Reblog: 3 Types Of People Who Are Holding You Back

by Henry Cloud

When you need to execute an ending of some sort, there will be people in your circle who will try to fight it or slow it down, because even if you aren’t paranoid, it doesn’t mean that someone isn’t out to get you or sabotage you. You have to be ready for that to occur, recognize it as inevitable and deal with it. Otherwise, other people will be in control of your life and decisions.

External resistances are those that come from other people. Their challenges and questions are not the helpful kind that a good confidante might provide. Sometimes the people in our business and personal lives actually stop or hinder us from making decisions they believe are not good for us. Right or wrong, they are acting out of what they believe are our best interests. That’s not the kind of resistance I’m referring to here. I’m referring to resistance from people who have ulterior, self-protective or self-interested motives.

Self-Absorbed Resisters

People will put up a resistance because your decision is going to affect them in some way, and they do not want that to change. But the truth is, many times there are endings that are going to affect someone, and that person does not have the kind of character to put his self-interest aside and see what is good for the company or the mission. Passively or actively, this person is on a sabotage mission and is not looking out for you.

This person can appear friendly, offering “advice” to “help” you, but he is really a wolf in sheep’s clothing. He will warn you of all the downsides, all that can go wrong, what you will lose and so on. Certainly there are times when we need that kind of advice, but this is not one of them. This situation I am referring to is one where this is not advice, but an attempt to keep you from going forward.

Threatened Resisters

Other times, resistance comes from someone who is threatened by you personally by what you are doing. Whether in business or personal life, when you do something difficult but worthy, it confronts people with their own lives. It activates all of their fears, and they quickly try to tell you the same things that they tell themselves. “It will never work. I know a lot of people who tried to do that, and they were sorry in the end.” The thing is that they are stuck, you are getting unstuck, and you cause them to look in the mirror and face themselves. Unconsciously, they realize if you can do it, they can do it. But to think about doing it scares them. They’ll talk you out of it so you both can be comfortable again.

The NoNos

NoNos are those who are highly skilled urgency killers. John Kotter says if they cannot undermine attempts at diminishing a contentment with the status quo, they create anxiety or anger and the flurry of useless activity associated with a fake sense of urgency. NoNos are motivated by many things, and as a psychologist, I can tell you that I’ve seen them in many instances. They can be pretty inflexible. They often are not open to what we call “assimilation and accommodation,” a process by which normal people take in new data, accommodate ourselves to it and change our minds.

Not so with NoNos. Instead of taking in new data, they have all sorts of reasons for rejecting it, devaluing it and undermining any accommodation that anyone would be close to making with it. The best way to handle NoNos is not to engage them. They’re trying to stall you, and they are not going to change, so to spend any time trying to convince them is to allow them to use their strategy of derailing. You talk to them, they win.

When you start to make your move down a new path, obstacles will come as a result. Getting things done is hard, or more people would be making changes. So accept the fact that endings are difficult and hard to implement. You will be going through new waters, and there will be waves. Big bumpy ones, and it takes courage and perseverance to keep going.

To read the original post go here.

 

Reblog: The Reality – Choices Divide

by Henry Cloud

Successful people realize that just because someone is unhappy with them does not require that they give up their purpose, fold their cards, or change. They realize that making some people unhappy is just part of the deal—and they keep going. I once heard Tony Blair say that when you realize that every decision divides, it really helps. It is just part of life. When you turn to the right, there will be some who want you to go to the left, and vice versa. It is the nature of making choices. When we accept that every decision divides, we quit trying to do the impossible, i.e., pleasing everyone, and we begin making the right choices, knowing that our choices will divide.

Psychological research and experience tell us that people-pleasing is not a formula for happiness or success. Happy people do not compare themselves to others or overly concern themselves with others’ opinions of them. They are directed from the inside—their personal values and convictions and staying true to themselves is an inner compass they will not violate. Research shows that people with intrinsic motivations— motivations that come from their own hearts—are the successful ones. The people who reach goals are the ones who do what they themselves have decided to do, from their own hearts, not because of pressure from others.

Read the original post here.

Reblog: How to Overcome Feeling Insecure and Needy in Your Relationships

by Sharon Martin

Many people feel insecure at least some of the time. Some people feel insecure most of the time about most things. Other people may occasionally feel insecure or only in certain situations or with certain people.

Explore why you’re feeling insecure

Sometimes insecurity is the result of trauma. If you’ve experienced a betrayal or hurt, such as cheating or lying or abuse in your current or past relationship, it’s normal to want to protect yourself from further hurt. You put up your guard and feel anxious, on edge, or worried. Your nervous system goes into overdrive searching for evidence of danger. You might also notice that these feelings of insecurity remind you of childhood wounds. Children tend to internalize harm caused by others and believe it’s their fault – because they’re bad, flawed, unworthy, unlovable. This sets the stage for feeling insecure in adult relationships.

Other times it’s not so easy to spot where insecurity began. You may have a pervasive feeling that you’re not “good enough.” You worry about what people think. You don’t want to disappoint or displease others. You try to live up to someone else’s expectations or standards. Comparison leads to insecurity. It makes you feel “less than” compared to others that seem prettier, thinner, smarter, stronger, or funnier.

Love and acceptance from others does not solve insecurity

Most people think the solution to insecurity is having others love and accept them. It isn’t. I remember a painful experience I had in middle school. I had a great group of friends, felt accepted, cared for and wanted…until they rejected me. Friends and lovers will come and go. Sometimes they drift away. Sometimes they storm off after an intense fight. Sometimes they die. If you’re counting on others to make you feel secure, you will eventually be disappointed.

When people feel insecure in a relationship, they often turn to their partners seeking reassurance and validation. A partner can never provide the sense of security you’re seeking. Relationships are always uncertain. There are no guarantees that your partner will be dependable or faithful or with you for the rest of your life. The only way to feel secure in your relationship is to seek security and confidence within yourself.

Security comes from loving yourself and knowing you’re resilient

Feeling safe and secure means that you know you can cope with whatever life throws your way. You can’t control what your partner does or if this relationship ends, but you can control your response and your feelings. It’s empowering to know that you can cope with the unexpected and messy parts of life. This doesn’t mean that you won’t be hurt or angry or heart broken. It just means that you have confidence in your ability to get through really tough situations and feelings.

Chances are you’ve already gotten through some pretty challenging things in your life. When I reflect on my experiences, I’m in awe of some of the things I’ve overcome. I didn’t always do it with grace, but I did get through more pain than I imagined I could. I suspect the same is true for you.

Life experience shows us that we can endure a lot of adversity and uncertainty. You can not only survive, but thrive when you choose not to let life’s curve balls keep you down or feeling like a victim. This is where confidence comes from. It doesn’t come from reassuring words or promises from your partner or anyone else.

Instead of seeking validation from others, reassure yourself

Look inside yourself for the validation you’re seeking. Honestly, no one can give you want you can’t give to yourself. Your partner might say the words you crave: “You’re the most beautiful woman I’ve ever seen. I can’t imagine my life without you.” The problem is, if you don’t believe this to be true deep in your soul, you’re not going to believe it when anyone else says it to you.  If you want others to make you feel worthy, you’ll always be chasing this approval. Instead:

  • Tune into your own feelings. Spend some quality time with yourself.
  • Identify your feelings. A list of feeling words can be helpful (try this one).
  • Validate your feelings. “It’s normal to feel angry when my roommate drinks all the coffee and doesn’t buy any to replace it.” Or, “I understand why I feel anxious when Mary comes home from work late.”
  • Identify your strengths. Everyone has good qualities. Remind yourself every single day of your positive traits and skills. I promise you won’t become conceited.
  • When you catch yourself worrying about what might happen, gently bring yourself back to the present. You can ask yourself: How likely is this to happen? Is there anything I can do about it?
  • Remind yourself that you can cope with whatever happens.
  • Soothe yourself. Recognize when you need comfort and give it to yourself. You can calm yourself by listening to music, taking a hot bath, engaging in repetitive motion such as walking, massaging your temples, sipping a cup of herbal tea, or using essential oils.

Read the original post here.

TED Reblog: Should emotions be taught in schools?

by 

Our unresolved, unacknowledged feelings can lead us into anxiety, arguments and worse. Some educators believe it’s time to give our kids emotional instruction along with their ABCs.

Who taught you how to identify and manage your emotions, how to recognize them when they arose and navigate your way through them? For many adults, the answer is: No one. You hacked your way through those confusing thickets on your own. Although navigating our inner landscape was not something that was taught to us in school, it should be, contend a number of researchers. They believe emotional skills should rank as high in importance in children’s educations as math, reading, history and science.

Why do emotions matter? Research has found that people who are emotionally skilled perform better in school, have better relationships, and engage less frequently in unhealthy behaviors. Plus, as more and more jobs are becoming mechanized, so-called soft skills — which include persistence, stress management and communication — are seen as a way to make humans irreplaceable by machine. There has been a growing effort in American schools to teach social and emotional learning (SEL), but these tend to emphasize interpersonal skills like cooperation and communication.

Kids are often taught to ignore or cover over their emotions. Many Western societies view emotions as an indulgence or distraction, says University of California-Santa Barbara sociologist Thomas Scheff, a proponent of emotional education. Our emotions can give us valuable information about the world, but we’re often taught or socialized not to listen to them. Just as dangerous, Scheff says, is the practice of hiding one emotion behind another. He has found that men, in particular, tend to hide feelings of shame under anger, aggression and, far too often, violence.

How does one go about teaching emotions? One of the most prominent school programs for teaching about emotions is RULER, developed in 2005 by Marc Brackett, David Caruso and Robin Stern of the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence. The multiyear program is used in more than 1,000 schools, in the US and abroad, across grades K-8. The name, RULER, is an acronym for its five goals: recognizing emotions in oneself and others; understanding the causes and consequences of emotions; labeling emotional experiences with an accurate and diverse vocabulary; and expressing and regulating emotions in ways that promote growth.

As a strategy, children are taught to focus on the underlying theme of an emotion rather than getting lost in trying to define it. When an emotion grips you, explains Stern, understanding its thematic contours can help “name it to tame it.” Even though anger is experienced differently by different people, she explains, “the theme underlying anger is the same. It’s injustice or unfairness. The theme that underlies disappointment is an unmet expectation. The theme that underlies frustration is feeling blocked on your way to a goal. Pinning down the theme can “help a person be seen and understood and met where she is,” says Stern.

RULER’s lessons are woven into all classes and subjects. So, for example, if “elated’ is the emotional vocabulary word under discussion, a teacher would ask students in an American history class to link “elated” to the voyage of Lewis and Clark. Instruction reaches beyond the classroom, too; kids are prompted to talk with their parents or caregivers about when they last felt elated. Researchers at the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence has found RULER schools tend to see less-frequent bullying, lower anxiety and depression, more student leadership and higher grades. So why isn’t emotional education the norm rather than the exception?

Surprising fact: While scientists and educators agree on the need to teach emotions, they don’t agree on how many there are and what they are. RULER’s curriculum consists of hundreds of “feeling words,” including curious, ecstatic, hopeless, frustrated, jealous, relieved and embarrassed. Other scholars’ lists of emotions have ranged in number from two to eleven. Scheff suggests starting students out with six: grief, fear, anger, pride, shame and excessive fatigue.

While psychology began to be studied as a science more than a century ago, up to now it has focused more on identifying and treating disorders. Scheff, who has spent years studying one taboo emotion — shame — and its destructive impact on human actions, admits, “We don’t know much about emotions, even though we think we do, and that goes for the public and for researchers.” Or, as Virginia Woolf so beautifully put it, “The streets of London have their map; but our passions are uncharted.”

Parents can start to encourage their kids’ emotional awareness with a simple prompt “Tell me about some of your best moments,” a phrase Scheff has used to initiate discussions with his university students. But he and Stern agree that schools can’t wait until academics have sorted out the name and number of emotions before they act. “We know we have emotions all day long, whether we’re aware of them or not,” Stern points out. Let’s teach kids how to ride those moment-by-moment waves, instead of getting tossed around.

find the original post here.

My Love Note Quilt

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I just finished hanging this new quilt I made for Valentine’s Day. I need to finish hand quilting the empty spaces between the envelopes but I wanted to get it up so that I could enjoy it this week. The pattern comes from the Missouri Star Quilt Co and their quick video tutorials on You Tube.

Reblog: 4 Ways to Keep Drama Out of Your Life

by Dr. Henry Cloud

Life is full of traps. Sometimes this fact is never more apparent than in our relationships with others. One of the biggest traps that we all fall into at one time or another is getting stuck in the whirlpool of unnecessary drama.

You know what I’m talking about: that friend who may have lots of good attributes, but always manages to trigger an argument whenever you’re together; that coworker who seems to only ever want to talk about your mutual colleagues and the zillion ways they’re doing everything wrong; that fragile friend whose feelings get hurt no matter what you do or say; or what about that person who you’re always having to save from the assorted troubles that seem to follow them around wherever they go?

Getting bogged down by these kinds of people and issues can be seriously demotivating. They zap you of your energy. Left alone, these relationships will end badly.

Most drama is avoidable by laying down solid boundaries.

Boundaries are an invisible property line that separates everything that is yours from everything that is not yours. They keep the good stuff in and the bad stuff out. Personal boundaries allow you to have ownership over your own thoughts, feelings, actions and reactions, while freeing you from being responsible for anyone else’s. Virtually everyone sets some form of boundaries without thinking about it, but when we consciously define our boundaries, we gain a huge degree of control over our happiness, comfort and the quality of our relationships.

Be Direct

The thing about dramatic people is that they tend to believe that whatever it is that they’re going through is more important than anything anyone else has going on in their life. There’s a kind of reality distortion field around people like this and the only way to break through to them is to be direct. Tell them that you don’t feel like they show up to hear about what’s going on in your life in the same way that you show up for them. Tell them that you rely on their support too. Being direct is a proactive step, and will free you from regularly ‘reacting’ to the other person. If they care about the relationship, they’ll make an effort.

Be aware that this is a pattern for the other person, and in order to really change this dynamic, you may have to remind them a few times. This is a boundary that defines you as equals in your relationship.

Be A Leader

Another way to be proactive rather than reactive is to be in charge of the conversation or the activity. This doesn’t mean dominating the conversation, it means taking responsibility for where you’re going to wind up. You get what you allow. If gossiping makes you feel uncomfortable, then lead the conversation somewhere else. If someone only ever wants to hang out in loud bars and winds up losing control, suggest an alternative and tell them that doesn’t sound like a good way to spend your time. The boundary between being a leader or a follower will either define you as someone who is in control of how you feel, or as someone who lets others control how you feel.

Be Positive

There is a natural boundary between positivity and negativity. All you need to do is enforce it. When someone comes to you with nothing but negativity, be a force of relentless positivity. Sometimes this means shining a light on the good sides of a situation that they are blinded to because of their negative mindset, other times it may mean actually switching the topic of conversation to something lighter or more worthwhile.

Emotionally intelligent people recognize the difference between someone opening up their heart and sharing something when they need support, and letting someone simply spout off useless negativity. When you recognize that the former is happening, you can either let it happen and get stuck in it and let it steal your energy, or you can proactively guard against it by moving the conversation in a more positive direction. Drama is never positive. It never fixes anything. Who wants to sit around and makes things worse?

Be Brave

The fear of hurting someone else’s feelings prevents us from doing a lot of things that might otherwise be the healthier choice. Likewise, the fear of isolating yourself from your friends can motivate you to stay in toxic relationships. It takes a certain kind of bravery to cut someone out of your life. Bravery exists on one side of a boundary between action and passivity.

Much in the same way that we must prune plants to shape and encourage their growth, so too must we make productive pruning a part of our own lives. If you’ve taken the steps to try to shape a relationship with someone close to you, and yet the drama persists, it may be time to let go of that relationship until that person can function at the same level of maturity that you need your close relationships to reflect.

Just about everyone will tell you that they hate drama, even people that are constantly living in it. If you really do want to seriously limit the drama in your life, all you have to do is set boundaries.

Find the original articles here.

 

Reblog: How to Maintain Your Sense of Self in Relationships

by Sharon Martin

Do you seem to get swallowed up in relationships? Does your sense of self disappear when you’re strongly attached to someone else? This “loss of self” happens, whether you’ve been married for decades or are newly dating, when the other person or relationship become your identity.

You become all about the other person. Your needs get sidelined while the other person’s needs and interests take center stage. Your mission becomes making him/her happy (regardless of your own feelings). You focus on what s/he wants to do. You stop pursuing your hobbies, seeing your friends and family, and you defer to what s/he wants.

 

Dependency is healthy; codependency is not

Instead of being “Mary”, your identity becomes “Mary, Jim’s girlfriend” or simply “Jim’s girlfriend”. This feels good, especially during the intensity of the beginning of a relationship. In fact, this obsession of sorts is quite normal in the early stages of a new-found love. It’s not healthy, however, when it’s one-sided; when your partner isn’t equally interested in giving and pleasing you.

You may feel you’ve willingly made these compromises. Or you may not have even noticed that you were giving up parts of yourself. Often this is a pattern that’s been repeated in relationships your entire life and you may not have had a strong sense of your interests or priorities to begin with.

For others, this may have happened due to your partner’s jealousy or manipulation. In other words, you were pressured into giving up parts of yourself and you fear losing the relationship if you don’t keep him/her happy.

 

You can maintain your sense of self in relationships by:

  • Knowing what you like and what matters to you
  • Asking for what you want, rather than always deferring to his/her wants
  • Spending time with your own friends and family
  • Pursuing your goals
  • Staying true to your values
  • Making time for your hobbies and interests
  • Saying “no” when something really doesn’t work or feel good to you
  • Spending time by yourself
  • Not keeping yourself “small” or hidden to please others

 

Why stay true to yourself in a relationship?

What do you imagine will happen if you keep yourself hidden in your relationships? Will your resentments grow and fester? Will this be a satisfying relationship long-term? Will you miss out on achieving your goals? Will your health suffer? Will your friends and family miss you? Will the world be deprived of your unique gifts?

Inter-dependence or healthy dependence involves two complete individuals who come together to support each other. From this inter-dependency, you develop trust and safety that helps you navigate through the world, but you’re not reliant on the other person or the relationship for your identity or self-worth. In secure relationships, partners support each other in pursuing their own interests and other friendships. They aren’t jealous or demanding. Couples need time together and time apart. In other words, loving, trusting relationships are important, but they needn’t overshadow YOU.

Read the original post here.

You Tube: Victim-Persecutor-Rescuer Triangle, How to Win

by Recovery Girls

Misty shares here some examples regarding the Drama Triangle or the Victim-Persecutor-Rescuer Triangle. This is a game best won by not playing it. Easy to fall into, this automatic back and forth way of relating ultimately leaves each person unsatisfied in the relationship with never ending conflict. We have many other choices available to us in how we relate.

Reblog: Relationship Expectations Everyone Should Have

by Dr. Laura

In every relationship, there are basic needs and expectations that everyone has a right to expect. If you’re not getting them, then the relationship is not a match. Here are eight relationship expectations every person should have:

  1. Affection. You hold hands, kiss, hug, and give each other back or foot rubs. Physical affection is very important.

  2. Compassion. Whether you have a stomach ache or a heartache, it needs to matter to the other person when you’re not feeling OK.

  3. Respect. You can disagree with each other, but there shouldn’t be any name-calling or ridiculing. If somebody is constantly ridiculing you and then following it up with, “I’m only kidding,” they’re a jerk – get rid of them.

  4. Consideration. A considerate person thinks about how they impact you. They don’t have to give you everything you ask for or do everything you want, but they have to consider what you need, what you’d like, and what you have to say.

  5. Time. Some people like a lot of time, a medium amount of time, and no time. A “no time” person is not going to get along with a “medium time” or “a lot of time” person. You have to be more matched in how much time you’re willing and able to give each other. For example, I always wanted dinner at 6.  That’s an important time for me because it’s the end of the day when you’re breaking bread and talking about everything. That’s the life I knew I wanted, and I wasn’t going to be with anybody for whom dinner at 6 was not a desire.

  6. Interests. It’s reasonable to expect that your partner not only show interest in you but also the things you’re interested in, even if they may not be interested in those things themselves.

  7. Intimacy. Intimacy isn’t sex – it’s being known. Over the weekend, I asked a couple who has been married a long time what makes them glad they’re married to each other. The woman said, “He lets me be me. Nobody else let me be me or accepted me for who I am.” I then asked the guy, who said, “She is sweet to me.” That is probably the number one thing married men want from their wives. Many women think it’s sex, however, what men really want is a woman who is nice to them. Men are very uncomplicated.

  8. Generosity. Gifts are nice, but generosity really means that your partner is generous of themselves and their time. He or she goes out of their way to help, soothe, and take care of you.

If you are not having these basic needs met in your relationship, you need to sit down and talk about what expectations you each have, and discuss those expectations without fighting. Just simply say, “This is what I need.”

Find Dr. Laura’s blog post here.

Reblog: Where is My Anger Coming From?

by Henry Cloud

Many people conceal their negative feelings of anger, sadness, and fear. These people are unable to cope with good and bad because they have never processed these negative feelings, and they suffer from many problems, such as fear of relationships, depressions, and anxiety as a result. Negative feelings are valid, and they must be dealt with so they won’t cause problems.

Anger, our most basic negative emotion, tell us that something is wrong. We tend to protect the good we don’t want to lose. Anger is a signal that we are in danger of losing something that matters to us. When people are taught to suppress their anger, they are taught to be out of touch with what matters to them. It is good to feel angry because anger warns us of danger and shows us what needs protecting. But, we are not to be mean or abusive in our attempt to solve a problem. This would mean to resolve it in some unloving way and would ultimately hurt us as well as each other.

Major consequences for denying our angry feelings range all the way from psychophysiological disorders, such as headaches and ulcers, to character disorders, such as passive-aggressions, to the inability to work, to serious depression and panic. Any way you look at it, denying anger keeps one from getting problems solved.

Another problem with denying anger is that it turns into bitterness and leads to a critical and unforgiving spirit. Instead of denying anger, we must own it and find its source. As we examine our anger, we can find out what we are trying to protect. Anger may be protecting an injured vulnerability or a will that was controlled. We may be under condemnation from someone and need to get out from under perfectionism. Whatever the source, anger tells you there is a problem, and it should never be denied.

We may discover that our anger is protecting something bad, such as pride, omnipotence, control or perfectionism. Maybe we feel angry because we are losing control of another person. In either case, if we deny our anger, we can’t get to the source. Anger, then, is helpful because it is a sign something is being protected, either good or bad.

See the original article here.

You Tube: Bono & Eugene Peterson | The Psalms

Published on Apr 26, 2016

This short film documents the friendship between Bono (of the band U2) and Eugene Peterson (author of contemporary-language Bible translation The Message) revolving around their common interest in the Psalms. Based on interviews conducted by Fuller Seminary faculty member David Taylor and produced in association with Fourth Line Films, the film highlights in particular a conversation on the Psalms that took place between Bono, Peterson, and Taylor at Peterson’s Montana home.