Tag: personal growth

How to stay TRUE to YOUSELF

Staying true to yourself is the most important and loving thing you can do. It isn’t easy because we can forget ourselves in the activities that we do. I know that I am one to forget myself. Over the past few years I am staying true to myself more and more. It can take many forms, some harder than others. The harder the task the more deeply I grow within myself. It is a beautiful, peaceful, and rewarding event to do.

Someone close to me has been having a hard time staying true to himself (or listening to himself). He has become sad and angry because he was scared to do what he needed to do for fear of losing me. I wanted to share with you the ways I have learned to listen to myself.

1. Say NO!

Saying no is a huge deal. When someone says “no” it can upset other people. If I don’t want to kiss on the first date, I will say no. Saying “no” gives you POWER. It also can show you about the other person. When someone hears “no”, they can either respect that or push you. If a person can’t handle hearing no isn’t your place to give in and do what they want. You lose respect for yourself.

DON’T GO AGAINST YOURSELF TO PLEASE SOMEONE ELSE! Say NO and MEAN IT

2. Set Boundaries and Stick to them

Know what your limits are and don’t break them. If I don’t like sleeping in the same bed with someone, I need to set that boundary with my partner and keep the wall up. This does two things. It lets me know that I AM IMPORTANT and WORTHY of my personal space and needs. Second, it let’s the other person know how they need to RESPECT ME. If I am constantly breaking my own boundaries, it will shows others that I am weak and will cater to them. PEOPLE WILL TAKE ADVANTAGE!

3. Know what you want and why

One of the only ways to stick to NO and your boundaries is to know what you want and why. I know that I can’t sleep in the same bed with someone for more than 4 days because it causes me to lose my energy and strength. I become irritable and lazy. Since I do not want to feel that way I set these limits and I say NO. KNOW WHAT YOU WANT AND WHY YOU (truly) WANT IT! This is such an important factor in being able to do the first two points. You LOSE YOURSELF every time you don’t know what you want and why.

The why is just as important as the want. Knowing why gives you strength during those times you need to say no. Knowing why creates a strong bond within yourself because there is complete clarity.

4. Never lose yourself for someone else

This is probably one of the hardest to do. It creeps up slowly. You do this by giving in to tiny things over and over again through time. If you love to volunteer and your partner doesn’t, you may find yourself slowly finding excuses to not do the charity work you always did. Going to see his parents one Tuesday night instead of volunteering at the local soup kitchen, turns in to canceling three or four times to never going again. THIS HAPPENS ALL THE TIME! If you love dancing around the house when you feel an energy flow, but are too afraid of what your partner will think (if they live with you), DON’T STOP! You want to keep this part of you because it is the part of you that loves and breathes. It is who you are at the core. Yes, it is true people can help you find yourself. If you are doing it because you know deep inside it’s better than who you were before.

5. You don’t need to care about the same things are your partner or friends

It is okay to have different interests. Why would you want to spend all your time doing stuff together? I used to do EVERYTHING with my ex’s and friends. I never did things I liked to do because it was easier to go along with the ride. I learned over time that having different interests kept distance in the relationship. Distance isn’t a bad thing. It can create desire and a chance to miss the person you love. Jonathan rarely does things without me. This caused a great deal of tension in the relationship because he wouldn’t put his needs first. Instead of going to basketball every Wednesday, he would watch movies with me all night. I know he wants to get the exercise and hang out with friends, but he was afriad to leave my side. (I never wanted to go because I am not a big fan of basketball.)

It is PERFECTLY FINE to not like or care about everything your partner does.

6. Walk Away when needed

If something doesn’t suit you any more for whatever reason, WALK AWAY! Do not stay in a relationship because you are afraid to lose love, money or attention. Only be in a relationship if you feel it is what you need to do for you. If someone is disrepecting you constantly, leave them. If you know you need to move out the house because you need space to think. DO IT! Staying in a relationship that doesn’t serve you on a deeper level is more damaging to your soul than leaving. Leaving when you feel trapped is freeing and can open your mind to something bigger.

Take it from someone who spent 5 years with someone not following every bullet mentioned in this article. When the marriage ended, I HAD NO IDEA WHO I WAS! I cried. I felt lost and confused. It took me years to build myself up again. It was the best thing that happened to me. I wouldn’t let it happen again. It’s terrifying not knowing who you are because everything you thought you knew about you was gone. Gone because the one you gave it too was no longer around. STAY TRUE TO WHO YOU ARE! It is not worth losing.

(These can be used in intiment realtionships, friendships, or even the jobs we have)

How Do We Play The Victim?

Everyone has played the victim at some point in their lives. It’s what we do as kids. Certain people never grow out of it. As a teacher, my student’s play the victim all the time. Some more than others. If someone gets in trouble for talking to someone, they tell me, “she was talking too.” Instead of saying sorry teacher, they put the blame on the other person. Of course, this is a very basic form of playing the victim. I have found from personal experience there are many more different ways it presents itself. Here are the 6 I have seen.

1. Doesn’t Take Responsibility, Blames Others

This is probably the most common form I have seen. It’s when the person blames someone else so they don’t have to take responsibility for their mistakes or problems. I have done this many times. I had a rough week at work because I didn’t finish my lesson planning on time. I blamed it on the internet not working (which it wasn’t working) instead of just saying “hey, I overbooked myself this week. I am sorry.” I could have lesson planned earlier in the week when I normally do instead of waiting until the last minute. Things happen and we make mistakes. It is okay. How we handle those mistakes shows us if we are “the victim” or not. I played the victim by not taking responsibility for the fact I waited until the last minute. The internet here is unpredictable and I have known this. If I had done the work on Tuesday, like I do every week it would have been done.

It can be hard to admit situations like this because it can affect the ego or make you look bad. It takes courage and strength to admit you were in the wrong. It is easier and less “painful” to blame it on external situations, like the internet not working. I think some people use this as a way not justify why they broke the rules or did the things they did. It takes time to learn how to be honest and take responsibility for your actions. It does start with one situation at a time.

2. Holds Grudges, No Forgiveness

When someone doesn’t forgive or let things go it can cause anger and resent to be present. This hurts you more than anyone. It has an effect on those around you because you tend to push them away. The only people I have held grudges against was my mom and dad. It took me a really long time to forgive and understand the things they did when I was little. As I began to look within myself, I began to see that they did the best they could with what they had. I hated my father for not letting me express myself in the ways I wanted too. I hated him for not allowing me to chose the clothes I wanted. I had a grudge towards my mom for giving my sister more attention and money than me. I hated my mom for taking the side of my ex husband during my divorce. It took some time to be able to let those things go. I had to yell and scream at my father. I had to disown my mother. All during that time, I worked on myself so I could be the person I wanted to be regardless of their actions.

This is not easy. It is probably one of the hardest things to do, to forgive and let go. It takes time to truly understand deeply what this does to our lives. Of course, you need to protect yourself. It is a two way street. If you forgive someone and they don’t grow with you, maybe it’s time to walk away. Forgiveness is for your own peace. You can forgive and walk away if you need to. I have forgiven people and left the relationship. I forgave my mother and father. The relationship with them changed for the better, allowing us to have the relationship we have now. Even if you forgive and leave the person, you still have a peace inside you. That is the most important: being at peace.

3. Doesn’t Trust Others, Everyone is Against Them

This one doesn’t always appear in people who play the victim. It does show frequently though. When you play the victim you are constantly thinking that people are doing things on purpose and trying to make you miserable. It makes logical sense that a “victim” would not trust others. With my job, I have issues with my boss sometimes (don’t we all). There are others that have issues with her much more than I do. I believe part of this is because they think it is all because of our boss. My boss is not perfect and part of her personality drives me insane. I have learned to go with it. To stay in my lane and follow the rules. If I follow the rules whether I like them or not, she leaves me alone. I don’t think she is out to fire me or get me in trouble because I do what I am supposed to do. And when I don’t do what is required of me, I take responsibility for it (this was not always the case, I just learned this a few months ago). Others have been written up for not following the rules, then go and blame her for the problem. They take it personally and believe she is against them.

I have found that if you take responsibility for your actions and consequences people will trust you more. You have to be willing to trust others first. People don’t trust you if you don’t trust them. I confronted my boss about the issues I was having with her. The meeting did not go well at all. She wrote me up from confronting her. I left feeling like she is against me and doesn’t care. Since I felt unsettled about the meeting, I took a good look at myself. I took responsibility for my part of the “failed” meeting and apologized. In the end, the write up never went into my file. She and I also communicate much better now.

4. Argues Quickly and Easily

People that play the victim will argue over everything. They feel it is not their fault and other people are wrong. This causes them to argue and debate every situation because it doesn’t suit their needs or wants. I know I have done this in the past and sometimes now. I am working on listening before I speak. It is a hard thing to do. Not every feeling of disappointment or hurt requires an argument. This weekend I argued with my boyfriend over cleaning. It was his weekend to clean and he didn’t do it when I wanted him to do it. I felt like the victim and started an argument. The argument went nowhere because I had no real merit for my anger.

When we stop playing the victim we don’t argue about every little thing that bothers us. We tend to examine the situation and have a different reaction that doesn’t always lead to a fight. Allowing ourselves to acknowledge we may be wrong or we may be overreacting creates space for us to not be the victim.  

5. Their Life is Lacking, Nothing is Good Enough

They tend to blame their lack of something on other things. An example would be that they are stressed about money yet they are the ones that made the decision to quit a job or spend money they don’t have. A lot of women blame their loneliness on the fact that men are worthless and horrible. My question is what are these people doing to cause themselves to not have the money or attract a good man? We attract what we want by the energy we put out. If you are always playing the victim you will never be able to appreciate a good thing when you have it.

I used to blame my failed marriage on my ex-husband. It was his fault that we got divorced. He didn’t try and he cheated. I lacked a good marriage because he was incapable of being the husband I needed. However, after some deep consideration, I realized that it was my fault too. I was controlling and quite frankly a bitch. I can’t expect to have a fantastic relationship when I am a controlling bitch.

Our lives lack certain things because of our energy or attitude towards certain situations. Now, there are people who actually are lacking because of external circumstances. That is why we have the black lives matter movement and people fighting for the rights of underprivileged people.

What’s Next

Stay tuned for the how to turn your life from Victim to Victor.