This last week it has come to my attention that people are not really that great. People lie cheat and steal for no reason and then are suprised when they get caught. So the point to this statement is that you now have to change your mind set both the messages you say to yourself as well as the messages that you say to others. All these behaviors are related. When you are feeling out of control or anxious there is a great lure to have control. Some people turn that control into working, choosing when to eat and how much, when to have sex, if they are going to cheat, if they are going to tell the truth and if they are going to steal something. A friend almost got busted for that a few days ago and the reasoning behind it was that they were nervous and anxious. They needed to have something to do that gave them control and so they stole. People who lie often give me the same type of rationalization. If you find yourself in this situation, here’s the deal.
One you are not alone. Many people are pursuing the same activities and two there is hope. The first thing you have to do is find your triggers. Meaning if you notice yourself needing to do something compulsive like steal or cheat or lie or eat or even drink question where that is comming from. If you notice that you are having that feeling and everyone knows what I am talking about then mayeb you make sure you do not go into a bar. Maybe you do not allow yourself to eat or drink or have sex or even go into a store until you feel that you adequately understand those feelings have spoken about them and can pursue activities in a healthy manner.
What that means is that eating, drinking and shopping are not wrong activities. However when you begin to shop compulsively or steal or get drunk it builds in your mind as an interesting complex. You reward bad or negative feelings with bad behavior and sooner or later you will get caught and you will be humiliated. However, if instead of shopping or eating or drinking while you are feeling anxious or nervous or not good enough you call a friend. Tell the friend that you need to vent. Release to them these feelings. Tell them you cannot handle the pressure of whatever is going on and that you are tempted to do something wrong. Then keep talking to them while you avoid your crutch activity and do not hang up with them until you leave the store or bar or wherever it may be that you go to release the steam.
So now you have identified your bad behavior and you may have identified the cause behind the bad behavior, now what? Now you tell yourself simple things. You set small goals that are attainable. So lets say that you are nervous for an upcoming interview. Your small goal can simply be to show up on time to the interview. You can control that. Your next goal can be listening to the questions asked and answering those questions without going on a tangent about something else. In this way you do not become overwhelmed with the situation. Of course there are other situations like abuse which will call for some tweaking. If you are the victim, try not engaging in conversation if the abuser tries to hurt you. If you are the abuser, maybe your goal is to not come home until you can be sure that your temper is under control and doing your best to leave any situation that has potential to be abusive before the abuse happens.
Other things that you can say to yourself is that you are worth better, you can do better. You deserve to be happy and if you continue these bad behaviors you are going to end up hurting everyone you love and is it really worth it. Find a way to tell yourself that you are unique and that you have worked hard for what you have and then get through whatever life throws at you with your head held high.
I heard these four agreements the other day and would like to challenge the readers to try it for a day. First Do your best. In everything especially tasks that you do not like. Second Do not take it personally. If someone says something stupid to you, shrug it off. Other people can have their opinion and you could turn it around to say that they feel comfortable with you. Third speak with an impeccable word. Meaning don’t say anything bad about other people, places or things. Say things about them that will allow them to maintain their reputation as you would like them to maintain yours. Lastly do not make assumptions. Go into every situation hoping for the best and believing that you are well qualified for the position or that you can talk to your abuser or victim without turning violent.