You, Me, Myself and I!
February…the shortest month…sometimes feels like the longest!! Not only is much of the country dealing with the Polar Vortex and one of the worst winters we’ve seen in years, but February also holds stress for a lot of people. The stress of NOT having a Valentine, the stress of what to get your Valentine, the stress of do I even want a Valentine? Lots of expectation, lots of disappointment…seriously, is it March yet?
This month on my new radio show, HOLY SHIFT!, (airing the 1st and 3rd Mondays of the month on International Life Coach Radio, listen and call in live or enjoy the archived shows at your leisure!) my co-host, fellow coach and trainer, and hilarious friend, Barb Heenan, and I have been discussing relationships. Part 1 focused on the relationships we have with others.
Oftentimes, people think they have relationships only with those closest to them…significant other, immediate family, etc. But we have relationships with everyone with whom we come into contact. We have a relationship with our dentist, the barista who knows our coffee order, our boss and our bosses boss, our team members at the office, our pets, our kids little league coaches, teachers, and other parents. We even have a relationship with the person who cut us off in traffic this morning!
Obviously, each relationship has a different priority in our life. The relationship with your children may be more important to you than your doctor…that is, until you are sick. Then, that relationship moves closer to the top of the list. Hopefully, most of your relationships are working for you. But what about those that aren’t?
Take a moment and think of the relationships in your life that bring you joy. We want to continue to nurture those and make them a priority. However, sometimes those relationships that are “easy” get pushed to the back because our more challenging relationships suck up our energy.
Now, take a minute to think about those people in your life that are currently challenging you. Think of one or two things that specifically bug you about him or her. This is where it gets interesting…and be honest…where in your life are you mirroring that behavior?
I know, I know, you don’t show that annoying behavior anywhere in your life! You’re not that annoying/whinny/negative, etc.! But this can be a super powerful exercise. Really think about it. If your boss is always criticizing you, who might you be constantly criticizing? Your kids? Spouse? Co-worker? It might be that you’re criticizing yourself all the time. (BTW, want to learn to stop beating yourself up? Call me, we can change that!) You may have heard before that what you don’t like in others is often a reflection of something you don’t like about yourself. That’s a hard thing to hear…I get it! But, I’m challenging you here…really think about this and let me know what you come up with!
In our Relationships – Part Deux show, we focused on the relationship we have with ourselves. Our most important relationship is the one we have with our self, yet this relationship is often kicked to the back of the attention line. If we look here first, although most people are very resistant to that, and create a more loving and supporting relationship with our self, we can then learn to make a conscious decision or plan on how we can improve our outward relationships.
In all of our relationships, we must look at what Barb and I called, bonding and boundaries. Bonding with ourselves and others and setting boundaries with ourselves and others. How do you honor yourself and your own values? We focus so much of our attention on others, we often don’t have anything left for ourselves. So what can you change? How can you change? And how will that effect your other relationships?
We often don’t set boundaries for fear of being thought of as selfish. It can be uncomfortable. But how are you setting personal boundaries and saying no to others and yes to yourself. Then, we often spend much of our time bonding with others through negativity. At work, do you commiserate (seriously, I want to write ‘bit*h and moan’ here) with your colleagues on everything that’s wrong? Do you discuss with other parents at your childs school all the reasons why something’s not working? Do you find solice by talking with your siblings about your crazy mother? Are you bonding…yes? Are there more productive ways to bond with others…YES!!!!
I just had a birthday. I love to celebrate and I usually celebrate all month long. My family and friends kept asking me, ‘what are we doing for your birthday?‘ I was grateful they wanted to celebrate with me, but I had been traveling, at the tail end of a cold, and had been really busy. All I wanted was to stay home all day, with the dog, and do laundry, run past-due errands, clean my house, etc. That sounded so delightful to me, but, holy cow, did I get push back!! I communicated very clearly to my family and friends that this was truly what I wanted and that we could plan a fun-tivity for March. I honored my own wishes to take the day for myself. Truth be told, one of my sisters wore me down, in a good way, so we’re going to dinner tonight to celebrate, but that was my conscious choice after having the weekend to myself. I set and held my boundaries and I will enjoy my time tonight of bonding.
Next week on HOLY SHIFT!, we will be discussing ‘struggling’ (personally and/or professionally) and ways to overcome. If you’d like to be a guest on the show and want coaching on something you’re struggling with, call in at 347-637-1960.
For all of you struggling with something….and we all are…What are you willing to try to get different results? We want to know!!
Here’s to discovering your bliss!
Lesley Picchietti, CPC, ACC, ELI-MP
© Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting 2014
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