As we know, that all of us want to be treated fairly, accepted and not to be judged by others. No one ever deserves to become a recipient of unfair treatment.
However, we continue to allow it to happen to us, from time-to-time. The question is, how do we break the cycle?
We cannot escape pain entirely, but we are in control of our own destinies. We choose our behaviors that lead us to pain or pleasure. We have a choice either we can become a force for change or become a subject to it. Unless, we are under severe restriction and limitation, the choice is completely ours.
So how do we become a “force for change” in our own life? How do we turn it around from being victimized time after time to actually having a choice in what happens to us?
The answer lies within this statement: “We teach people how to treat us.”
No matter how we would like to blame someone else, it always, always starts with ourselves! If the people in our life treat us in an undesirable way, figure out what we are doing to reinforce, elicit or allow that treatment. Identify the rewards we may be giving someone in response to any negative behavior. For example, when people are aggressive, bossy or controlling — and then get their way — you have rewarded them for unacceptable behavior.
The bottom line is, if we are going to act like a doormat, we are going to be used like a doormat. However, if we act like an empowered, confident person that deserves dignity and respect, then we will be treated with dignity and respect.
Have you ever wondered why your best friend seemed to score in the great-partner department, while you’re left waiting until your Mr./Ms. Right comes along?
And why did you get the broken cookies in your lunch while your sibling got the perfect cookies?
It’s not because you aren’t good enough, or you have funny hair, or one leg is shorter than the other, and it wasn’t because you didn’t deserve to have the best either. You just never demanded the best. Instead, you pretended that getting the short end of the stick didn’t really bother you. You just stepped aside and allowed others to take the best of everything while you settled for whatever was left.
The message you sent was, “I’m not important, so do whatever you’d like to me and I’m okay with that.” Well everyone got the message and did just what you told them to do.
With patience, persistence, a positive attitude and practise, we can all raise the bar of our expectations for proper treatment from others, but it all starts with ourselves. We really do teach people how to treat us, and in understanding and accepting this truth, we are paving the road to our own peace and happiness. To live a life of love and to release ourselves from the pain of the past, first we must forgive. Forgive those who have hurt you and then realize and accept the fact that indirectly you attracted this energy. More importantly, you need to forgive yourself.
Because you are responsible, you can declare the relationship “reopened for negotiation” at any time you choose, and for as long as you choose. Even a pattern of relating that is 30 years old can be redefined. Before you reopen the negotiation, you must commit to do so, from a position of strength and power, not fear and self-doubt. The resolve to be treated with dignity and respect must be uncompromising. The worst thing you could do is make a lot of noise about changing things, only to revert to the old, familiar, destructive patterns. To talk about change and not to do it is to teach that person to treat your statements and declarations lightly. You will teach him or her to be patient, confident that you will soon give in.
Get out there and pave your road to a wonderful life by loving and caring, being kind to yourself, and most of all, expect nothing but the very best from yourself and others.
- Dr Phil