As 2018 draws to a close, I find myself looking back to two years ago when I set myself a personal challenge of reaching my highest potential and I’d like to focus on one of my major struggles in achieving that goal.
I’m very proud of the person I’ve become in these past two years; however I’ve also had one area that I continued to struggle with – until just a few days ago. I know I’ve finally learned my lesson because of the inner peace I now feel when it comes to this particular area of challenge in my personal life. I specified “personal life” because somehow when it came to others, clients , co-workers, random people I meet, who were not a part of my family or relationships circle, I am very capable of handling troublesome situations without “flying off the handle” for want of a better word. However, in family and intimate relationships, I had problems controlling my tongue and my responses – which as you know from my book – all stem from how we choose to interpret the challenges we face daily.
This is what I’ve discovered and learned recently. It’s not quite correct to use the word “discovered” because I knew all this in my head (see my book – I wrote about this stuff) however I had difficulty translating it into my personal life.
Here’s how I finally did it.
- First I came to the realization that something needed to change, because every time someone did something that caused me some emotional discomfort I internalize it and this caused me great emotional pain. So finally I decided that I was no longer going to give anyone that type of power over me, because I realized that allowing someone’s behavior to cause me to feel sad, upset, angry, disappointed, or whatever; was allowing that person to determine my happiness, and that was not cool with me. I do not consider myself to be helpless, yet this was what I was allowing someone else to make me feel.
- I decided that my lack of self-control in these areas (personal conflicts) was the real culprit and I decided to work on that. This work began with becoming aware of my thought process when these situations arose.
- I ask myself: “Can I change how someone else behaves?” The answer is “No.” Who or what can I change? The answer is “I can only change how I choose to respond by changing how I think about the situation.”
- By asking these questions, I de-escalate my thought processes from “automatic response” to a more “educated” response, by realizing that I can only change me and the only decision I have in changing a situation about someone else, is whether they deserve to be in my space if the only purpose they serve is to make my life unhappy.
- The last thing I do is to let go of the situation and allow it to work itself out on it’s own. In the end, I am the only person who can decide if this relationship is worth my time, or if it’s time to let it go.
- This is the only way you can take back your power. First you rein in your automatic responses by paying attention to your thoughts, and deciding the best unemotional response. Hopefully this article has allowed someone to take back their power from others who hold them hostage to emotional roller-coaster rides.
I wish for you to always remain in the driver’s seat of your own lives, by FEELING the FEAR and DOING it (whatever that is) ANYWAY. Much Love!