just take responsibility for ourselves first and then we can feel everything that is going on. Such a better place to be coming from when we do then engage with the world.
Just give me a problem and I will don my armour, grab the tool belt and get stuck in… do I take a moment to read why something has happened, to learn something from the situation? More so now than ever, and yet there is so much more still to read in life.
You’ve just reminded me Carmel of how often someone will not directly ask for help for me, but instead complain about a situation, and I will always try and offer solutions or offer another perspective that I think would help them. However, none of that works if the other person is purely unloading and not willing to take any responsibility for what’s going on for them…and hence me trying to solve/fix the problem is a drain on my energy and a disrespect to them by way of not allowing them the space to come to it themselves.
Just reading some of the comments here really supports me to see that when we fix things we are trying to control the impossible. We all need to learn the lesson the world brings to us and trying to control everything just delays the inevitable learning. I hadn’t really understood it but your blog and all the comments really gave me so many different angles to look at it from it is now embedded in my consciousness!!
I am interested to see if my body will give me the gift of this reflection! I know I have had back ache in situations I least expect it and I often wonder what that is about. Now I will consider if I am putting my back into something that is none of my business…very possible I suspect so a great lesson to learn.
I have read this a few times Carmel and it’s positively brilliant! I was very mature as a teen and a lot of the kids would come to me for advice, I found it overwhelming actually, it set up a pattern of being there for people and responding a certain way instead of feeling what was right for me and then for them each time. This was also a great line “It is possible that providing solutions to another person does not help them to develop awareness or gain a full understanding of their own situation.” So true, thanks Carmel.
Well summed up Carmel. “We can choose to be aware of what is going on and do something about it, or not.” Choosing to be aware gives us a greater understanding of life, each other and who we are. We ‘fix’ others through the reflection of our own livingness and awareness – the beauty we hold and retain. This speaks louder than words.
“….their gentle presence always allows me the space to ponder my own issues. By the way they are with me I can experience how it feels to be truly helped with loving, tender care and the utmost respect. Not by telling anyone what to do or by trying to fix their problems, but by simply living in a way that offers a clear reflection for another.” This is beautiful – and magic. Telling others what to do doesn’t work – even telling myself what to do doesn’t work!. But appreciation and loving connection can melt away the resistance I and others may have.
Yes Rik, choosing to become aware of what is going on sure gives us a greater understanding. Feeling we need to ‘fix’ others carries a whiff of judgement – something I definitely used to be guilty of.