Accepting Unacceptable Behaviors
A traumatic life changing event, such as divorce, is a time to reflect, start over, and refocus your attitude on positive behaviors and find the strength to call out those that are not.
As a child, I learned to ignore the negative behaviors of others from an alcoholic father. It was easier the following morning to ignore the events of the previous night’s outbursts. Moving on as though nothing had happened removed the embarrassment or anger of an apology and returned a false calm to the house. This avoidance of confrontation continues to haunt me today and has major consequences through all areas of my life. Here are some.
Relationships – Fight or Flight – I have always kind of sucked at deep relationships… (apologies to all those past and present involved… :-0). When the “going gets tough (in a relationship), the tough get going (out of the door).” My avoidance of confrontation, even as a teen, meant many hearts were broken, via a buddy being sent to inform that it was over (my 80’s version of a text).
Marriage – Fake Sense of Harmony – When two are not one, which is a lot of time on decisions from major parenting judgments from new sneaker investments to what’s for dinner, conflict will arise. Someone has to take the initiative because switching off, I learned, is a poor communication skill. I got an “A” but turned dinner into Mid-East peace talks. The key is this: Not making a decision, is making a decision. Not facing up to small or large issues in your marriage or relationships sends the message that you simply don’t care.
Parenting – Accepting sarcasm as a form of communication is like allowing your teen to pull the pin while you play hot potato – Let’s face it. Getting kids out of bed in the morning sucks. Kids and especially teens are not at their most social at 6 am. As mine now range in age from 17 to 24, I have lived and survived a full spectrum of emotions. I also learned that calm and quiet went a lot further on moving them out of bed than harsh words and veiled threats of grounding. These cards can only be played so many times, and the school year is loooong….. However, boundaries of respect are very important. Once across it is twice as hard to reinforce. Be fair, calm, patient, and consistent and remember that these things too shall pass. And they will move out.
Work Place – Never ignore the office bully – Every office has one. That person that speaks over others and behind others when they are not there. Never play down to their level. Stand up and speak up in a fair and honest way. Defend those that are not there, but never to provoke an argument–only to state the facts. In the end of the day, you will never go home regretful of having done the right thing.
With “Self” – Hold yourself accountable to a higher standard – Why would you accept anything less than your best? If you have failed, know you are going to fail again. That should never stop you from trying to do your best. We all have had that little voice whispering in our ear, that we failed again or should quit. Why listen? Accepting is the failure. To try is to succeed.
No animals or individuals were meant to be harmed in the writing of this post. It was really a call to action for “self” and others that want to be motivated or continue to be motivated to better themselves each day to become the best person, parent, or partner. Draw your line in the sand to accept only acceptable behaviors.
Hopefully Behaving Acceptably,
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