What are your repeated complaints about the people in your life?
- The people in my work life…
- My friends…
- My family…
- My partner/lover/lovers…
I know we’re told to not complain. And that being judgmental isn’t productive. But…
Your repeated resentments are a goldmine in showing you where you’re teaching others to treat you in a way you don’t like… and where you can make changes to shift this cause and effect.
Acceptance isn’t about saying everything under the sky is ok with you. Sure, on an deep, existential level, everything is ok. But on a practical express your self-worth level, people being flaky, lying, taking advantage, dumping their shit on you, not paying you back, breaking agreements, shuffling their feet in relationships, and on and on… isn’t ok.
And it’s ok that it isn’t ok.
Boundaries and clear communication about what you are and aren’t available for is a powerful way you express your self-love.
But, the thing is: people treat you how you teach them to treat you. You set the tone. If you don’t like pieces of how others are relating to you, it’s up to you to own your part and make shifts in how you teach them to treat you.
Points in case
1. You repeatedly attract players and go along with it believing something’s better than nothing.
You complain to your friends about the disappointment, confusion, and drama this creates. At some point instead of talking about being sick of it, you get up the courage to look in the mirror and ask yourself:
What invitation am I extending that invites this dynamic?
It could be many things. But, for example, maybe you find your dating persona is “confident” and leads with sexuality so others will find you desirable. In doing this you split off from your true, vulnerable self and these players are merely reflecting back to you your own split – available for sex and not much else. Perhaps you start practicing being real, instead of cool or sexy. Perhaps you check in with yourself about how you really feel and what you truly want and carry this with you in how you interact with others.
2. Your clients don’t: follow through on your agreements, are chronically late, don’t pay you on time, etc.
Do you have a very clear contract? Do you have retainer fees? Do you establish clear protocols before work begins? Are you willing to say no to clients who you sense will be difficult to deal with?
3. You have a friend, family member, co-worker who speaks in a harsh, critical way to you.
You feel obligated to put up with it. You’ve tried to talk to them but it hasn’t made a difference. You feel helpless.
Have you clearly said that you require people to speak to you with love and explained why? Have you written out examples of how said person could say the same thing with love? (They truly may not know how). Do you model this behavior to them? If it’s a friend or family member, have you set clear terms of what you’re available for and how you will respond if they won’t honor your request? Things like you will kindly call them out or that you’ll will get off the phone. You can do this. Just think of the people in your life that have taught you to be respectful. You can be this person.
4. Your partner, friend, neighbor, sibling, etc. obsessively calls, texts, writes to you when they’re upset.
You complain about how annoying and dramatic this behavior is but… you always respond! In essence, you’ve trained them that this is ok with you, even though it isn’t. Do you feel you must engage in this drama otherwise you’ll be abandoned? Do you feel compelled to rescue them from their own emotions? It’s time to shift out of drama and into respect and love. It’s time to lovingly let said person know you have a threshold for the kinds of communications you’re available to engage in and, with love, turn off the phone ringer until things calm down a bit.
None of this is about being mean or a hard ass.
It’s about valuing yourself and putting your self-love into motion by kindly and clearly letting others know how you’d like to be treated.
With love. With clarity. And because you have a desire to have fulfilling interactions that feel harmonious and win-win to all.
How are you going to teach people to treat you in ways that feel good to you this upcoming year? Can you name 3 specific things you will do to set a new tone?