We don’t always fall for someone simply because their positive qualities complement our own but also because their negative traits fit ours so well. Therefore, the first thing to do when entering into a relationship (or improving one, for that matter) is to take a look at yourself and at the history of your relationships. What are the qualities that you typically look for in a partner? Are there certain negative qualities that always seem to show up and eventually drive you crazy? Do you have a pattern of choosing a person with specific traits, only to end up dissatisfied with them? Do your relationships seem to always break up for the same reasons? Once you recognize a pattern, you have something that you can work with. By figuring out how you go about ending up with the same objectionable partner in every relationship, you will know what to do to break this cycle. With each choice you make and action you take in a relationship, it’s important to have a good sense of what is operating within you that’s motivating your behavior. When it comes to love, it is advisable to not only go into it with your heart; but to go into it with your head. That way, instead of automatically selecting the same type of person for the same negative traits, you can try selecting a partner who is entirely different. For instance, if you grew up feeling invisible or ignored, you may avoid someone who shows a real interest in you. Instead, you may feel more attracted to someone who is distant or withholding of affection. You can consciously decide to be open to the possibility of being with someone who is different from the people you typically choose, for example, someone who expresses a strong attraction to you. This change will most likely cause you to feel somewhat ambivalent. However, because you have identified your pattern, you can be aware of the negative factors influencing your decision. Perhaps your disinterest in this person may be largely motivated by the very interest that he/she is showing in you. When you consciously choose to break a pattern, you can establish a better relationship with a better, albeit unfamiliar, outcome. If you hang in there, and give this out-of-the-ordinary person a chance, you can become accustomed to this out-of-the-ordinary relationship. Yours could be one of those stories of friends who fall in love or unlikely seeming couples who live happily together. From an article by Lisa Firestone http://www.huffingtonpost.com/lisa-firestone/wrong-relationship-choices_b_830989.html
Perhaps we can recognize
our way out of patterns
rather than repeating
our way out of them.
Many people confuse hard-working people with workaholics. Workaholism means that you value work over any other activity, even when it negatively affects your health and family, as well as the quality of your work. On the other hand, there are many people who put in long hours, but still give back to their loved ones and enjoy outside activities when they have free time. These people are hard workers, not workaholics. There is a very serious distinction between the two. When work becomes all-consuming and joyless – that is, you go well beyond what’s necessary and have no other interests or activities – it becomes a negative addiction. Workaholics work because they have nothing else to take its place. Their work addiction is a recurring obsession, and typically joyless. These days too many people are being labeled (or labeling themselves) “workaholics” just for putting in a few extra hours per week. The truth is that in this poor economy, many of these people are working extra hard just to keep their jobs. Real workaholics have few (if any) outside interests. They let their family lives fall apart. They often have health problems and suffer from depression and deep insecurities. Like any addiction, they repeat destructive behaviors despite knowing that they’re destructive. Many would like to stop, but find it difficult or impossible to do so. Workaholics should not be confused with people who are simply hard workers, love their jobs and go the extra mile to finish a project. By contrast, a workaholic is someone who constantly thinks about work, and without work feels anxious and depressed. Workaholics are difficult to get along with, because they frequently push others as hard as they push themselves. The evidence is clear that being a workaholic leads to serious physical problems. Don’t risk your life for your job! Seek help and learn to cope with the need to overwork. The key is to understand that sometimes an obsession with your job performance is more than normal hard work. It’s a real – and dangerous – addiction. From an article by Morley D. Glicken http://www.careercast.com/career-news/truth-about-workaholics
Workaholics aren’t heroes.
They don’t save the day,
they just use it up.
The real hero is home
because (he) she
figured out a faster way.
Obsessiveness is common in many ways – not being able to sleep at night because of hurting someone you love, for example, or developing a childhood fascination with dinosaurs that never leaves and you eventually become a paleontologist. Then there is an addiction to obsessiveness which stifles creativity. Obsessiveness is not only boring, it also lacks any faith in process. Process is always out of your control. You must be open to finding out what will happen instead of seeking a false sense of control. An example of this false sense of control would be to think: If I always know where you are, you can’t have an affair. Part of the control of obsessiveness is to nurse hurt feelings, exaggerate disappointment, and constantly blame the other for not coming to the rescue. Obsessiveness is very interesting because there are two sides to it: the positive side is creative passion that helps you know what really matters; the negative side is an addiction which makes you unable to prioritize anything. As a result, things have the same weight. Is s/he having an affair? Obsessiveness is a focus on what is NOT. Truly focus on the here and now in the moment and the obsession will change itself. Obsession is a substitute for action. Both polarities of obsessiveness are available. What is more mentally healthy, especially as we age, is sorting out what is important and what to let go of. Ultimately letting go is the final lesson of death. One of the many wonderful aspects about raising children is that elegant dance of knowing what’s important combined with the letting go work of adolescence and not knowing. The not knowing leaves room for respecting their choices as different from your own ideas of who they should be. Too many parents stifle and interrupt children’s abilities to make their own mistakes and their own choices. From “Anxiety, Control & Codependency” by Rhoda Mills Sommer, L.C.S.W. http://therapyideas.net/anxiety.htm
is like theft.
Nassim Nicholas Taleb
Life changes. You get it all lined up just the way you like it and then something beyond your control comes along and bumps you off-center. How nice it would be if you could get everything just the way you want it and say, ‘Okay, now, stay.’ But nothing stays the same. You grow up, make friends, lose friends, go to college, lose track of people, meet new ones, and sometimes you ask yourself why. But all I can tell you is the every single experience you go through like this changed you in some way. Every new person who comes into your life changes you. Every moral dilemma or emotional experience you come up against changes you. It’s your job you decide how. That’s how character is developed. From “Hollie’s Quotes”
Character is, for the most part,
simply habit become fixed.
C. H. Parkhurst
Sorrow and happiness are reversed reflections of each other. Each one pierces us deeply so the other can be more fully known. Only a man who has been sorrowful can truly appreciate being happy and likewise happiness opens one to know the true depth of sorrow. That is the way life is; always has been; always will be. I used to constantly be waiting for the “good times” to arrive thinking there was a point when life leveled out to be all happy and smooth sailing. Pure delusion! The best life any man has ever had was a great deal of happiness with lots of heartache and tragedy mixed in. In all of time, no man has ever had it better! To wish and hope and dream for more is to chase a mirage.
Often people attempt to live their lives backwards;
they try to have more things, or more money,
in order to do more of what they want,
so they will be happier.
The way it actually works is the reverse.
You must first be who you really are,
then do what you need to do,
in order to have what you want.