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Relationships and the Speed Bumps in Life

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Life can be a joyful ride.  It has many ups and downs.  There seems to be a couple of universal speed bumps.  They are money and relationships.  Two important things that have huge effect on our perception of our ride through life.  In relationships, a tough concept for some is that we teach people how to treat us.  Some of you are saying, “right on, sister, I believe that!”  Some of you are saying, “that can’t possible be true!”

Let me give you an example.  We teach people how to treat us by what we are willing to accept from them.  You have probably heard the old saying, “he/she was born with a silver spoon in their mouth”.  Mine was a different upbringing.  I was born with a “guilt spoon in my mouth.”

Guilt is a very powerful manipulation tool.  It is very effective way to get what you want.  It is, also, a very under handed tool that scars both the user and the recipient.  When I learned that I am responsible for my own life, I believed it.  I didn’t bat an eye at the concept that I create all the things I wasn’t happy with in my life.  What was more difficult, for me, was taking credit for the good things.

Being raised with the idea that everything that happened bad in our household was my fault led to my feelings of inadequacy, depression, and of course that familiar feeling, guilt.  This led to my feelings of being a door mat.  That is what I was projecting and I attracted strong personalities that used guilt techniques to interact and control me.  As long as I accepted guilt, people used it.

We teach people how to treat us by what we project. When I was in my twenties, I started taking horse back riding lessons.  I had always wanted to learn to ride.  In my lessons, I always wanted to ride “Snickers”, a buckskin, who was easy to ride.  She always did what I wanted and my riding experience was fun.  My instructor always made me ride Casper.  He was a white horse with mind of his own.  When I had a lesson riding him, I had to work. I came to realize that when I projected confidence and made him do what I wanted, my riding lesson became more fun and I learned more.  I grew to enjoy the challenge he presented.  I realized that life and relationships, we attract the situations and the people that put us out of our comfort zone to learn from it.

When a relationship is a challenge for me, I ask myself, what am I projecting?  What am I accepting from that person that is making the relationship less fulfilling? Why am I attracting that? What do I need to learn from this particular relationships.  The biggest question I ask myself, is this relationship worth working through the challenges?

As I have grown older and wiser, I have grown more comfortable with what I will accept and what I project.  My relationships with others is much more fulfilling, with less drama.  I feel peace regarding how I teach others to treat me.

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