Sunday, August 17

Saying What We Want, Not Being Controlling......... 8/17/14

       An in-depth conversation with someone dear.  Five hours and fifteen minutes.  Exercising a patience I did not know I had.  Stating concerns and what I wanted, I did.  The hard part was being quiet, letting her have time to digest what I said, while I was with her.

        That is being
present.  This person is worth it, more than anyone else.  But, when with this person, I die by degrees, emotionally.  A good death.  I hate it, but it is good, just like when I took chemistry, physics, Classical Greek, Latin, calculus and basket weaving in school.  (I'm kidding about the basket weaving.)

        I had a ten point outline prepared for our visit.  No, I am not crazy.  In outlines, I think, when speaking, writing, or doing anything---including planning my day.  It keeps a mind bursting with a million thoughts, orderly.  It prevents the tyranny of the urgent but not important from overruling the important, but not urgent.  It provides the mental harmony and peace of mind needed to truly celebrate life.

        Today, I expressed my feelings. I also got what I wanted.  Most people are willing to settle for less than what they want.  Not me.  Many people fear rejection, or the anger of another, thus  hesitant in asserting their desires.  Not me.  The big question for most people is, what do we want?  I know that answer.  I am conscious of my wants----what fulfills me.

       Today, I wanted honesty, authenticity, intimacy and joy.  I received each in full measure, and then some.  I didn't think I would.  I did not plan that I would.  When present, we do NOT manipulate outcomes.  That is being controlling, usually due to fear.  I don't fear life.  I thrive on the waves and currents of life, whether it be ebbing or flowing.

       When relating, we discover, seeking the outcome.  This requires being relaxed, comfortable in our own skin and resiliency.  As possible as it is for a man to swim with lead boots, is it to be resourceful, when gripped with insecurity, or self-loathing.  We aren't present when preoccupied with fear or the need to please---when we are codependent.

       When gripped with this placating disease---wanting the approval of others---the bells, whistles and smoke of our insecurities prevent us from perceiving our reality clearly. (For me, today's visit.)  We interpret what is happening from the scarred, Hunchback of Notre Dame of our wounded soul, not from our personal strength or confidence.  Healthy principles do  not inform us, then.

      The key is openness to emotionally healthy principles---not manipulating.  Being controlling does not meet our needs, at least successfully, or in an enriching way.  Even if we achieve our goals, while being our crass selves, we have cheapened whatever is received.  Good fruit does not come from the bad tree of manipulation.

       When we attempt to control others, we decrease the likelihood the other individual will maintain goodwill.  Having been duped, is also less likely they will want to cooperate in the future---if they have self-esteem.  Most people don't, unfortunately.  The response of many is yielding to abusive predators, pushy others.  Predators smell victims through lead.  This is where to say what we feel, and let the predator know what we will do if they violate us.  Abusive people know to leave me alone, even though my voice is soft voice and I have a  friendly disposition.

       In today's conversation, I made did not explain or justify my wants.  No need to.  We do that when attempting to control an outcome.  When I asked a question, I did not answer it for her.  There was no anxiety about not getting the answer I wanted.  I simply desired her answer, whatever it was.

       When I made my requests, there was neither anxiety nor fear.  I did not worry about what could happen.  Usually worries have no basis in fact.  Threats were not used.  Not my style.  (You know me better than that.) Threats are a form of control.  We are not expressing what we really want. We are also not not vulnerable, present, conscious or aware.

       Present, conscious and aware people look for similarly spirited individuals.  If that is the type of people I want to have as part of my supportive circle, I need to be that.  And was---today---as I am, usually.

        What else did I want during today's visit?  How about this: I wanted our conversation uncensored, going wherever it meandered.  She explained areas that previously confused and hurt me. Not now.  With the clarity she provided, I understood where we stood.  We laughed, were vulnerable and delighted in one another's presence.  Can't beat that.

        And I am one lucky guy. I also believe we create our own luck.  The harder we work, the luckier we get.  I have worked intensely---4-8 hours, daily, the first 4 years, [getting up for at 4:00 a.m., for  four hours study each morning, before work] three hours daily now--on my recovery, for over ten years.  We reap what we are willing to sow.

My Gratitudes:
1.  I love life, happy about the freedom I have because I am honest in my relationships with others. I enjoy living with integrity, presence and transparency, free to be my true self.
2.  I am thankful for knowing how to be honest with another while still being considerate and gentle towards that person.   I like the bond I have with others, a result of the honest relating we share.
3. I love the relationships I have.  They are devoid of manipulation. None are narcissists. My friends are not manipulators. Not one. (We get what we tolerate.)
4.  I am glad I am not passive, nor tortured by doubt.  I am thankful for the confidence I have because I live by Al-Anon Family Group recovery principles.
5.  I love freedom from artifice, that I have friends where we share emotional safety, intimacy, love and reciprocity.
6.  I am grateful for being able to serve others through the work I do. 


Thumper said...

Thank you once again for your valuable insight and your personal example of how to live an authentic life. I admire that you are able to say what you want without trying to control the other person or the outcome.

Pablo said...

Applying nonviolent communication helps when we are frustrated,angry or upset with others. Being present is critical, too.

I am thankful when you drop by. Your encouragement means a lot to me. Wishing you a terrific new week!

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing your thoughts. I need to learn to express my feelings too because I usually am willing to settle for less.

Jane G. Yorkshire

Pablo said...

Dear Jane,

I am catching up on comments written here.

You will find growing dignity when you express your wants and feelings,not accepting unacceptable behavior from others.

We are the only person on earth who can make our welfare our number one priority. If we don't, no one else will.

I enjoy your visits. Hope to see you again, soon!

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.