Thought Provoking #12

IM-THE-QUEEN

Being a woman has its challenges. Any woman reading this will agree with me. For centuries, it’s just the way it is. We are mothers, fathers, employees, cooks, housekeepers, taxi-drivers, and many of us balance our household budgets attempting to avoid falling off our own fiscal cliffs.  We give and give until there is absolutely nothing left. There always seems to be one more thing to do.  In short, we’re tired as hell!

In 2013 I’ve made a conscious decision (not a resolution) to take some time for myself. I want to do something every single day that I can say is “just for me.”  It could be stealing 20 minutes to read a chapter in a book, or going for a walk in the neighborhood.  At this point I’d appreciate simply sitting still for 30 minutes with my eyes closed.

Steal a little time for yourself in the upcoming year.

 In 2013 – BE THE QUEEN!  Happy Holidays!

Minding Your Own Business

Being the youngest of three children has had its pros and cons throughout my life.  Yes, I was spoiled in my childhood and often heard my parents say “Leave the baby alone,” addressing my siblings.  Being the baby did afford me some privileges.  Both my brother and sister did their part to look out for me, as it should be.

As my siblings and I aged what I find is that they sometimes still look at me as that little baby sister and feel the need to inject themselves into my life with well meaning intentions and unsolicited advice.  I’ll admit my sister does it much more than my brother. She feels that she is the only one who knows what’s best for my life and has no problem letting me know.  It’s infuriating and we’ve had words because she treats me like I’m one of her children. I know I’m not the only person who deals with this.  Are any of these statements familiar to you?

“Did you do this?
“Did you do that?”
“What you need to do is…..”
“I know this might piss you off, BUT…”

 I believe this is something we’re all guilty of, whether it’s with family or friends.  I’ve certainly been guilty of it. We really must learn to stop injecting ourselves into other people’s lives were we’re not asked to be. I’ve dealt with this for many years and recently realized its time for change.  People who constantly have an opinion about something that has nothing to do with them tend to be judgmental and controlling. These very same people will reprimand you if you attempt to do the same to them.  Sound familiar?

We all know the golden rule: “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”

  • If no one asks for your advice – don’t give it.  When they do ask, give your advice in Love.  More times than not – you don’t have the entire picture.
  • If it doesn’t affect you, why get upset about?
  • Just because something works for you doesn’t mean it will work for someone else.
  • Respect other people’s space and their choices.  It’s called FREE WILL!


“A lifetime can well be spent correcting and improving one’s own faults without bothering about others.”   ~ Edward Weston ~

Whether you’re dealing with this situation with family or friends, Author Mark Matousek put this in perspective as follows:

 This paradox can be excruciating. How is it possible for an ordinary, controlling individual to care intensely about his friends and loved ones without trying to change them? How can we give our treasured advice without feeling attached to its implementation? How can we witness friends making the same terrible decisions again and again — and again — without feeling the need to castigate them? Shouldn’t influence be part of the friendship contract, a modicum of say-so to help us guide the people we love to lead happier, more worthwhile lives?

The answer is: Absolutely not. We’re not meant to have any control whatsoever over the behavior of our friends and (our adult family members.) That is because their behavior is none of our business. Our opinions about the lives of others are void of inherent importance or meaning. This is the price of loving individuals born with a measure of free will: Control is never, ever, an option. We can no more dictate friends’ actions than they call the shots for us. This is the slipperiest slope on the friendship mountain, the most demanding incline of all:

How to be hands off and hands on at the same time;
Committed but not attached;
Attentive but not invasive;
Present yet guaranteedly distant. This distance is extremely important. Friendship requires distance and closeness, just like any intimacy does, which is why knowing when to keep our mouths shut is such a virtue.

Skillful detachment proves to others that we love them for who they are rather than the person they’d be if only they were perfect and listened to us.

Trust me, the old saying is true: the only person you truly have any control over, is yourself.  Tend to the weeds in your own backyard. It takes some practice but in time it will bring us all to a place of peace.

 

Is It Time for Your GoodBye?

No one enjoys being dumped, rejected, laid off, denied, delayed or put down. Sometimes – rejection is God’s protection. People can be blinded by fantasy, abuse, guilt or procrastination and not realize because they lack the strength to move on. God has a way of closing doors to unfulfilling jobs, cutting us off from people who mean us no good and ending relationships where we lacked the integrity, self-esteem, faith or courage to mend it or end it.

Sometimes there is some good in a good-bye. There are times we are too naive or in a comfort zone and the only way we can grow is to experience the GOODBYE. – Jewel Diamond Taylor

Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the judgment that something else is more important than fear. – Ambrose Redmoon

My “intention” with this post is that I know there are many who are at crossroads/transitions in life. Relationships, jobs, friendships, family problems; heavy decisions that need to be made in order to live the life you should be living, or desperately want to live.

Be encouraged today that sometimes, there is GOOD in goodbye.

Boundaries – Check Yourself

As I grow, I find myself requiring more space. My emotional well-being has become very important to me. At home, at work, as a consumer, taxpayer, mother, mate and a friend. I’m learning that just as I have CHOICES, those choices require certain guidelines, that is, in order to remain sane, as well as remain true to who I am as a person. Those guidelines have become my boundaries in life. In other words, where I will or will not allow another person to take me. It’s another CHOICE you can make in life.

In terms of relationships I must coin the favorite Dr. Phil phrase, “We teach people how to treat us”.

We have to be more up front and let people in on how we’re feeling. We especially need to start being more honest with ourselves about what behavior we will accept from others whose lives we share. If we don’t, we’re robbing ourselves and the person or persons we interact with on a daily basis.

We spend a great deal of time and energy discussing and worrying about everyone’s business except our own. Our family, our close friends. What they are doing, and what they are not doing, and the biggest of all…what they SHOULD be doing. The coworker and her personal problems…AGAIN! The company’s lack of enthusiasm about money or procedure. Your girlfriend’s “not good enough for my girl” man. Your brother’s new wife. The neighbor’s new car. Workplace favoritism. Come on people, we all have issues.

We fail to realize that people are who they are, good or bad. All of us are at different stages and experiences. We need to honor that and let go of the control issues.

Most of our stress is self-induced because we’ve failed to set boundaries. If your friend or family member is continuing to borrow money from you and not paying it back, you really must consider not repeating that mistake again. Don’t get mad and talk about it to everyone, except them. Let them know, “I’m sorry, but I can no longer loan money to you”. Learn the lesson and move on. If you’re in a dead-end relationship, stop and ask yourself what kind of boundaries did you set for your own happiness and self worth? Boundaries are really about self worth. Typically, the more you allow someone to mistreat you, the lower your self-esteem. Women and men alike have a hard time accepting this, but it’s a core truth.

If your relationship has split and gone back more than twice, boundaries is something you might want to look at. We are constantly (especially in new relationships) teaching our mates how to treat us. We really do have a say in our romantic/personal lives. Wake up! It’s a new day. We’re not setting enough boundaries. We tip toe around the truth for various reasons, mainly out of fear. Fear of not being accepted, not being liked, and not being loved.

“If I said what I was really feeling, that person might not like me”.

So we create illusions instead. We can’t keep the illusion up for long because it turns into frustration. The next thing you know…we’ve burst. We turn into “Sybil” or “Dr. Jekyl” and our mate says we’re crazy. Sounds like a boundary issue to me, what do you think? It’s not entirely their fault…you allowed the behavior to continue.

No one can do anything to you except that which you allow them to do.

If you continue to allow people to violate your space; your boundaries, you’re robbing one person…..you! You don’t have to be rude or hostile to have boundaries. You set them, practice them consciously, and not allow people to cross them. Let go of the fear! Stop saying yes, when you want to say “hell no”!

Maya Angelou said, “When you fail to place boundaries in your life, people inject themselves into places of your life where you don’t want them, and where they have no business being”.

Are you allowing people to “inject” themselves into your life where you don’t want them?

If so, I humbly suggest that you examine the boundaries in your life.

Just People

The saying, “we’re more alike, than different” is true – because we are. At the end of the day what we all truly want is peace of mind. If there’s one thing I’ve learned from dealing with people, it’s what Queen Latifah says in this wonderful message. They’re just people.

Whether you’re a fan of this type of music or not, I posted it FOR THE LYRICS. If you choose not to listen to the song then please read the lyrics as they make a lot of sense.

And the next time you find yourself getting bent outta shape over someone or something that someone has done to you, remind yourself: They’re Just People!

LYRICS

PEOPLE by Queen Latifah (feat. Mary J. Blige)

People gonna let you down
don’t expect for them to be around
They’re just people

People gonna let you down
don’t expect for them to hold you down
They’re just people

Money problems and mood swings
Situations where certain people ah do things
Like hop on a band wagon get on a food chain
Soon as you get yo swag that’s when yo crew change

But we all equal
And people are just people
Leave it in Gods hands
Cause the devil is lethal
You get what you earn
Also you live and you learn
To expect nothin in return

Do what you do from the heart
Then move on
Cause in the eyes of the ungrateful
U can’t do wrong
That’s when the negative energy gets too strong
The sunshine leaves in comes the true storm
It sometimes makes you wanna to do harm
But you fall back cause you too calm
To get all rowdy and evil
Cause you realize at the end of the day
They just people

People gonna let you down
don’t expect for them to be around
They’re just people

People gonna let you down
don’t expect for them to hold you down
They’re just people

The bad ones discourage
The good ones motivate
The weak shall perish
The haters gon’ show they hate
long as you know what you dealing with
You can close the gate
Never let em in your world till you know they straight
Cause then again they just people
Life’s just a one stop deal it’s no sequel
Fakes one are so transparent its so sequel
Loves ones can be so humble when they need you
Some got they hands out even after you feed em
But they ain’t never no where round when you need em
It’s when your thoughts get evil
But then you realize they just people

People gonna let you down
don’t expect for them to be around
They’re just people

People gonna let you down
don’t expect for them to hold you down
They’re just people

Hey Yo – I got a lot more living to do before I leave here
I’m blessed and I’m thankful and I’m happy to be here
In good health with good wealth
Could always use help
But all you really got is your good self
Still what I go through
It hurts when people that know you
Let you down and don’t hold you
But your mistakes will teach you
Cause then you realize they just people

People gonna let you down
don’t expect for them to be around
They’re just people

People gonna let you down
don’t expect for them to hold you down
They’re just people

You betta hold yourself down