PREVIOUS: Being Right #5c
IDEAS for changing the aBR pattern (cont.)
🛠⛏. Identify what you DO want
Start by noticing what you’re thinking – usually about what you don’t like – & then state the reverse. You may think:
• “If they really cared about me they wouldn’t act that way!” So what you do want is acceptance, belonging, consideration, respect
• “I hate when people lie to me!” So what you do want is being told the truth & reliability, so you can depend on others (feel safe) ….etc….
🚀 Take Actions
Focus on specific things you can do or say each day that will create more of what you want. It will help if you improve what you say to yourself & how you behave. BUT mainly –
💛 If you want trust, caring, fun, intellectual stimulation, reliability, ‘sanity’, sobriety, spirituality…… look for people who already have those qualities & want to share them with you – without you having to rescue or fix them! (modified from ‘Focused Attention’_)
💋 💋 💋
People in good (but always imperfect) relationships don’t worry about Being Right
Our scientifically-oriented society values BR over almost everything else. But then if one person feels they’ve ‘won’, the other will feel like a loser
😱 Ironically, when we correctly focus on our own happiness via self-care (not narcissistically), some needy people will accuse us of being spoiled or selfish, which tells us where they’re at
However, if we co-dependently give in or always say “Yes dear”, we will feel bad & progressively become dis-empowered.
🚦 A recent Australian experiment in couple’s counseling asked a husband to agree with everything his wife said to avoid arguments – for 2 weeks. The effort was a disaster & quickly called off because the man began to feel terrible about himself, & ironically the wife became hostile, because she knew he wasn’t always being honest.
They found that agreeing – just to agree – doesn’t work. There are many variables to consider if both partners are to feel good about themselves & each other.
MAIN requirement: Believe in what you’re agreeing with!
In GOOD relationships – partners have the ability:
• to see the “bigger picture” when making decisions, by deciding what’s truly important, what’s less so & what not at all
• to make their partner’s needs & feelings as important as their own (but not more so – except in dire circumstances, like a severe illness, death of family, loss of job….., but only temporarily!) Then you the support person needs to take your stress to Al-Anon, therapy, church, Massage, good friends…..)
• to experience joy when their partner is happy
• Even for couples wanting to make things work, joint decisions about marital or family issues can be difficult – so it takes willingness to make mistakes, apologizing & trying again
✳ Keeping the focus on yourself (your hidden agenda, real motivation, emotions, needs….) instead of pointing fingers – is the only way to keep things on an even keel
The next time an argument is beginning to heat up, ask yourself:
* Am I just wanting / demanding to be right in this situation?
* Can I let go of wanting to fight-to-be-right?
* Can I be OK with disagreement – even if I’m legitimately in the right?
* Can I simply admit my error, and then ask for what I need?
* Can I choose to be happy instead of “dead-right?”
The goal in any discussion & plan is for both people (or members of a group) to be respected & heard. ALSO – Kindness helps! Successful interactions add to feeling loved & valued, creating even more happiness. (More…)