You may want to get your journal out and take some notes as Indrani asks some important questions in this episode. Are you thinking about making a change in your life? What feelings come up for you during the change process? What does change mean to you?
00:00 Introduction 01:49 What do you feel when undergoing change? What is change necessary? 03:35 When change needs to be birthed 05:26 Using your energy to fight back against change 07:59 Ask others about the change they see in you 10:25 Understand that change is a constant 13:00 Writing exercise – Change means… 15:20 Outro
Yes, if only all of our fights could be fair and above the belt.
That’s so hard to do though, isn’t it?
We feel attacked and we strike back.
It’s that old fight or flight, right?
I can either run away or I can slam you right back.
Are there other choices?
There are other choices….but only for those who REALLY want to change.
There are other choices….but only for those who understand that they can only change themselves.
There are other choices….but only if you intend to invest the time to build a new muscle.
Have you ever gone to a gym and started a weight training program?
Did you start with the MOST weight on the rack?
If you did, did it work out for you?
I hope that you started out with smaller weights, even 3 lbs…especially for the small muscles like the triceps.
The small muscles fatigue a lot quicker than the larger thigh or butt muscles.
Let’s expand this triceps training metaphor to your resolve to fight fair.
When you start, the resolve is small and you can only hold the fight fair tenets for a short time. Then you fall back into the old habits that you have down pat.
You lob name for name, insult for insult and then you choose your partners weakest spot and WHAM! Then one of you falls first, and the other feels vindicated.
If you were to verbalize what the original fight was about you might not even remember.
Your head would be filled with “well she said my mother is horrible” or “how dare he say that I am a bitch?”
The list is endless.
The real issue is again buried under the rubble from this most recent battle.
So do you give up?
If you do what will happen?
Things will not change.
You will feel the same way next week, next month and next year about the things that irritate you today.
How then do you withstand the emotional onslaught without striking back?
It is as simple as a DECISION to STOP the WAR!
I mean STOP contributing to the war.
I mean stop the lobbying of the insults.
I mean SHUT UP!
I mean to walk out of the room.
I mean to withdraw your emotional investment from the fight at hand.
I also mean to STOP pretending that anyone is actually winning!
The pretense that there is actually a winner in all this personal rancor and nastiness is epic!
Epic Pretense is pretending that nasty will get your loved ones to:
1. Love you the way you want
2. Give you compliments
3. Clean up their mess
4. Do whatever you say they should do.
When is the best time to start these new action items?
Well, it would be great if you (the warring parties) could have a peaceful conversation when there is nothing “hot” going on.
Then together you can decide on some ground rules.
If there is no chance for a peaceful conversation, then YOU have to take the high road and begin to implement the peace treaty by yourself.
How can that look?
You can tell yourself that you will not accept name calling. If it happens you will leave the room.
You can also decide that cursing is not allowed in your home and if it happens you will leave the room.
These changes will not be magically manifested…you will have to work at it (like starting with the 3 lb weights during a tricep exercise). You will tire easily, but keep it up.
Slowly you will see that changes are occurring and then you will have to take a deeper look at what it all means for the rest of life.
There is a lot of work that goes into lifting 3lbs with your triceps to being able to lift 35lbs. It is possible, but only with consistent training and proper care of your whole body.
Likewise, it is possible to stop being at war with each other, but only if it is something you really want. You must want it as surely as you want a plentiful supply of oxygen and clean water.
Oxygen and water are essential to living.
Fighting fair is essential to a LIFE worth living!
In his book The Power of a Positive NO, William Ury gives us these 3 strategies to help us form and deliver a NO that is supportive.
Ury tells us that we “cannot say a proper YES if we cannot say NO.”
When I first read that line, I had to really think about it.
This is what occurred to me…if I am NOT ALLOWED to say NO to you, then any request is really just an order from you.
If I have to obey my orders, why even put it in question form? Just say to me…
At least then I know what I am dealing with, dictators and tyrants.
It is my experience however, that few tyrants WANT to be seen as tyrants. They want to be seen as benevolent and caring. They really believe that all their demands and orders are for our own good. They may think of themselves as the parent and us as children and therefore need to be TOLD what to do and how to do it.
Here is an easy test. Think of someone in your life that you have not said NO to. They “ask” and you do, without any real choice in the matter.
Now flip the roles in your head. Are you allowed to tell them what to do and will they do it?
If, for instance, they say “This room is filthy, clean it up!” and you are expected to hop to it and clean it up, can you say the same, in the same voice? Will they hop to it and clean it up?
Please do not try this with an abuser!!!
William Ury says that we must:
1. Change what is not working… by learning to say NO
2. Protect what we hold dear to us…like not being a constant slave
3. Create the new way we want to live.
He informs us that by learning to say a Positive No, we will be able to make significant changes that support both our internal power and our external relationships.
I wish you list of energy to change, protect, and create the life you say you want.
Want to hear about another story that’s just like a dog trying to
catch his tail?
It goes like this:
Person A says, “You said you hated me!”
Person B says “I meant when you make fun of me. You make me feel stupid!”
Person A “If you say you hate me, you must mean it or you are stupid!”
Person B “God, if only you would just listen, but you always jump down my throat!”
I am sure you have been here at some time or another.
This fight is not going anywhere good. Someone will get hurt…either
emotionally, physically or both.
What is this fight about?
It could be about frustration or desperation or lack of any emotion.
I know people who never speak when things are “good” so the only time
they communicate is when they are angry.
If this is you…
You are going nowhere fast.
Someone is looking to place blame and someone is looking to be rescued.
Both brains are in screech mode and what’s more, both adults have left the room.
The people screaming at each other are two tantrum-throwing 5 year olds.
You need to find a way to “tap out” like wrestlers.
If this is a diagnosis of your relationship, get some help. Get some
clarity for yourself.
Go to a minister or a therapist or a VERY trusted friend.
You need a neutral person.
BTW, when you do decide to get help, remember to work on YOU!
You are the only person you can change.
Yep, that sucks, but that’s a fact.
No, I did not have to look at the bottom of my shoes for dog poop.
I unknowingly walked into a 12-step program last Friday.
Dis-ease wrapped around me like an itchy blanket. I was very uncomfortable, but walking out would had been just as uncomfortable and embarrassing. Hands folded in my lap, picking my fingers. My leg shaking up and down nervously… “Grant me the serenity to accept…. to change the things I can…. and the wisdom to know the difference”.
Light bulb goes off in my head.
Accept the things I cannot change!
I had been saying these exact words throughout the week so I would stop beating myself up over things I could not change like the economy and other people’s attitudes and actions!
Change the things I can… Whoa I had been thinking about all the things that are within my power to change, work, situations, relationships with myself, others.
The wisdom to know the difference. YES, I have had to stop and think when I am angry, upset, frustrated… “Is this something I can change, yes or no? If yes, then decide what I want to change it into. If no, then let it go and accept it as it is”.
I listened to the women in the circle as they said their name and shared. As I listened I thought some women had the same challenges as me!
Hi, my name is Kay, and I actually stepped into the right place.
P.S. As a post script I want to say that there is a stigma, I think, attached to 12-step programs probably because it is so closely associated with AA. But the 12-step program can be used for so many types of hang-ups, hurts and habits. With life for many people riddled with frustrations, challenges, anger and not knowing, I think programs like this are an opportunity to see we are not “the only ones” with issues. It is an opportunity to speak our minds and our hearts without judgment. And it is a time to listen to others and practice compassion. You may want to take a step and find out.
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