Sometimes just deciding to stop something which does not work, can make a huge change in quality of life and more happiness!
These four things - withdrawing, blaming, justifying and judging - are self defense mechanisms born in poor self-esteem. Good internal self esteem takes time and awareness to build (for those of us who have not been provided with self-esteem building tools during childhood).
And a lack of a positive internal sense of self is behind most of life's struggles, so it is really important to work on repairing that. But as I said, it takes time...
First step is to become aware of how often we actually still use these coping skills. Oh bummer, moment!
Withdrawing, whether it is punishing someone else with silence, manipulating someone into acquiescence or simply because we ran out of tools, withdrawing is the single biggest way in which we can punish ourselves!
New tool: Find your adult voice. The one that can calmly and unemotionally state what you need, what you cannot live with and what you can do about it. This is empowering behaviour, as opposed to withdrawing, which is JUST. BAD. FOR. EVERYONE. INVOLVED.
Blaming is simply ineffective, as it leaves you with another party who is now on the defensive. and when someone is defensive they cannot hear you. Blaming also put you into helpless mode, exactly the opposite of what you would like to achieve by blaming in the first place, right? You want something to change when you blame, yes?
Ain't gonna work, sweetheart!
New tool: Take responsibility for your part (yes, you always have a part in whatever is going on, even if you just choose to allow it!),
Then accept the lesson learned with gratitude and
And, decide what you are going to do about it.
Justifying solves nothing. It tangles you up in the he said/she said wars. It is messy and unproductive, and leaves everyone feeling yucky and frustrated. If you find yourself justifying, it is because you feel blamed or attacked.
New tool: So let them blame you and attack you. So what? Just once CHOOSE not to react.
Rather respond. Say "You think so?" or "Really, you feel that way?"
Note that you are not agreeing, you are just hearing the other person.
And that is the aha moment. They feel heard and you can examine if there is truth in their statement and then CHOOSE your appropriate response.
Judging tells you nothing about the other person and everything about yourself. So use it to help yourself!
New tool: Find out what the other person triggers in you.
Do you feel helpless, or judged yourself, or abandoned, or not good enough, or left out. Work on that, and the need to judge others will disappear over time. Yes, it is hard work, I know. But it is worth the effort, as your internal triggers will be neutralized and you will move towards serenity. Big prize waiting there...
OK, so I know these things work because I had to do everything of the above myself. Baby steps, darling!
I can also back this up!
Just take a look at these testimonials from the brave ones who have already tried these tips and changed their lives around... click here to see them
I would love to hear from you, tell me what is hard, tell me your successes!
So this is where I tell you more about my journey...
Maybe there is something in my story you can use to make your own life better. I really do hope that my random ramblings are of use to someone out there!