Life is full of relationships. From family to work, you find that you have to build relationships with people whether intimate or simply casual. Relationships are important parts of your life as these people make or break you, depending on the extent of their influence in your life. So what happens when you find yourself losing sleep or feeling bitter over a certain relationship? It is time to do some careful analysis.
Earlier on in life, I had little or no friends. Growing up, we were pretty sheltered and weren’t really allowed to go out and play. However getting to the university, I had to overcome my shyness and soon I had a few friends. One of these friends of mine was a particularly nasty lady. Her comments were snide and hurtful as she specialized in silently putting you down. She hated to see people doing well. She would have something negative to say about the person in question. I started to secretly hate her but the thing was that we were still ‘friends’. When it became so difficult, I started to withdraw and soon our so called relationship was history.
If you find yourself in such a situation, you need to ask yourself certain questions:
1. Can I change the situation?
Not all difficult relationships are beyond change, even though they might be negative. If you have a close rapport with the person, you might find time to discuss the things you find worrisome about the person. However yo need to have an exit strategy. Most people like this don’t like to be challenged. So before you have that talk, think about the consequences.
2. Do I have to put up with it instead?
In situations like this, only two options remain, either put up with it or walk away. Most people who find themselves in this situation rarely do anything about it, opting to bear it with a tight smile.While adaptation isn’t bad,you need to know if you are coping in a healthy or unhealthy way. I borrowed a list for the purpose of this discussion:
Look at the following lists and honestly ask yourself how well you are putting up with your difficult person.
– I keep quiet and let them have their way. It’s not worth fighting over.
– I complain behind their backs.
– I shut down emotionally.
– I don’t say what I really mean half the time, for fear of getting into trouble or losing control.
– I subtly signal my disapproval.
– I engage in endless arguments that no one wins.
– I have symptoms of stress (headache, knots in the stomach, insomnia, depression, and anxiety) but have decided to grin and bear it.
– I know i want to get out of this situation, but I keep convincing myself that I have to stick it out.
– I indulge in fantasies of revenge.
– I assess what works best for me and avoid what doesn’t.
– I approach the difficult person as rationally as possible.
– I don’t get into emotional drama with them.
– I make sure I am respected by them. I keep my dignity.
– I can see the insecurity that lies beneath the surface of their bad behavior.
– I don’t dwell on their behavior. I don’t complain behind their backs or lose sleep.
– I keep away from anyone who can’t handle the situation, the perpetual complainers, gossips, and connivers.
– My interaction with the difficult person has no hidden agenda, like revenge. We are here for mutual benefit, not psychodrama.
– I know I can walk away whenever I have to, so I don’t feel trapped.
– I can laugh behind this person’s back. I’m not intimidated or afraid.
– I feel genuine respect and admiration for what’s good in this person.
If your are tending more towards the unhealthy, you’re just rationalizing a hopeless situation. The relationship isn’t productive for you.
3. Should I just walk away?
This is the crux of my little ramble: the walking away stage. Living with negative people will put a strain on a saint and soon enough you start to see traces of the person’s character in your daily life. Even after that, you find that you make excuses for the person and we see this everyday; from the abused wife who can’t leave her violent husband to the worker who is afraid he can’t find another job. While we are slaves to our emotion sometimes, you need to decide how much you can take.
Even as anxious as the thought of separation makes you, you need to make a decision. Carefully analysis the relationship and if you see that you are getting the shorter end of the stick, then its time to bail out.
It is the healthiest thing you can do.
Now that I have finished ranting, I can get back to work. Have an amazing day….. :* :* :*
Jessica ‘Intoxyka’ Onus….aka The Flower