A Twist On The Golden Rule

life relationships self Mar 28, 2018

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We are all very familiar with the Golden Rule: treat people the way you want to be treated.  But what if you are someone who feels let you down by the way people are treating you?

Here’s a twist on the Golden Rule that people rarely consider:  When the people you love are not treating you the way you want to be treated, perhaps it is because you expect them to give you what you have not learned to give yourself.

When you have not learned to give yourself the love, kindness and compassion that you need, you can become easily triggered by another’s behavior.

For instance, if your Inner Critic frequently speaks to you in disparaging ways, you may become overly reactive to the smallest bit of disrespect from your teenager despite knowing that this behavior is typical of a child this age.  If your Inner Critic makes you feel like you are not valued or important enough, your spouse’s forgetfulness to check in with you during the workday may cause you to feel like he or she doesn’t love you enough.

If you are willing to examine where you are triggered in your closest relationships and acknowledge that these triggers reflect a lack of self-love, you can begin to heal yourself. This is the key to creating the relationships you desire with the people who matter the most to you.

Joanna recently experienced this during a conversation with her son.  As someone who has been actively cultivating self-love for years, she was surprised by her reaction when her teenage son said “you don’t trust me” after she questioned his commitment to his school work.  Joanna’s deepest fears were triggered, sending her Inner Critic into overdrive gathering evidence that she wasn’t doing a good enough job as a mom in instilling a foundation of trust.

Good thing Joanna is very familiar with her Inner Critic’s “You’re Not Good Enough” theme song, the broken record that has been playing on repeat for her whole life.  With this awareness, she called on these 3 tips to cultivate self-love:

  1. Just Breathe:  While breathing in and out, she repeated the mantra like “May I be kind to myself”. Research shows that repeating mantras to yourself like this one can raise your level of self-love significantly.  

  2. Learn to Listen to Yourself:  She paid attention to self-talk and asked herself, “What do I need right now?”  She listened the answer. Simply asking this question had her tune into treating herself with love and compassion.

  3. Cultivate Gratitude:  She found something to be grateful for in herself and her child, the person who was triggering her.  When you are in the midst of an Inner Critic attack, you tend to forget what you love about yourself and/or those who are triggering you.  

If you notice that you are frequently triggered by the behavior of others, especially those you love most, cultivating your experience of self-love may be worth exploring. Schedule a free Clarity Conversation with us to learn how transforming your relationship with yourself can transform your life.

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