Author Archives: Sigi Lange

Are you truly apart from Apartheid?

Are you truly apart from Apartheid?

Feel Free to watch the 5 minute You Tube Video or gain even more insight by reading this extended article I wrote due to a request I received afterward. The insights within are applicable in many corporate traumatic experiences of world history. I trust you will also be able to be apart from the atrocities of your past with this information and not a part of it.

A system as penetrating and destructive as apartheid was left many individuals impacted in their own unique way. One of the tragedies of our time is that the lack of understanding of a concept I call emotional debt leaves massive amounts of people still in the clutches of apartheid in some way.

Today I would like to ask you if you are 100 % sure that you are truly apart FROM apartheid or are you still a part OF apartheid in some way? Before you answer consider the image that comes to your mind when someone says the word apartheid. What emotion does it evoke? What impact does this emotion have on your future? You see, your emotions are the catalysts for behaviors and your behaviors determine how you succeed or fail in your future. So, do not be to fast to dismiss the impact of apartheid on you. Allow yourself the opportunity today to free yourself from the apartheid system for good. May these few pages truly drive you toward being good.

When I think of apartheid, I immediately think of my friend John that tried to explain to me how it was to grow up in the apartheid era as a black child. He used many stories, the one that stuck was of a time he wanted to go play n a park and a sign said no blacks and no dogs allowed. Imagine he shared the same stories with his son Joe. All three of us where and are at risk of never being apart from apartheid and becoming a part of apartheid once more in our own unique way.

This happens because of emotional debt. Emotional Debt is positive and negative things in our past that steal from our future. Emotional debt has 5 different levels which I explain in depth in my book “Emotionally Debt Free”. One of the levels of emotional debt is called faceless, because it has no specific person connected to it and has therefore no face connected to it. This could be a nation, a tribe, a type of person or even a system like Apartheid. Today still 3 types of people are not able to be apart from apartheid and become a part of apartheid. These 3 types of people are:

  • The Victims, these are the people that lived within the apartheid era and suffered because of the systems that had been imposed by it.
  • The Perpetrators, these people could either be those that physically discriminated toward people within this era or they could just be individuals that feel a deep sense of guilt toward the victims of the system since they identify with the group that where perpetrators within that time.
  • The Born Frees, these are individuals that never experienced apartheid officially. They where not even alive when the system was in place. These individuals can be on the victim or the perpetrators camp. Since they keep the grudge against the apartheid system it eventually steals from them in some way and ironically is repeated in their lives without them even being aware of this.

The victims, like John that experienced oppression, are in danger of holding a deep grudge towards the perpetrators of the system or the system themselves. This would cause the following:

  • Anger because of the injustice that keeps them caught in a victim mentality and a reason for them failing. Due to this attitude they never break free from the injustice of the system and by default experience the injustice many years after the injustice had been experienced. This would leave them feeling helpless. Or
  • Anger towards the type of person that is perceived as the perpetrator would cause him to move away from people due to their skin color. This would make him part of the apartheid system again, since he separates himself from them again.
  • Anger toward the system. This could cause him to be disgruntled and prevent him from moving on successfully. He would continuously complain about the system and hurts due to that.

luckily John wrote off that debt otherwise he would not have been able to be my friend. Because he wrote off the debt he could truly be apart from apartheid and try to help me understand the impact that the system had on him in a way that did not make me feel guilty. John could have a good relationship with people that could be perpetrators of the apartheid system and thereby he was offered the opportunity to be freer.

The perpetrators, like myself who, although I never agreed or participated consciously, could have felt a deep debt towards people with a darker skin color due to the stories John shared and thereby fall into a slave relationship with these people. Now in a slave relationship 3 things are always true:

  • Love is replaced by duty. Love is not possible.
  • The person in this relationship will always rebel against the other person.
  • The person in this relationship will always be on the lookout for an option to run away.

The day that John shared the stories with me I was in danger of falling into such a slave relationship towards him and all persons with a darker skin color than I have. This would result in me not being able to love people with a darker skin color I would only feel a deep duty towards them. This would cause me to feel captured in this relationship. Secondly, I would start to rebel against people with a darker skin color. I would become convinced that people with darker skin color only exploit people like me. I would start feeling a resentment toward that type of a person. Thirdly, I would run away by pulling away from them and recreate apartheid in my life.

Luckily John had written off the debt the apartheid system had and he was able to share the stories around  the harsh environment he had to live in without any rejection or manipulation. This helped me to write off the debt that threatened my freedom at that moment. I wrote off the debt I felt toward all people with a darker skin color and therefore was able to love, connect and build strong relationships with people of all skin colors. Today I am truly free from apartheid.

The Born Frees (born after apartheid had been abolished), like Jo they  are also in danger of being a part of apartheid if he does not write off the debt that he might feel the system has he might feel a deep grudge against people with a lighter skin color, next he would pull away from them and create the apartheid system in his life.

Another way the system steels from this group is by creating an expectation that they might be discriminated against. Recently I spoke to a young man that was convinced that he could not get a loan from a local bank because he was, and I quote “black”. Because of the debt that the system has with this group they expect discrimination and therefore never look at the alternative possibility that the reason for their experience might not be related at all to their race.

Some might ask how this is possible he never was in the system how can it have a debt with him. You see emotional debt steals where it is kept. It does not need a valid reason.   Many people walk around with a deep hatred for a specific group of people even though they never experienced anything bad at their hand. The emotional debt steals from the future of these people, even without any experience. I have often counselled people that could not understand the hatred of certain people toward them and I had to explain to them that emotional debt does not need a wrongdoing it just needs a perception. This perception steals from the place it is kept.

May Jo be just as lucky as John and I and not be a part of apartheid but be apart from apartheid.

Apartheid, just as atrocities of various wars has deep incisions in ones’ mind and memory. These incisions can only heal if a true willing attempt is made to write them off.

 

Writing off emotional debt

Many people have tried to write off emotional debt and failed because of the following reasons:

  • They tried to resolve it in their minds and their mind prevented them from really dealing with it. Our minds are designed to protect us and therefore make the debt that we have trivial to avoid that perceived emotional pain of confronting the debt that exists. We need to get the emotional debt out of our minds into an external format. I like writing it down.
  • Some wrote it down but only wrote the memory or the feeling which is not effective since it is a partial document and not complete. Our internal system exists of memory and feelings and if we note only one it is as if the debt is only dealt with partially and therefore is resurrected by the element that had not been dealt with.
  • Next this document needs to be destroyed, but some individuals never destroyed it and thereby glorified their pain instead of dealing with it.
  • Some never let go. As a Christian I leave the debt with God. Whatever your conviction you need to let it go otherwise the whole exercise is a waste of time. As ridiculous as it sounds this is a very difficult step for many.
  • Some people think it is a once off process, but most of my clients repeat the process at least 3 to 4 times before they experience complete freedom from the debt. When they have experienced the freedom from the debt once they never want to return to the place where they are jailed by emotional debt.
  • Lastly some think if they still remember it is not done. We are not designed to forget. On the contrary the more we try to forget the more we remember the experience and keep the feeling connection alive. The aim is to sever the emotional connection and not to erase the memory.

 

Allow me to challenge you today to write off your debt and truly be apart from apartheid.

IF YOU ENJOYED THE CONTENT OF THIS ARTICLE CONTACT US TO BOOK A TALK AT YOUR INSTITUTION (WORK or RELIGIOUS INSTITUTION) OR SIGNUP FOR THE NEXT WORKSHOP ON EMOTIONAL DEBT.

 

 

The Satisfaction with Life Scale

After watching this video please download the PDF of the Satisfaction with life Scale by clicking on this link – SWLS

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