Thoughts To Live By…

Archive for the ‘Relationship’ Category

Sunday, March 8th, 2009

Throughout life, there are times when we may come across an individual or a situation where a person is very dominant, controlling and possibly even manipulative. Sometimes it is a boss who doesn’t allow us to voice our opinions. Sometimes it is a family member who is very demanding and finds ways to get us to manipulate us into doing what they want. And sometimes, it may be a friend who is very pushy and demands that others do things their way, on their time schedule, forgetting that those around them are affected in the process.

This can frustrate us, making us feel stifled, and worst of all, powerless. And although it may come to a head only once in awhile, if we are in a relationship or friendship where this happens on a frequent basis, it can take a toll, and we can lose our sense of worth and even worse, sense of self. It can be debilitating. The only way we can avoid these feelings is to take the power back, and empower ourselves.

Let’s take an illustrative example of a friend who is perpetually late. You find it irritating and inconsiderate. Moreover, you resent the fact that her perpetual lateness causes you to be late as well. With this example in mind, here are six steps to empower yourself out of her control:

  1. Take Charge of Your Life: The only person who can really control your life is you. Start acknowledging how you feel about these situations. Start making decisions for yourself and prioritizing what is important to you. Example: Admit that your friend’s lateness bothers you. Think about the ideal situation and how you would like it to play out. Picture it in your mind.
  2. Set Goals: Setting goals allows us to stay true to what is important to us. Goals can be big or small. Whatever the case, create goals that are important to you and don’t let anyone else hurt your chances of reaching them. Example: If there is an event or function that you want to be on time for, set a goal that you will be on time no matter what.
  3. State Your Opinion/Thought/Preference: Once you have a goal in mind, state it out loud. State it to yourself and to the other person so they know where you stand. Be clear in voicing your expectation, and don’t leave anything up to the imagination by assuming the person understands what you want. Example: State to the individual who is always late that it is very important to you that you are on time for the event. Let them know you are willing to go without them if they aren’t ready in time.
  4. Stand Your Ground: Wishywashiness isn’t going to help you in these situations. Don’t back down from what you believe, feel or want. Stand your ground and follow through with your plan to ensure your goal is met. Example: If the other person is late, leave without them. If you don’t, they will continue to assume that it is okay to push their schedule on you.
  5. Stop Relying on Others for Approval: Part of what allows us to be ruled by others is that we want their approval. The reality is, if you respect yourself and stand up for what you want, then others will start respecting you more for it.  Example: If after you leave and the other person gets upset. Make it clear that you informed them you would leave without them. Don’t apologize. You did what was important to you and you stayed true to yourself.
  6. Let go: There will be times when these steps aren’t always possible. You might just find that a relationship is repetitively one-sided in consideration. Instead of getting upset, let go. Realize that the person isn’t going to change and that you have the power to not let it bother you. Find ways to ensure that you take care of yourself. Example: If the person continues to be late for everything, stay true to your priority and start going alone and stop caring. Let go of the feelings and just accept them for who they are and start empowering yourself to be the on-time person you want to be.

Empowering yourself is important. Waiting for others to empower you gets you nowhere. Have you had a relationship where you felt you had no power? What did you do to address the situation?

http://www.sheerbalance.com/brettsblog/2009/03/08/6-steps-to-stop-being-manipulated/

Although we like to think that the people in our lives are well-adjusted, happy, healthy minded individuals, we sometimes realize that it just isn’t so.  Personally, I’ve had moments where I’ll be skipping through my day, happy as can be, thinking life is grand and BAM, I’ll be blindsided by someone who manages to knock the happy wind out of my sails.  Sometimes it is easy to write it off and other times, not so much.

Maybe you are a positive person, but when you are around a certain individual, you feel negative.  Or, maybe you have an idealistic view of the world and when you are with certain people, you are made to feel silly, unrealistic or delusional.  Or, maybe you pride yourself in being completely independent and in control of your life, but when you are around a certain family member, you regress into a state of childhood.

Some of these situations, and yes, these people, can have a tremendously negative impact on our lives.  And, although we are all human and have our ‘issues,’ some ‘issues’ are quite frankly, toxic.  They are toxic to our happiness.  They are toxic to our mental outlook.  They are toxic to our self-esteem.  And they are toxic to our lives.  They can suck the life out of us and even shorten our lifespan.

Here are the worst of the toxic personalities out there and how to spot them:

1. Manipulative Mary: These individuals are experts at manipulation tactics.  Is a matter of fact, you may not even realize you have been manipulated until it is too late.  These individuals figure out what your ‘buttons’ are, and push them to get what they want.

  • Why they are toxic: These people have a way of eating away at your belief system and self-esteem.  They find ways to make you do things that you don’t necessarily want to do and before you know it, you lose your sense of identity, your personal priorities and your ability to see the reality of the situation.  The world all of a sudden becomes centered around their needs and their priorities.

2. Narcissistic Nancy: These people have an extreme sense of self-importance and believe that the world revolves around them.  They are often not as sly as the Manipulative Marys of the world, but instead, tend to be a bit overt about getting their needs met.  You often want to say to them “It isn’t always about you.”

  • Why they are toxic: They are solely focused on their needs, leaving your needs in the dust.  You are left disappointed and unfulfilled.  Further, they zap your energy by getting you to focus so much on them, that you have nothing left for yourself.

3. Debbie Downers: These people can’t appreciate the positive in life.  If you tell them that it is a beautiful day, they will tell you about the impending dreary forecast.  If you tell them you aced a mid-term, they’ll tell you about how difficult the final is going to be.

  • Why they are toxic: They take the joy out of everything.  Your rosy outlook on life continues to get squashed with negativity.  Before you know it, their negativity consumes you and you start looking at things with gray colored glasses yourself.

4. Judgmental Jims: When you see things as cute and quirky, they see things as strange and unattractive.  If you find people’s unique perspectives refreshing, they find them ‘wrong’.  If you like someone’s eclectic taste, they find it ‘disturbing’ or ‘bad’.

  • Why they are toxic: Judgmental people are much like Debbie Downers.  In a world where freedom rings, judgment is sooo over.  If the world was a homogeneous place, life would be pretty boring.  Spending a lot of time with these types can inadvertently convert you into a judgmental person as well.

5. Dream Killing Keiths: Every time you have an idea, these people tell you why you can’t do it.  As you achieve, they try to pull you down.  As you dream, they are the first to tell you it is impossible.

  • Why they are toxic: These people are stuck in what is instead of what could be.  Further, these individuals eat away at your self-esteem and your belief in yourself.  Progress and change can only occur from doing new things and innovating, dreaming the impossible and reaching for the stars.

6. Insincere Illissas: You never quite feel that these people are being sincere.  You tell a funny story, they give you a polite laugh.  You feel depressed and sad and they give you a ‘there, there’ type response.  You tell them you are excited about something and you get a very ho-hum response.

  • Why they are toxic: People who aren’t sincere or genuine build relationships on superficial criteria.  This breeds shallow, meaningless relationships.  When you are really in need of a friend, they won’t be there.  When you really need constructive criticism, they would rather tell you that you are great the way you are.  When you need support, they would rather see you fail or make a fool of yourself.

7. Disrespectful Dannys: These people will say or do things at the most inappropriate times and in the most inappropriate ways.  In essence, they are more subtle, grown up bullies.  Maybe this person is a friend who you confided in and uses your secret against you.  Maybe it is a family member who puts their busy-body nose into your affairs when it is none of their business.  Or maybe, it is a colleague who says demeaning things to you.

  • Why they are toxic: These people have no sense of boundaries and don’t respect your feelings or, for that matter, your privacy.  These people will cause you to feel frustrated and disrespected.

8. Never Enough Nellies: You can never give enough to these people to make them happy.  They take you for granted and have unrealistic expectations of you.  They find ways to continually fault you and never take responsibility for anything themselves.

  • Why they are toxic: You will spend so much time trying to please them, that you will end up losing yourself in the process.  They will require all of your time and energy, leaving you worn out and your own needs sacrificed.

All of these personalities have several things in common.  1) the more these people get away with their behavior, the more they will continue.  2) Unfortunately, most of these people don’t see that what they do is wrong and as a result, talking to them about it will fall on deaf ears, leaving you wondering if you are the crazy one.  3) Most of these people get worse with age, making their impact on you stronger with time.

Frankly, life is too short to spend your time dealing with toxicity.  If you can, avoid spending mucho time with people who are indicative of these behaviors and you’ll feel a lot happier. Have you encountered these personalities?  What have you done?  Any personalities you would add?

http://shine.yahoo.com/channel/life/8-toxic-personalities-to-avoid-461078/

It’s not a complicated process to keep a man happy. Here, you’ll learn simple (and free) gestures to show that you care.

By dating blogger Ryan Dodge for Glamour Updated: May 7, 2009

As someone who can barely calculate a tip, I don’t have much to add to the conversation about our tanking economy. But I would like to share one little piece of wisdom I picked up from my favorite social economists: you can’t buy me love. Corny but true. Don’t believe me? Try one of my five patented Romance Enhancers — if you don’t think they’re more effective than a gift card, I’ll send you a full refund.

#1: Touch His Arm

There are a lot of ways to subtly let a guy know you’re into him, like maintaining eye contact, playing with your hair, and smiling a lot. But the only one that sends shivers down my spine is when a girl touches my arm during conversation. It always surprises me, and it’s always great.

#2: Send Him a Random Text Message in Midday.

OK, this might not be free depending on your cell phone plan, but it’s still a great value. Nothing breaks the monotony of a long workday like a flirty note from someone special, and unless his job is super-intense he’ll have plenty of time to daydream about you.

#3: Ask Him a Question About Something He Knows a Lot About

Dating news flash: Guys like to show off for you. So if your dude could use an ego boost, there’s nothing like letting him feel like an expert. Ask him about fishing, the 1983 Chicago White Sox, or the mating habits of the Guyanese Bullfinches — whatever he’s into. Just remember to nod frequently and look really interested.

#4: Give Him a Very Specific Compliment

Telling a guy he’s funny, handsome, or smart is always appreciated, but the reallymeaningful compliments are the ones that reveal how well you know him.compliments are the ones that reveal how well you know him. Something like “I love the way your face scrunches up when you’re doing the crossword puzzle” or “You have the most manly calves I’ve ever seen.”

#5: Send Him the Diary Entry You Wrote After Your First Date — or Write One Now


One of the best things about having a girlfriend is reminiscing about what you thought about each other in the beginning of your relationship. Reliving all of the uncertainty and anxiety is strangely exhilarating. I can’t think of a better anniversary present than a sanctioned peek into the documented thoughts of someone I care about.

http://dating.personals.yahoo.com/singles/relationships/24293/dating-tips-5-easy-ways-to-make-men-smile

When is it time to say, “My relationship is in trouble, and we need help?” How do you know when that time is?

By Sharon Rivkin, M.A., M.F.T, for www.hitchedmag.com Updated: Dec 9, 2008

When couples wait too long to ask for help, the relationship may be beyond repair. The sooner help is sought, the better chance there is of recovering, saving and actually strengthening the relationship. This includes issues dealing with affairs or other types of betrayal.

‘The longer we wait, the more entrenched we get in destructive patterns and resentment and all hope for change is lost.”

The longer we wait, the more entrenched we get in destructive patterns and resentment and all hope for change is lost. At a certain point we don’t even want change… we just want to be done.

The seven warning signs that a relationship is in trouble are:

1. Fighting has become the rule rather than the exception to the rule.

2. You find yourself looking outside the relationship for comfort, care, and understanding.

3. You can’t remember what attracted you to your partner in the first place.

4. There is little or no intimacy in your relationship — sleeping in different rooms or different beds, lack of interest, anger, and hostility so that intimacy is out of the question.

5. Spending very little time together, friends seem to be more important than your partner.

6. Reactions to situations are disproportionate to the content of the disagreement (i.e., feeling your partner doesn’t love you because she/he didn’t like the meal you cooked).

7. Feeling helpless and hopeless to change anything. Feeling done with the relationship, but unclear as to where to go and what to do. Feelings of anger, resentment, pain, and desperation are predominant.

If any or all of these describe you in your relationship, your relationship is in trouble and it won’t be long before something more drastic happens, such as an affair, arguments get worse and inflate with intensity, increased jealousy, silence for longer periods of time, and sometimes even physical and/or verbal abuse.

Before your relationship reaches that critical crisis point, look at the warning signs and do something before it’s too late:
  1. Seek psychotherapy
  2. Read books
  3. Talk to a spiritual/religious advisor
Without help, the relationship will never get better with time; once a certain level of resentment, anger, and hostility hits, it will simply get worse and worse. Avoiding a total crisis and saving the relationship is done by knowing when you’re in trouble and taking immediate action.

http://dating.personals.yahoo.com/singles/relationships/24165/dating-101-seven-warning-signs-of-a-troubled-relationship


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