Tag Archives: treatment

Pay Attention

Pay attention….I was talking to one of my bff’s yesterday, she called me to process her most recent breakup with a man that she had been dating for a few months.  In the course of our discussion we realized that there were some ‘red flags’ early on that she dismissed as well as some on-going red flags that she didn’t give enough attention to.  IF she had paid close attention from the start she may have saved them both time and energy as she would have admitted to herself that they were not well matched.

The conversation with her warranted me doing a blog post about PAYING ATTENTION…you will ALWAYS be warned when you are around someone that isn’t good for you—whether it is a relationship or a friendship or a work association…if you are paying attention and looking at the facts in front of your face you will see the things you need to see.  Sadly, most of us look through rose-colored glasses and dismiss important information in the name of wanting to create relationship.  

It is important to keep in mind that nothing is more draining than a relationship that is toxic to you,relationships that contribute to you are life-giving,the toxic ones are energy stealers.

When evaluating someone to determine whether or not they are someone that you want in your world pay attention to a few important things:

  • Watch what they DO—actions people watch actions
  • See how they behave in public, how they treat clerks and waitstaff and other people standing in line etc
  • Listen to what they talk about—do they constantly complain, are they whiners, do they speak from a victim mentality
  • Look at their lives and what has happened to them, more importantly what KEEPS happening to them??? Do they have a long string of unwelcome events, are they always broke?  Always blaming someone else? Always having ‘bad luck’?
  • Trust but VERIFY—- verify what you are told, check facts, check story details, make sure everything adds up
  • Watch their habits—look for consistency…do they always oversleep, are they lazy, do they return calls and texts in a timely fashion, are they thoughtful, do they help, do they look to contribute or are they ‘takers’
  • Look at how they present themselves to the world…are they clean, neat or messy and disheveled — is their car clean or is it a dumpster with wheels?

All of these things will tell you a lot about someone’s character and they don’t even have to say a word. People will mostly tell you what they think you want to hear, you have to look for what is being communicated without words.

Pay attention to the ‘red flags’ you see and tailor your behavior accordingly —it will save you a lot of time and energy.

See you next week.

XO, Noelle

Teaching People How To Treat You

Teaching people how to treat you….

If you have any friends worth their salt, you have heard the phrase “you deserve better than that.” But here is my question, when it was said, did you believe it? Did you believe it on a soul level? And if you did, what did you do about it?

In my life, I have been terrible at believing I deserve the bad things that have happened. There were disturbing things that happened to me in childhood that I always felt I somehow invited. There was the high school boyfriend who cheated on me and I believed that I somehow neglected him into the action. The same boyfriend who was jealous and controlling and I thought that was somehow okay. Looking at it through eyes that are very removed from the situation, it is easy to see that people who cheat, often project. 

There were bosses who didn’t see my worth. I see now they were so concerned with their own worth, they did not know how to mold and develop their employees. There were friends who saw me as a different person than I am. I thought I deserved it because I did make some mistakes (because I’m human). There was an ex-husband who did not treat me like a woman, but rather someone to take care of him. I thought, I made the choice to marry him, and that’s that. I made my bed, and now I live in it. 

But here’s the truth; I had some responsibility in all of those things. Truly. It just wasn’t the way I saw it at the time. With that high school boyfriend, I should have refused to be treated that way. I should have told him to deal with his own feelings of guilt and stop projecting on me, or we were finished. In the workplace, I should have been more confident in my abilities and more forceful with my ideas. And if I couldn’t be in that company, I should have been willing to leave for other opportunities. With friends, it is difficult because the easiest thing to do is walk away, which is essentially what I did. But I should have let them know why and how I saw the things they were doing and saying behind my back and their attitudes toward me. Maybe then I could have ended things with cleaner conscience. 

The marriage is harder. I thought I was clear about how I wouldn’t be treated. There were several times I refused to be treated certain ways. In the beginning of our relationship, he got jealous for no reason and I told him that it was his problem and he was going to have to get it figured out, and he did. And he never threw another jealous fit again in 17 years. I stood up for myself when he told me to shut up, and he never did it again. But I don’t think I told him what I needed enough, but it is also possible he just wasn’t capable, and sometimes we have to be smart enough to know that too, and to accept that and walk away.  

But when you find the people you know you want in your life, you have to be willing to teach them what you need and what you will not put up with. You have to be willing to say, when I act like this, I need a little extra patience. You need to be able to say, I will not be spoken to like that, I don’t deserve it. But most importantly, you really have to believe that you deserve it. It boils down to you really having to believe you are WORTH it. And you are. 

Stronger Than Yesterday,

Alice

Addiction Has Changed Me

I’m not an addict but addiction has changed me.

I worked hard, as my parents did, and earned my way to my independence as a young adult. By the time I was 26, I purchased my own home, had a new car in the driveway, my bills were paid. I was gainfully employed and was well respected in my career. I did not live a life of luxury but I did not want for anything either. I had accomplished some goals in my life sooner than others and I was confident in my abilities. I was happy.

I grew up in a structured family environment, full of love and support. I was a successful adult, still, I found that I was ill prepared for some of what life had in store for me, most of which revolved around my failed relationships; more specifically, conflicts within those relationships. There was never any conflict in my childhood home – NONE. I never saw my parents fight. I only saw respect and honor and dignity.

After I married and began my own family, I would soon find out, however, that I had absolutely no idea how to deal with conflict. Furthermore, I had not the first notion about addiction and its cunning ability to destroy whatever it touched.

Addiction stole my independence in the physical form of my home, my car, my job, my financial freedom, and so much more. And it momentarily buried the strong, driven woman my parents did such a fine job creating. Addiction affected my life by kicking the door in like a thief in the night, pillaging everything sacred inside me, cheating me out of my peace of mind and my ability to trust.

One of my favorite quotes is from Maya Angelou; “I may be changed by what happens to me, but I refuse to be reduced by it.” I tell myself that everyday. Where my self-esteem had dropped drastically in my marriage, I have been able to rebuild that self-image since my separation. Though I may seem hard to some now, those that know me well, and the home from which I came, can see beyond my protective layers. I am happy again and impervious to projections. That strength and purpose in character coupled with my unconditional love is what my daughter will benefit from most.

Addiction holds no bias. It knows no boundaries. It affects all races, classes, sexes, ages, sexual preferences, religious preferences, and so on. Addiction, at its best, will destroy families, jobs, incomes, and the physical and mental health of both the addict and that of their loved ones. At its worst, addiction is fatal. At its best, it destroys.

Addiction is a very real societal issue that requires understanding, consistency, and perseverance through the face of some individuals’ worst evils. It must be recognized and treated as such with as-necessary intervention and medical supervision.

But if you ask me how to treat addiction, you have to treat its root cause. No, I’m not an addict, but addiction has changed me.

Mental health matters.
Josie