We are all wired differently. We don’t always agree. How can you change someone so you are on the same page?
Simply answered? You can’t. But, you can change your reactions to events, people and situations. Especially if you witness a pattern in your life that doesn’t serve you or others. If you hear yourself saying/thinking, “If they would just (fill in the blank).” Or, “If they just wouldn’t (fill in the blank)” more often than not, then you need to look within, not out. But, if in their presence you feel bad, confused or unworthy, you don’t need to invest any time in “changing” them. You need to move on. A healthy, dynamic relationship will bring out the best in you and others, not the worst.
A look in the mirror:
Are you making someone feel perpetually bad, confused or unworthy? It’s time for serious reflection on what you are and aren’t bringing to the table. Look at your underlying heart-attitude and behaviors.
As always, your family-friendly comment is welcome!
Are you in a relationship, work or personal, where you feel frustrated, stuck, mixed-up, or in the middle of drama most of the time? If so, barring extenuating circumstances, you are in a relationship with a toxic person. Toxic people suck the very life out of you. At the very least, you’re bone weary exhausted after almost every encounter with them. Even if you’re not Christian, the Bible has very pithy scriptures. For example, Psalm 31:10 tells what it’s like living with a toxic person, “My life is consumed by anguish and my years by groaning; my strength fails because of (fill in the person’s name), and my bones grow weak.” Spot on, isn’t it? Do you need more support to determine if the relationship is toxic? How do you feel prior to meeting with them? Do you feel dread or angst? How much do you ruminate about it or talk about it what they said and/or their reactions with someone else? Psst…that’s a victim mentality and a complete waste of your time. Affirmative answers to those questions mean you have a toxic relationship and you need to protect your heart and soul. Life is just too short to be with people who don’t love you back in healthy ways that support you to be your best.
Now what? There are 4 things you need to do if you find yourself in a toxic relationship and want out (you have to want the “out” more than staying “in”) or at the very least limit exposure to them:
- Recognizing the relationship as toxic and labeling it accurately. Once you’ve accurately labeled it you can move on. It’s the ruminating questions you incessantly ask yourself that keep you paralyzed. For example, “Did she really say that?” “Can you believe he feels that way about xyz.” “Maybe if I just said xyz he would have understood …” and hundreds of other time-wasting, emotion-twisting questions.
- Keep your feelings in check and always communicate with them rationally. In fact, being rational is a trigger for toxic people. They will try harder to push your buttons. That’s when you know you have to walk away. You can’t be rational with an irrational person.
- Look for and offer common ground. In its’ absence, move on.
- Extricate yourself from that relationship. Just block the person from your phone. Turn your chair around in the office. Don’t accept invitations from them and/or where they will be present. Never engage in anything personal with a toxic person. Eventually, they will tire of you and seek another body to suck the life out of.
Hug and a Shove,
Do you have comments, tips, or ideas for extricating, unwinding from toxic relationships? Please leave your kind and helpful comments, below.
Abuse is often over-used or used incorrectly. And yet, when it is needed to be said, the word isn’t uttered due to shame. It’s time to set the record straight. The word “abuse” is defined by Merriam-Webster as
a corrupt practice or custom
improper or excessive use or treatment
a deceitful act , deception
language that condemns or vilifies usually unjustly, intemperately, and angrily
Abuse comes in many forms. Following are 5 major types:
Physical (when physical touch hurts. Period. Yes, hair pulling, pushing and grabbing is abuse. It’s that simple. Throws a punch to the wall next to you also counts. That is intimidating and not safe.)
Emotional (bullying, threatening and intimidating behaviors; you don’t feel safe; you feel crushed, minimized, by the person that’s supposed to love you, limits your/denies you time spent with friends/family. Unpredictable responses. Embarrasses you in public. Framing things as you being over sensitive. Blaming you for their bad behavior.)
Financial (withholds information about and/or access to money; stealing/embezzling from accounts for their expenses and not telling you about it)
Verbal (when words said by others hurt and/or leaves you feeling confused. Yelling/screaming/calling you names.)
Sexual (forces you to do something you don’t want to do)
Regardless of the type, they are all difficult to experience. The first step is to define it for what it is. For example, you must first accept you are being verbally abused when someone swears at you and calls you names. You have to say to yourself, “I am being verbally abused” and accept your reality, before you can confront the perpetrator. But, what if you aren’t sure? What if you were asleep in the back of the car and he started throwing popcorn at you and laughing. Is that emotional abuse (embarrassing you in public)? No. Juvenile? Yes.
I will add to be framed “abuse” it needs to be a trend or chronic situation, in all abuse categories, with the exception of the physical. One-and-done is all it takes and the police are called. Please have some common sense about this. Don’t count opening the kitchen cabinet door in your face, accidentally, four years ago as abuse. Especially if nothing remotely similar has happened. That was an accident; and a funny memory you two can share.
Still wondering if is abuse or not? The best way is to get educated about the topic. If the dictionary definition didn’t help, here are some excellent resources to get you started (emphasis on emotional and verbal abuse because it isn’t as obvious or defining as physical abuse):
- The Emotionally Destructive Marriage (Christian perspective on the verbally/emotionally abusive marriage) Book and website. She exposes the subtleties and subliminal attitudes and behaviors of the abuser that so often confuse and conflict the victim.
- Love is Respect.org website dedicated to helping young people prevent and end abuse, but everyone can benefit. Fabulous breakdown of the different types of abuse. Helpful quizzes and resources. On-line, 24-hour chat. You have to take a quiz to activate it.
- 7 Signs of an Emotionally Abusive Relationship YouTube video created by Adam LaDolce, of SexyConfidence. Excellent and entertaining.
Finally, I leave you with what may be the two most important questions to ask yourself to determine if what you’re experiencing is abuse:
- Does the person behave appropriately to the circumstances?
- How do you feel after an encounter with them?
Please remember to leave your kind words or comments below.
Blessings and Joy,
- It isn’t about complaining or whining. Because complainers want 1 of 2 things: to have someone to fix “it” (because it is easier to complain than find a solution) or they want validation for their feelings or beliefs. Neither promotes growth and learning. If your husband is a chronic complainer, don’t complain about him. If you complain about your husband, stop. When we’re hurting and confused about anything or anyone, the knee-jerk reaction is to complain because it gives the perception we’re doing something. But, in reality, it keeps us from taking action. Let’s not forget, that complaining is a drain and boring. Who wants to be that?
- It isn’t about husband bashing. No matter how difficult your situation is or you perceive it to be, do NOT lower your responses to his level. You may not recognize it, but he is still a human being and has value. Rise above it and when you do, do it well and with all the respect you can muster.
Please consider this your safe, happy place where you can get answers to questions you didn’t even know you had. Have faith knowing TBDUP is the place to find clarity, direction, support, and encouragement.
I’ve been there. Breathe. We’ll get there, together.
Valentine’s Day was yesterday. Remember the first few months of being in love? All you could do is think of HIM. Talk about HIM. Dream about HIM. Give HIM your best. Be your best for HIM. Think about out-of-the-box creative plans for HIM. Spend a lot of time with HIM even to the point of forgetting you had a life outside of HIM. And boy, did HE respond. It was thrilling, exhilarating, even seductive. You’re smiling, aren’t you?
Now, let’s replace HIM with YB, aka Your Business. All you could do is think of YB. Talk about YB. Dream about YB. Give YB your best. Be your best for YB. Think about out-of-the-box creative plans for YB. Spend a lot of time with YB even to the point of forgetting you had a life outside of YB. And boy, did YB respond. It was thrilling, exhilarating, even seductive. Are you smiling? Or squirming? Listen to that.
If you’re like me, you love to go to work, you love to work in your work and you love to work on your work. It’s the place where the amount of effort you put in is often rewarded by a factor of X. For me, work is my happy place. I invest in my employees, my customers, my systems, and my product/services. And by invest, I don’t mean just money. I mean I invest all my resources, including my most valuable of resources, my time and energy. But the real seduction? I can create the environment and a culture. Talk about an ego boost! I’ve been described as a workaholic. The term has even been hurled at me, repeatedly. It’s something I wear as a badge. A big badge. And I’m proud of it.
But, that’s the problem. When pride enters the picture, love leaves. The devotion I have to my business may be a source of provision, a creative outlet, and in my case, a safe and happy place (read: an escape from the hurt at home). But, denying those that love me, and sacrificing my most important relationships can have devastating consequences. Give to your business. But, save the best for those that love you and those you love.
How many times have you said (or thought) after an altercation, of any degree, with anyone, “This would be so much easier if we/he/she could just communicate!” Communication is when two or more people are trying to get their point across.
What’s missing is the lack of trying to understand the other’s point of view, perspective, or opinion. Most people do not listen with the intent to understand, but instead, they listen with the intent to reply.
A genuine effort to try to understand is accomplished by asking relevant, thoughtful questions. For example, asking leading questions, such as, “Why do you think that?” or “What aspect are you referring to?” or “How certain are you of this?” or “Why did you say that?” will go a long way in forging
communication a connection.
It’s only with connection that you can touch the heart. Think about how you feel when someone asks you thoughtful questions. You feel cherished, valued, important. Do the same for those you love or are close to. Heck, try with the grocery clerk. You’ll be amazed at the heart print you’ll leave behind.
CHALLENGE: I dare you to try understanding everyone around you for 3 straight days. Don’t listen with the intent to reply, but listen to ask more questions. “Seek first to understand, then to be understood.” Let me know what happened, below, in the comments section.