Relationships are tough. Whether it is a work relationship, a friendship, or an intimate relationship with a lover, you may find that you do not always operate on the same page or even the same frequency. I used to be a horrible communicator and someone that could not control my emotions; my emotions controlled me. Until I realized that I am the one in control and I don’t have to hide my emotions, but I can be in charge of them, as well as being in charge of my own actions.
Growing up, I was the youngest, and felt constantly picked on my older siblings (3 older brothers and an older sister). I developed what some might call the “victim role”. I carried that role through my early twenties. I would often think “poor me”, “why do I always get the short end of the stick”, “I always finish last”, etc. These thoughts were very self-defeating. When someone offended me or cut me off in traffic, I skipped right past irritated and upset and immediately went into a rage mode. This was a very unhealthy way of living, with my emotions so extreme. Sometimes, I was super excited and hyper and then really sad and depressed, etc. Some psychologists try to label me bi-polar or depressed or abused or all of these things that gave them a way to deal with me and an excuse to prescribe me medicine and send me out the door. I never bought it for a moment. All I ever needed was someone to listen to what I was going through, to understand and relate, and to appreciate me for who I was, instead of trying to change me.
I have dated a lot. I have gone through some pretty unhealthy and crazy relationships where I learned a lot of bad habits from others who also had emotional tendencies to get out of hand. In my late twenties I took a year off and tried to date again, but I wasn’t ready, so I took two years off. I took the time to get to know myself and better understand why I reacted the way I did and how I could change my reactions and try to be more objective instead. I have come a long way from my early twenties and I am really proud that I can be the master of my own mind, body, and soul. Sometimes, my mind still tries to play tricks on me, telling me things like “you’re not good enough” or “no one is ever going to love you” but I remind myself that these are only my insecurities and that I am worth it.
I guess the biggest lesson I learned is that before I can have a healthy relationship with anyone else, I need to have a healthy relationship with myself. I need to treat myself with love and respect and be my own hero and protector. I can’t expect anyone else to do that for me. I want to love others because of who they are as individuals, not what they can do for me or how they can make me happy. I need to feel happy because of my own inner self, not any external factors.
Many times the reason why people are fighting is because of their own ego. We all have the innate tendency to defend our own beliefs. Our fears bring out all of our insecurities and ugly lies that we tell ourselves. We become defensive, insecure, argumentative, and judgmental. So let’s take the time to be still and find our peace and inner balance so that our egos do not get in the way of our love. Love is the opposite of fear. Love is patient, understanding, a good listener, open-minded, and peaceful. Let’s choose to love ourselves and love others…because we are worth it.