Friday, April 1

Calmness, Patience, Grace, Firmness: Overcoming Defiance.......... .................. 4/1/16

       She sat there with a sassy atti-tude. Her blonde hair in her eyes.

       Her mother con-vinced her she only had to see me for ten minutes.  After that, she could leave.

       According to her mother, it took more than two hours for this teenager to ap-ply
her makeup.  Quite an effort for someone not wanting to see me.  Minutes earlier she was in her mother's car, in my driveway, refusing to get out.

        Our time together was going to be fun.

          I worked in a psy-chiatric hospital for nine years. I raised three teen-age sons. Nothing phases me.  I looked forward to the change in the day's work routine.

          It was her third session.  Her mom wait-ed on the bench on the front porch.

         We worked on the blockages preventing her from reaching her vision.  It's hard working with someone against their will.  I let clients know their desire to get better has to be stronger than my desire to help them.

 Motivation is their responsibility.  

     We cannot push a person towards pro-gress. They have to want it.  They need to be sick of how their present life is.

         A desire to grow has to come from within.

       She had whined to her mom.  About seeing me.  An atti-tude hung over the room as we visited. That was fine.

       What she needed was com-passion.  It was essential she ex-perienced grace.  She got it.

       Working with her was easy.  All that was required was translating the needs beneath her harsh judgments.

       I don't take anything personally.  Not even death threats.  (I did not receive one from her.  But I did receive one in an anonymous letter on March 3rd.)

       We wound up our time.  Fifty minutes had passed.

      "Would it be possible to use the tools we covered this day?"
"Yes," she replied.

       I tried not registering my surprise.  Calmly, I pushed further. "How about three times this upcoming week?"

       "Yes," she said, quietly.

       Wonderful.  During the ses-sion she was respectful.  Her mother said her daughter tosses profanities at her.  Frequently.  Her mother complained about the young lady's awful temper.

        Haven't seen it yet.

       Bullies and predators can smell vulnerability through lead.  I am vulnerable only with safe people.  Without saying anything to her, this young lass knew not to be disrespectful.

       She could tell I was firmly planted.  She sensed my recovery from codependency.  She felt my strength when I would calmly look in her eyes.

Truths that were reinforced during the session: 
1.  We don't want to rely on the external facade a person gives. We may have a stronger impact than we imagine.
2.  Don't let someone else dictate our mood.  Having boundaries allows us to stand firm. Living by healthy principles prevents us from wavering.
3.  The truth is like a lion.  We don't have to defend it.  Let it loose.  It will de-fend itself.  (St. Augustine).
4.  Be gentle when speaking our truth. The reality of what we say has its own teeth.  We don't have to add oomph to it by raising our voice or staring at the person. (Not my nature, btw.)

What do I need to do? 
1.  It is important to be true to our values.  We want to continue ringing the tuning fork of truth.  It causes a sympathetic ringing within others.  Even if it isn't initially apparent.
2.  Look beyond the obvious.  People's behavior is a statement about them. Part of our emotional resiliency is not taking things personally. 

What do I need to admit? 
1.  I enjoyed my time with an angry teenager.
2.  I love the effectiveness of nonviolent communication.
3.  I was happy seeing someone use their words to say what was going on inside them. The young client said what she felt and wanted.

       The more she practices doing this, the less angry she will be.  I was happy seeing this young lady using this approach instead of acting out and swearing.


    It has been awhile since you have heard from me.  I have been here, working behind the scenes.  Every day.  Previous posts are being tweak-ed 3-4 hours a day.

    I love every minute of it.

    If you read the posts in the sidebar, you will see my recent work. The posts are revamped.  I am cobbling together a book at night. It is com-prising of the most popular posts.

    I scribe into the early hours of the next day.  I chisel away at what I've written.  Not as many interruptions, then.  When bedding down for sleep, sugar plum fairies of thought dance in my head before I conk out.  They are the result of this early morning work.

    We are lucky when we love what we do.  I enjoy good fortune.

     Thank you, for dropping by!


Anonymous said...

Dear Innkeeper,
Your post is quite inspiring. I find myself being in this situation from time to time, both as a father and teacher. Your perspective to see she needed compassion over conflict was very sweet, kind, and most importantly unconditional. It takes a person with recovery and practice to see this quickly.
Your first and second truths rang the truest for me. Something you have taught me has helped me clear up inner conflict before I can see people unconditionally and not rely on facades.
Asking myself (the wounded guy who seems to be in a triggered state) directly, if it's possible to be easy, to have more spaciousness, to see others facades for what they are, having nothing to do with me and my values and more having to do with them.
This has been so crucial with my progress. I'm learning to be more patient with my inner child waiting for the wisdom to really permit this little guy to mourn its little eyeballs out, if you know what I mean.
It's a marvel to witness your passion for the on-going writing process on your blog. I'm so happy you are writing your book!
Thank you, thank you for this post, Pablo.

Thumper said...

Dear Pablo,

Thank you for your thoughtful post. I will use what I learned from your experience with my own teen. Discovering the needs behind the behavior and feelings will help me understand and have more compassion. It can only strengthen our relationship.

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.