Posts Tagged ‘self esteem’

Ending a Destructive Relationship

Monday, May 6th, 2013

Ten years ago I accepted an invitation to dinner with a man I was dating at the time. It was a warm Spring evening and he came to pick me up on his motorcycle. Once he got to my house, it didn’t take me long to realize he’d been drinking as I could smell it on his breath. Never-the-less,  I decided to get on the back of the bike and also chose to leave without two items I almost always take with me–my purse and phone.

Once we got to the restaurant and sat down he ordered drinks. I got a familiar sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach but chose to ignore it opting instead to go with the flow which was standard for me in this particular relationship.  After downing several beers he became obnoxiously loud and  rude with the waitperson who was serving us so was escorted out the door. I got up and walked out behind them. There were many thoughts spinning around in my head not the least of which was frustration with the fact that I was dealing with this situation at all.

Once outside the restaurant he went to get his bike and although I was used to going with the flow, I knew there was no way I would this time.

He pulled up to where I stood expecting me to hop on but I told him no. Agitated, he  said “get on the bike now!” And again I affirmed I wasn’t going to.  After a few more go-rounds of his insistence and my refusal he left. And there I stood no purse, no money, no phone and no ride home. I’m not sure why, but I elected not to go back in the restaurant to make a phone call maybe because I was too embarrassed or maybe because I just wanted to be alone. Whatever the reason, I started walking home–all twelve miles. (more…)

A New Relationship on the Heels of an Old One

Wednesday, April 17th, 2013

Sometimes people leave one relationship and before you know it, have entered a new one. Being barely out of one relationship and then sliding into a new one is a slippery slope to climb. It’s hard to be emotionally available for a new partner when there hasn’t been enough time to move past the old one.

Where is the breathing room? What happens to the time it takes to think and heal?

It may be uncomfortable to be without a partner but feeling your way along–alone for awhile is not a bad thing. It takes time patience and a willingness to face loss in order to heal. There isn’t a need to bring another person into the picture to help you through the process. A new relationship partner just adds another layer you’re not ready for. Any new person you meet may wonder why you even find it necessary to start something new so soon.

Healing happens over time. Rushing into new relationships postpones healing.

It doesn’t matter if the relationship left was the world’s worst—healing is still necessary.

It doesn’t matter if the relationship was loveless—there still needs to be time to understand why you were there.

Consider the time you spend without a relationship as an investment in you. Healing makes us stronger and wiser. We grow, develop, and learn from each person that comes into our lives. Friends and family can be of great help after a breakup. They can provide companionship and help you stabilize as you move forward on your own.

Whether the relationship you left lasted a month, six months, a year or ten, the time and effort you put into your healing will provide you with peace and well being down the road.

Take More Time to Pay Attention in Conversations with Others

Friday, February 8th, 2013

If we take more time to pay attention to our thoughts when in conversations with others we’re less likely to have conversations with abusers and in turn develop relationships with them. If a small voice inside you warns you, listen to the warning.

Celebrate Small Steps

Thursday, February 7th, 2013

Celebrate and focus on the small steps you take each day as you move forward. Minimize the setbacks.

Support

Wednesday, February 6th, 2013

Spend less time with critical people and more time with those who love and support you.

Starting Point

Tuesday, February 5th, 2013

Arriving at one point is the starting point of another. –John Dewey

Resolutions to Reflect on the Good You Already Do

Tuesday, January 1st, 2013

It’s a new year and with it are the resolutions to try harder  or do something more or better than we did last year.

What if we don’t stop striving for improvement but in addition give ourselves a break by reflecting on what we already do well.

Just think of the relief in knowing that you’re already doing a good job. Sure there’s always room for improvement but there is already plenty of emphasis put on doing more better faster.

Why not have resolutions more in line with breathe easier live calmer and you’re already doing a heck of a job?

Give yourself a break. Take time for you.

The time we take for ourselves and our families are the gifts we get in life. These moments are the best that life has to offer.

Happy New Year!

 

 

Getting Burned & Life Lessons

Tuesday, December 4th, 2012

One time when my oldest son was two I was standing at the kitchen stove just starting dinner.  I turned the front burner on. My son came up to the stove and I told him “Hot don’t touch, it will hurt. No!”

He looked at me and said “Hot!”

I said “That’s right, hot!”

He looked at the burner then looked at me, looked at the burner, then looked at me again.  With no warning what-so-ever he firmly placed his hand right on it! In the same instant came his blood curdling scream and me picking him up. I dashed out of the kitchen him in my arms to take care of the burn repeating, “Hot, hot, I told you hot!”

Well, I may have told him hot but he didn’t understand hot until he felt hot on his hand! He definitely learned about hot after that incident. Fortunately the stove burner wasn’t on high or even medium heat but it was hot enough to burn his hand and as a result he never touched a stove burner again.

Lesson learned. Stove burners are hot. Place your hand on one and you’ll get burned.

For me, there have been situations in my life where it took more than one experience to learn a lesson. There have been times when despite red flags, warnings, and incidents where it was clear I needed to pay attention, I repeatedly didn’t learn.  Instead I wished and hoped and prayed things would work out.  I often ignored my gut instincts opting to second guess myself instead. So it went like this:

Lesson not learned. Repeat lesson.

Lesson not learned. Repeat lesson again…

I would rather confidently say, I know what is best for me

than after the fact say…

I was afraid that would happen!

Or

I’m not comfortable with that

rather than…

Oh, I guess it will be okay.

When we think about what we want, we really do know.

And if we really are unsure in a given situation then what we’re really saying is no.

How many times does it take to learn one life lesson?

As many times as we allow it to take.

There are some lessons we don’t want to repeat more than once because these lessons take a toll on us.

So the next time you come into contact with a hot burner and you’ve already felt the pain pay attention to the voice that tells you to turn your back and walk away.

 

Leaving a Bad Relationship

Thursday, October 11th, 2012

Nearly eight years ago I walked away from a bad relationship. I had been warming up to the idea of leaving for about a year. I kept thinking of reasons to stay. I’d see a ray of hope and latch on clinging to it for days until the ray dimmed and the down cycle began again. I waited through each bad cycle hoping again for another glimmer to emerge. These cycles were my lot inside this particular relationship and it took me a long time to realize that all my hoping was doing nothing more than keeping me stuck. I had to get through enough of the up and down cycles until I “got it.” Eventually I understood that the relationship was nothing more than a series of very short good cycles and much longer bad ones.

It’s hard to give up hope when you care for someone. It is painful to face the reality of what is clearly a losing proposition. We all need hope in our lives; it keeps us going and encourages us to move forward yet we’ve all got to face that staying in a bad relationship is a waste of precious time. The relationship I had was never going to bring me anything different than what I’d already experienced–why in the world would I want that?

I knew it would be better for me to stop the cycles cut my losses and walk away. Yet what prevented me from leaving was my dread of facing the end. I didn’t look forward to the misery I was sure would follow; I didn’t want to experience the emptiness I was certain would be mine to come. Looking back, it’s like I stepped on a bee got stung wished later I’d been wearing shoes but continued to walk around barefoot.

So even though my immediate thought was to keep things status quo in order to avoid pain I knew that long term suffering would have been the outcome of staying.

With the breakup came wisdom, courage, and hope. This hope wasn’t misplaced; it was hard-won. I learned that any relationship is not better than no relationship. I also learned that healthy relationships require paying attention in all aspects of life. It’s not hard to make good relationship choices but it does take knowing what you will and won’t accept and sticking with it.

Reprogram Your Self Talk

Saturday, September 29th, 2012

It is very easy to allow yourself to believe that life will not get better and that you do not have what it takes to move forward successfully in relationships, career, or in any other way.

Being in destructive relationships includes the one you’re in with yourself. When you have been put down, badgered, belittled, ignored, or physically, emotionally, mentally, or sexually abused, it is easy to believe that you cannot do anything right or are not as good as others.

It is easy to think this way because at some point in your life or maybe throughout life you have listened to others who have told you that you are some how defective or are missing something and because of this will always  fail.

If whatever you believe, whatever recording you play over and over in your mind is negative, that noise can be deafening.  Silence the noise by playing a new recording–one that is positive uplifting and accurate. Memorize this recording and play it loud. Write it out and stick it to a wall where you will see it every day.

Start playing the new recording today. Play it over and over until you believe it. When the old negative recording starts to creep back into your thoughts focus on drowning it out with the new vibrant positive one.

Instead of being your own worst enemy concentrate on being your best friend.