Thursday, May 16

Character Discernment: Rescued From a Narcissist.............. 5/16/13

"Money will buy a fine dog, but only love will make
 him wag his tail ." Image byTim blessed. "Country-
side:Sunlit Canal Path"Copyrighted photo.
     Our char-acter discern-ment, or, my Pablo Piper People Picker----feel free to insert your name----is key for healthy relationships.  For the longest time, I didn't have one.  Drama, depression, people letting me down, being used and abused was my
normalcy.  

     Yes, that's how it once was for me, in my twenties and thirties.  

I made hurtful decisions that hampered me from the emotional safety, harmony, order, and reciprocity I needed.  I wouldn't know a healthy relationship if it came up and pinched me.  I had no boundaries, clues as to my "must haves" and "can't stands."  Am I glad, that's not true, now. 

      I'm thankful for the lessons I've learned about boundaries, responding, not reacting, and especially this truth: 
I'm thrilled I saw her for who she was, within three weeks. I didn't need to be too smart to notice her self-centeredness.  In one of her e-mails she boasted about men fawning over her.  
      My gratitudes are highlighted in purple. 

      I'm thankful for intuition. While getting to know someone, the caution flag of discernment prodded my consciousness.  In younger years, the voices of these qualities were ignored.

  During the past two months, I'm glad I applied them while getting acquainted with this person. 

     I'm indebted to caution and patience. They helped in avoiding an unhealthy relationship.  I'm thankful I respected the part of me---the limbic system---that senses fear and danger.  I did not allow my cognitive self to overrule common sense. 
I yielded to my more basic, less rational self as it screamed its warnings. 

    This person---"Barbara"---is a kick.  Looking at encounters with her with a sense of humor helps.  It's one way of  lovingly detaching from my foibles
     
       Today, Barbara tried using charm when I saw her.  She was ingratiating, praising me in front of others. 
"Faithful are the wounds [or loving corrections] of a friend; but the kisses of the enemy are deceitful."                         Proverbs 27:6
I prefer authenticity to flattery.  A week earlier, a friend informed me she had gossiped about things I confided with her.

     I am leary of charm.  Today, listening to Barbara raised the antennae of caution and my skin crawled.  Fingernails screeched on the chalkboard of caution. 

     On the other hand, I was happy hearing her comments.  It revealed my people picker is improving.  I focus on character, not honey-toned words. 

      It is empowering taking responsibility for my thoughts, words, emotions and actions. It feelsgood,beingawareoflong-standing buttons of mine that others once pushed with success.  Now,  I don't get triggered as frequently.  All this is the result of applying boundaries. 

     I used to think I was critical, or unkind if I kept my distance with others, when they crossed my boundaries.  In reality, my response reveals I'm getting characterologic-ally stronger.  No longer accepting narcissists or unacceptable behavior is providing me with the serenity and emotional safety and ease I always sought, but could not have without adhering to my values. 

     I require equality, reciprocity and mutuality, where my needs and feelings are considered, also, not just that of others.  When relating with a narcissist---they are unable to offer provide these important needs because they lack empathy----life is all about them and their wants. 

     My gratitudes for today are a result of personal growth.  Passivity towards unacceptable behavior has been replaced by a healthier priorities.  Having better relationships, ones that don't exploit me, allow me to have an attitude of gratitude. 

            A happy innkeeper, made so because of growth 
          in the areas of discernment and boundaries
Related Posts: 
Character Discernment
Must Haves and Can't Stands, Needed for Healthy Relationships

2 comments:

Carl H said...

Dear Innkeeper,

On this hazy, cool, sleepy, Saturday morning, I am grateful...

1. I could meet my friend and mentor last Wednesday to cycle 6.6 miles - mini-bragging rights...(putting the new knee through its paces), break bread (waffles...) explore antidotes to fear-triggers; how to identify and overcome, and gather with friends by the backyard, garden cottage fireplace, on an island in the bay, to share our experience, strength and hope.

2. That I could conclude the regular work-week with satisfaction, and enjoy at home with my wife a well-acted and deeply thoughtful film called "The Words!" Highly recommend it to all!

3. That I could proactively go in to work early this morning, on my day off, for a couple of hours. That I could put out potential fires early before they turn into the proverbial out-of-control firestorm that can haunt one the rest of the day/weekend. Free and clear until Monday, I don't need to "look over my shoulder...to my cell-phone-panic-system!

4. That I can see my mom again today, bring a bit of joy into her sedentary life, and collect her groceries for the week.

5. That I can live in a (presently) quiet, peaceful home where one can think to write on a Saturday morning, serenaded by our backyard bird chirping.

Pablo said...

Dear Carl,

Thank you, for your consistent contribution, adding gratitudes to this place of thanks in cyberspace.

How have you been? I'm sorry for taking a long time to reply. What did you like best about the film? What need of yours was met?

I wish you a special time with your mother when you see her this upcoming Saturday. (I know your routine.)

Quotes from the Posts

"I'm mindful that our thoughts affect the words we use, our words influence our actions, our actions shape our character and our character determines our destiny."

From "My Character Determines My Destiny." To read it, please click here.

"Progress not perfection, is better than no progress at all, especially when we're trying to rid ourselves from unwelcome dragons that dwell within the closets of our soul."

From, "Still Learning" which, within four days, became the most popular post
written. To read it, please click here.

"Worry does not empty tomorrow of its trouble, but it does empty today of its strength"
From the post: "Life Is Not a Correspondence Program." Click here to read it.

"Even though we cannot control our circumstances, we can control how we choose to respond to them."

From, "Handling Stress and Dealing With an Emotional Bully."Click here to read this post.

"Nope, being busy isn't exciting. Boring is good. Because boring is not boring; boring is being healthy, living a balanced life that has serenity"

From: "Do You Know What It Means If You Are Too Busy?" For more, please click here.

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