I am sure that most of us know somebody we would rather avoid. You know, that one person who seems to always put your back up, or who seems intend on making your life unpleasant. All of us, at one time or another, have been the victim of slanderous gossip or snide remarks. Most of us, at some point in our lives, have experienced hurt or vindictiveness. Very often our reaction is to stay away from that person's company and to avoid interaction with him, or her, at all costs. Of course, there is nothing wrong with avoiding somebody who has treated us badly, belittled or bullied us. However, when it starts to impact on our own lives and our own freedom, it is time to re-evaluate the situation.
The one thing most of us have learned is that it is impossible to change another person's behaviour. Nothing we can do, say or explain will change who they are, what they think about us or how they behave towards us. The way they treat you and other people says everything about who they are. The way they behave is absolutely their own choice, and they have every right to decide for themselves how they want to behave. It usually has very little to do with who we are. The only thing we do have any control over is how we react to them. Yes, I may choose to avoid them, I may choose to not go to the same places where they are. I can choose to keep myself isolated from them. It is my right to do so. Yet, doing this might in the end prevent me from enjoying my own freedom, it might keep me in bondage and it might prevent me from truly soaring and enjoying life. By allowing other people's behaviour or opinion to govern your life, to control what you say, how you live or where you go, you in effect allow them to put you in a cage and to walk off with the key.
What should you do if you are being treated badly, betrayed, gossiped about or falsely accused? First of all, apply my PAUSE method.
P - Precisely determine what has happened. Get all the facts clear.
A - Assess exactly how bad it is? Is it worth making a fuss about, or is it hardly worth thinking about?
U - Understand the motive or the reason behind it.
S - Set aside your emotions. It is fine to feel upset, disappointed or hurt, but do not let your emotions run away with you.
E - Establish your boundaries. Stay true to your own moral code, but do not allow others to abuse or disrespect you.
And then, after the pause comes the WALK.
W - Wave and smile. Allow nothing to steal your peace.
A - Adjust your focus, keep it on your goal.
L - Let in go.
K - Keep negativity and toxic people out of your life.
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