Out on a Limb
A Monthly Newsletter from Martha Clark Scala
Invest in bringing joy back to your life.
May 2012



Welcome to Out on a Limb, a monthly newsletter from Martha Clark Scala. This free e-zine is meant to invite and inspire you to maximize the joy in your life.

Antidotes to Neediness: Cultivating Your Inner Mom

If you are a long-time reader of Out on a Limb, regard this month’s offering as a sequel to the October 2010 issue, Have Yourself a Mom-Fest. That newsletter focused on our actual mothers or those who provide some aspect of maternal presence in our outer world. Here, we turn inward. What does an Inner Mom do?

  • She supports you even when external support is absent. (She has your back.)
  • She wants to nurture you, and help you grow.
  • She tends to you when you are hurt or sick, be it physically or emotionally.
  • She wants to hear the exciting news you have to share.
  • She has recipes for so much more than a good batch of oatmeal cookies or fool-proof gravy.
  • She defends you even when you have done something indefensible.
  • She reassures you when you feel wobbly.
  • She holds you when you need to fall apart.

Feel free to send me your additions to this list! As I drafted it, I sought one phrase that could sum it all up, and that is how “Antidote to Neediness” emerged. I could digress here and argue that neediness is not necessarily a bad thing. Since most people I know hate to even admit that they are feeling needy, and are mortified if it shows, antidotes are highly prized. Someone once said to me that when she is feeling needy or desperate, she feels like she has a stink radiating from her, and that others can smell it, and then they are repelled. If this is true, it is easy to see how neediness begets more neediness, becoming a hard cycle to break. What if your best defense against this stink is an intimate relationship with your Inner Mom? If you access her gifts, you don’t need as much from external sources, and your stink factor gets reduced. Oh, if it were only that easy.


Protest #1

There are so many ways to resist a connection with your Inner Mom. One of the most prevalent is to regard this whole idea as hokey. More often than not, this is the judge or critic voice that resides in each of us. Try wondering if the loudness of this protest correlates to the extent to which the Inner Mom relationship needs to be strengthened? Who knows? You probably do! If the protest is particularly loud, there may be an out-and-out duel going on with the Judge saying, “You are such a wimp. How weak to need something like this.” Perhaps your best defense against this is to smile, listen, and be kind to yourself, anyway. That is what an Inner Mom would do, isn’t it?


Protest #2

Protest #2 boils down to this: “I want my Mommy.” If we refuse to tap into inner resources that can care for us and assuage neediness, we might be insisting that others provide mothering when they may or not be able to do so. Beware the stink! The nifty thing about an Inner Mom is that she will always be there for you. For the guys who are reading this, I sure hope you don’t feel you are exempt from this practice. Yes, this is a feminine energy but I would argue that males need internal mothering just as much as females. And stay tuned to future newsletters, because females need to tap into a masculine energy, too! You might as well maximize the potential for joy!


Joy-Gram for May 2012

In this month that involves a celebration of mothers, observe the qualities in moms in your world that you would like to cultivate within yourself. This is particularly important for those who were raised by moms who fell short of expectations, and for whom the idea of accessing an Inner Mom evokes Protest #3, which is “But I don’t know HOW.”

Your May 2012 Prompts for Joy

Click here to see what technology can do with 185 voices from 12 countries.

Click here for the joy of Paris. (Requires some mouse-work to fully enjoy.)

Nancy Clark and Bill Faure provided the links to this month’s Prompts for Joy. Merci beacoups!

Grief FAQ

How do I take care of myself when I’m grieving? My response to this Frequently Asked Question about the grieving process is at www.caring.com which is an incredible resource for those who are caring for an elderly parent or relative. Click the Grief FAQ link at the top of this page for more.

Pictured Above

My Inner Mom takes me out to the ballgame. For my East Coast pals, fear not: I remain a Red Sox fan, too! Smart phone photograph by Bill Scala.

Archives Now Available

To re-read or share past Out On A Limb newsletters, click here, or type the following url into your browser: http://www.mcscala.com/html/EZineArchives.html.

By no means do I have joy “figured out.” Please do not assume that I do! I write Out On a Limb as much as a meditation for myself in the ongoing pursuit of joy, as for you. I think this pursuit is a lifelong journey and that the full experience of joy is, at best, episodic. May we all have more episodes!


Martha Clark Scala, MFT • 721 Colorado Ave., Suite 201, Palo Alto, CA 94303 •

To unsubscribe from this list please send an email to info@MCScala.com