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We Repeat What We Don’t Repair

By Christine Coyle | August 23, 2022

“The healer’s gift is her own wound. It’s the source of empathy and true understanding of compassion and forgiving. To heal thyself, embrace your wound as your sacred teacher. “  

I came across this quote recently and it stopped me in my tracks:

“We repeat what we don’t repair.”

And it was like a lightbulb went off. Yes, of course we do!

Recently, I got caught up in the “how did I not know that” mentality while in my own therapy session and something finally clicked for me:

When we are not in a place to receive something, it will not land for us. When we allow ourselves to be authentically vulnerable and open ourselves up to healing, we are more likely to let something in that we could not accept before.

This is not to say that any progress you made prior to this realization was for nothing. It’s all part of the process and healing journey.

If you know me, you know that I’m a strong advocate for taking care of your mental health. When a therapist is engaged in their own process of healing, all bets are off. Therapists are in the helping profession. However, they cannot be their own helper, they cannot be their own therapist. When a therapist becomes a client, it requires a conscious shift in their role. An approach or modality from which a therapist has received extensive training or something they know well can suddenly have new meaning when they are hearing it as the client. Therapists have to remind themselves that they don’t know it all and need to be open to learning from another provider.

Taking care of mental health looks different for each person. For me, it’s about giving myself permission to rest without feeling guilty and unlearning that it needs to be earned, communicating my needs assertively, and becoming more aware of how my nervous system responds to triggers. All of this is to say the ultimate goal is to discontinue use of patterns that no longer serve me.

It can be frustrating when changes don’t happen quickly and with therapy there is no quick fix. It is possible to change behavior, to untangle ourselves from maladaptive patterns, to repair and to heal. This takes time. It takes energy. It takes practice. It takes self-love. Be gentle with yourself. 

It’s a marathon not a sprint.


This blog was written by Christine Coyle, LCSW-C
Co-Owner of Anchored Hope Therapy, LLC

Find Christine on Social Media:
IG: @the_vulnerabletherapist
Facebook: @the_vulnerabletherapist
TikTok: the_vulnerabletherapist

Find Anchored Hope on Social Media:
IG @anchoredhopetherapyllc
Facebook @anchoredhopetherapy
TikTok: anchoredhopetherapyllc

About The Author

Christine Coyle

This blog was written by Christine Coyle, LCSW-C, the co-founder of Anchored Hope Therapy, LLC. Christine believes that building therapeutic rapport and creating a collaborative relationship are among the most important aspects of therapy. A client working with her may not jump right into what is traditionally considered “therapy” but instead, we will spend time working towards a mutual understanding of what works best for them. She allows clients to decide if the environment she has created feels safe for them to heal. Her goal with clients is to provide them with time and space to find their voice, identify boundaries that work for them, and to heal from the challenges they may be facing.