Obligation

An exploration of flower essences you can use
to address issues with obligation.

obligation

  1. an act or course of action to which a person is morally or legally bound
  2. a duty or commitment
  3. a debt of gratitude for a service or favor

How do you approach your obligations? When you give your time and service, does it bring you joy or do you resent doing things to which you feel bound?

There are some things in life that we are morally or legally bound to do. We have a duty to care for our children, for instance. We have a choice as to whether we will fulfill these obligations or not. No obligation can be placed on you without your consent. You may not like the alternatives, but there is always a choice.

Sorting Out Your Choices

Sometimes we may feel as if we are doing battle with life and people in the attempt to fulfill what we think are our obligations.

Many of us have experienced relationships in which we felt that the other person’s needs or expectations were more important than our own. This can be because of cultural traditions, family dynamics we experienced when we were children, or through a need to resolve this issue from a past life. We can find ourselves dreading certain interactions because we feel a need to take care of the other.

When we do things out of obligation, we are not living from our hearts. If others expect us to do things that we are not comfortable doing, we may find that our inner state of being is less than peaceful or loving. Obligation can be a breeding ground for resentment.

Photo of Desert Christmas Cholla Cactus

This state of being may leave us feeling powerless and without choices. Desert Christmas Cholla Cactus can help us sort out what is important in a relationship that includes feelings of obligation, whether it means a change in our actions or a change of heart.

If you feel burdened by an obligation, it is important to assess the foundation of that obligation. Sometimes you think you are obliged to do something and in fact, the other person really doesn’t want it at all. Or, you may be preventing someone else who would love to be taking care of that need from doing so because they thought you loved doing it. You need to revisit the reasons you think you are obligated and perhaps turn the action over to someone else who can provide the service with more love and care. If your actions spring from resentment, the action will be tainted by your feeling.

After careful study, if you are clear that the obligation is something you really need to do yourself, you need to ascertain whether it is possible to change your attitude so that your actions can spring from a heart-felt love and not from resentment.

Desert Christmas Cholla Cactus can help you sort out the challenges of obligation so you can either change your actions or your attitude. In that way, you are able to act from a clear and caring heart.

This flower essence is for sorting out issues specifically of obligation and of feeling controlled by others’ expectations and needs. It is for those who fear that others will make thing difficult for them, are enmeshed with others and have difficulty being clear about what they themselves want.

Unspoken Debts

Another aspect of obligation is when we feel indebted to someone because we accepted a favor or service without any form of payment. It is important to be clear in our interactions with others whether there is any kind of payment due.

It can be a wonderful experience to receive a gift, favor or kind action from another who doesn’t expect anything in return. It can leave you feeling uplifted, joyful, and strengthens your faith in human kindness.

However, when you receive something, it is important to check within yourself to see if receiving a gift or favor will leave you feeling obliged to the giver and if you are comfortable with that obligation. Even if the person giving something does not want anything in return, you may feel that you are obliged anyway. By checking in with yourself, you can tell whether you really want to receive or not.

To some people, this may be a foreign concept because they always keep a secret running tally about who owes whom what. The Helpless Siren Formula is excellent for changing the foundation of giving and receiving support and getting needs met. This composite formula is excellent for those who feel that they have to hint and hope that others will get the message about what they want. They sometimes feel that they must manipulate others into offering what they want or need, rather than asking directly

When everything is out in the open, when expectations are clarified by both sides, there is no need to expend your energy keeping a secret running tally of debt or obligation. You no longer need to hope that what you want is properly interpreted by another.

Hiding Behind Obligations

Some people hide behind obligations. They gladly take on responsibilities, happy to be needed, but in reality they are hiding out from their own needs. Theresa Cactus flower essence can harmonize this dysfunctional tendency. It supports you in finding appropriate balance as you decide how much time to give to others and to your favorite causes.

Photo of Theresa Cactus

Quite often giving is a way we have of always remaining in control of things. If we are always the one who is the provider, then we feel needed. Theresa Cactus can help us ascertain whether we feel this need to always be the giver. It can take a great deal of self-love to allow yourself to receive. Theresa Cactus can activate this love within. Once we love ourselves, we can truly care deeply for others.

Another important aspect of obligation involves the feelings you have in a relationship. Klein’s Pencil Cholla Cactus can be an important support for those who stay in a relationship out of a feeling of obligation. Even if the relationship is dysfunctional or emotionally unsupportive, they feel obligated to keep on, often while ignoring or disavowing their feelings of discontentment.

Photo of Klein's Pencil Cholla Cactus

Relationships change, just as each individual changes with growth and evolution. Klein’s Pencil Cholla Cactus can help someone sort out what he or she really wants in a relationship so that a resolution can be found. Sometimes resolution comes through communicating more clearly what you need. Other times it becomes clear that the relationship can no longer serve both parties. Klein’s Pencil Cholla Cactus can provide excellent inner support to disentangle a sense of obligation, helping you form holding yourself back in life by remaining in an unrewarding situation. It enhances self-empowerment to solve relationship problems rather than giving up and hiding behind a sense of obligation.

Selecting the Most Appropriate Flower Essences

Not every flower essence mentioned above will be appropriate for every person’s specific needs. Different people have different issues around obligation. The process itself of exploring and contemplating your obligation issues is important. It is the foundation for successfully selecting the most beneficial flower essences. Usually, careful self-examination can clearly show you which of the above flower essences are most appropriate for your particular needs.

Though you can use more than one flower essence together, you probably will not need to use all of the ones mentioned here. After contemplating your relationship to this issue, select the flower essences that apply for you, or use an intuitive method to select among them. (For more information on how to do this, see The Art & Technique of Using Flower Essences.) A general guideline is to use four drops at a time, four times a day, in water. However, it is fine to follow your intuition and use them as often as you like. Most people find that they tend to use them more often in the beginning and less often towards the end of the cycle. Unless otherwise indicated, a cycle is usually two to four weeks. [more]

For information on how to clearly evaluate the effects of the essences you have used, see The Art & Technique of Using Flower Essences.

Recommended Flower Essences

Desert Christmas Cholla Cactus
feeling controlled by others’ expectations and needs; feeling obligated to do something without ascertaining whether you really want to do it.
Helpless Siren Formula
hinting or manipulating others to get your needs met, which results in unspoken debts that leave you obligated to do things you don’t want to do.
Klein's Pencil Cholla Cactus
staying in a relationship that is holding you back emotionally; hiding behind your obligation in the relationship.
Theresa Cactus
doing things for others and then not having time to take care of your own interests, health, or self-care; hiding behind giving.