Is it love or is it just comfortable?

Everyone, whether they have come from dysfunction or not choose their mate based on what they know.  They choose a mate based on what they saw growing up, what is comfortable to them.  When we come from dysfunction we do not always have a very good way of picking our mate.  We often times choose people who manifest the same characteristics that of family of origin.  We have no guidelines for picking someone who will actually love us unconditionally.  We were never taught, neither were they.  We  were shown how to manipulate, control, coerce but not love.  So, we choose what we know because it is uncomfortable and it does not make us uneasy.  It is not good for us, does not make us happy but it is familiar and we migrate toward it because we know it, we know how to respond to it, we know what to expect from it.  We do this and we may not even know that we have until it is too late.  Until we are in a committed relationship, have children and have complicated our lives.

Learning to choose differently means that you have to look at all of those things that are causing pain in your life and replacing them with something new.  The new behavior may be uncomfortable at first, it will take 3 weeks to change the behaviors by constantly, consciously not doing the old behavior and replacing it with the new one.  The new one will them be comfortable.  It will take another 3 weeks of practicing that new behavior to make it a habit.  Something that you will do without thinking about ans not fall back on old behaviors during time of stress.  Changing behaviors is stressful, these videos will help you to relax while you are making changes.  Link to relaxation / guided imagery   Enjoy!








Betrayal is something that is very difficult to overcome because it destroys trust in the person or people who have betrayed you.  It seems to be a pattern in some people’s lives however, and this stops them from having relationships on a deeper level. The fear of being betrayed again can stop us from ever having anything more than superficial relationships.  They can be friendly even humorous but superficial because the person who has been betrayed will not let you in too deeply for fear that you will betray them too.   There will always be a wall between you, to protect them from you. Betrayal is painful, you were hurt by someone you trusted enough to let get close to you, know your secrets, things you never told anyone else.  Betrayal is unexpected and usually shocks the person who was betrayed because they were not on guard around this person, they didn’t think they had to have their defenses up around this person.

Healing the person means rebuilding the ability to trust people and dealing with the original betrayal.  You will need to examine what happened again and what went wrong.  You will also have to learn to separate this person from the rest of the world.  Not everyone is going to betray you.  Hanging on to this, is only holding you back from finding a relationship with someone you can trust and will not betray you.  You will need to take baby steps toward confiding in someone again.  Confide something small at first and if you feel that nothing bad has happened with the information or they haven’t gone screaming from the building with whatever you told them, you can try something more serious.  Eventually you will be confiding things that you have never told anyone or things you haven’t told anyone for a while.  This is not going to happen over night.  Everything I write about takes time, there is no instant cure or pill, just hard work, emotional work.

Most of the rebuilding will be around trusting yourself and your judgment again.  Most people who have been betrayed are angry at themselves for not seeing it ahead of time, not knowing this person better, not paying attention to the subtle cues that were happening or just plain not thinking you were smart enough to figure it out before hand.  None of those things are correct.  People who betray you do it all of the time to others.  It is their thing, not yours.  Forgiving yourself is important to your healing.  You would not have seen anything anyway until it would have been too late to do anything about it.  People who betray others are good at doing it and would not have given off too many cues about what they were doing, only ones you would have seen in hindsight.   Forgive yourself for not seeing it before you were hurt.  You did not deserve it, be grateful that your mind does not work like theirs, it is a lonely place to be.  These video’s will help you to relax and get rid of those thing you have no control over.   Link for the video’s.    Enjoy!

Finding root causes

Often times as a Behavior Specialist Consultant and in my personal life, I have been accused of making excuses for people’s behavior.  In my mind there is a huge difference between making excuses and finding root causes. Making excuses entails coming up with things that cause this person to do what they did and then letting them off the hook for whatever it might have been.  Finding root causes entails looking underneath the surface behavior to find what is driving the behavior.  This is done in order to change the underlying causal factors and therefore the behavior itself.  This does not let the person off the hook but makes them do work to change what was done so it will not happen again.  It not only changed the surface behavior, what you can see with the eye, but also what is driving the behavior.  An example might be the following:  When dealing with a child who has been molested you will see surface behaviors like hyper sexuality or the opposite dressing very plainly, fading into the woodwork to not be noticed or to not be attractive.  You will see criminal behavior, drug and / or alcohol use and eventually abuse.  You will see anger and a lot of it.  There will be poor school performance, especially if it is a teacher that is doing the molesting.  You will see cutting themselves, emotional dis-regulation, reactions to things that are not that bad will have an overreaction.  They will not be able to hold a job when they get older due to the anger.  They will have excuses for their responses to things that do not make sense to a normal person but it does to them and they will be angry with you if you dispute it.  Fixing only the surface behaviors will not change the behavior.  They may stop doing whatever you have punished them for, but the driving force behind the behavior has not changed and therefore it will continue to happen.  If you punish a child for dressing provocatively,they may not dress that way again in your presence, but they will find another way to express that behavior.  They may begin to sneak out of the house, dress provocatively when they are out of your sight, etc.  Because you have not found the underlying causal factor, the behavior continues.  It takes a lot of work to change causal factors.  Sometimes years and determination to make it different by the person exhibiting the behavior.  Making them feel bad about what they are doing will only make it worse.  It will make them defensive and pull away from you.  That does not mean you accept their behavior,  it means you let them know you will love them without strings.  Most of us have no idea how to do that.  Loving without conditions attached means that you are willing to love this person no matter what they do, no criticism, just acceptance of who they are and where they are at this point in their life.  That does not mean you accept their behavior.   You are also willing to tell them, without judgment, how it hurts you to see them do whatever it was they did and cause themselves such pain.  If you are only interested in what other people see then you are making excuses.  If you are trying to understand what is making it happen then you are looking for root causes and trying for a permanent change.  These video’s will help you to relax while you are giving away what you cannot control and is no longer working for you.  Link to the video’s.   Enjoy!

Emotions and expectations

When I was younger I had expectations, sometimes huge expectations of people. I would then become angry because those people did not meet my expectations.  It wouldn’t matter whether or not they were unrealistic.  I was still angry that these people disappointed me and fell short of what I thought should happen.  Having unrealistic expectations comes from immaturity and dysfunction, someone has not taught us realistic expectations and has allowed us to think that what we want is what we should expect without making allowances for human error and limitations.  I learned that putting my expectations on others without finding out if they were realistic was a fool’s errand.  I had no right to do so.  That is not to say that all of us have a right to some expectations, reasonable ones like;  when a repair man or the cable guy says they will come between 2 and 5 PM, it is reasonable to think they will do that, when your spouse/friend says they will do something for you, it is reasonable for you to expect that they will.   It is also reasonable to become irritated/angry because they did not.  Chances are you took off work to meet the repairman or cable guy and have now lost work with nothing to show for it, and they have probable asked you to meet them again another day, which means more lost work time.  If this is not the first time your spouse or friend has said they will do something and then did not, it is also reasonable to become irritated or angry.  It is also reasonable to lose trust in those people who repeatedly do not keep their word or promise.

Emotion’s are not good or bad.  They are there to help us understand that something just happened to us.  Irritations or anger means someone just hurt us, stepped on our toes, so to speak.  It is up to us to understand why that happened.  What part of the situation did we contribute to the event?  Was there an unrealistic expectation?  Are we angry because it is easier to admit anger then hurt?  Under a lot of anger is hurt feelings, because it is more acceptable in our society to say I’m angry then it is to say, you just hurt my feelings. Hurt feelings makes us appear weak, anger makes us look strong.  Not owning hurt feelings, hurts us.  We then have a tendency to place those feelings in the sack I talked about before.  We have no right to release our anger on someone, we do have a right to vent it in a mature fashion like going for a walk, run, listening to music, reading a book, etc and then going back to that person and calmly telling then what angered you. You also have no right to expect that they will care or do anything to change whatever ever it is that caused you anger. the world does not revolve around making you happy, we should be doing that for ourselves.  Depending upon that persons response, we should then be making a decisions whether or not we can trust that person again with whatever it was that caused our anger.

There is a lot of talk about guilt being a bad emotion.  There are no bad emotions. Emotions are designed to tell us something about our state of being, we should be paying attention to what that might be at the time.  Guilt tells us we just stepped on someone elses toes.  We need to make amends, apologize, fix whatever it is that we did. That doesn’t mean we have to spend the rest of our lives doing so.  When we have made ammends the guilt should subside, if it does not, we should be looking at why we are still carrying it around in our sack and then address that issue.

Hate seems to be an emotion that a lot of people use to describe what they do not like.  Hate is a strong emotion, indicating that we have loved someone or something a great deal.  In order to hate, you have had to love deeply.  Hate is not the opposite of love, but the underside of love, the dark side of love.  Apathy is the opposite of love.  Apathy is the opposite of any emotion.  Apathy is the lack of feeling anything, a lack of caring one way or the other.  If you carry hate around it will do the same thing that anger does, eat at you and make you bitter.  The only person that is hurt by your hatred is you.  The other person probable does not care and is apathetic about your feelings concerning them.

We tend to place blame on others in this country.  For whatever the reason we have difficulty taking responsibility for what we do, think, say and feel.  Taking responsibility for what we do, think, say and feel is healthy and mature.  Taking responsibility at times does not mean you are taking responsibility for everything.  Only for your part in it. That does not mean other people will not try to make you responsable for all of it, you do not have to take that on.  If it is not yours, do not accept it as yours and say so.  It is a freeing experience.  It takes courage to take responsibility for yourself and your actions or inactions.  It take courage to make decisions about whether or not you will accept people for who and what they are at the time, because people change.  Each of us have to figure out what is acceptable to us and what is not, who we want in our lives and who we cannot tolerate.

To end I will say that if we are instantly angered, afraid or any other emotion, it has more to do with what just got triggered within us from our past then what just happened in the present moment.  Taking time to figure out what that was/is, is also freeing.  It is also the responsible, mature thing to do.  When theses instant emotions happen, you need to take the time to find out what got triggered.  You can do that by allowing yourself to feel the emotion and the origin of it will come.  Most of the time it is from childhood and it is a childs emotion.  The adult that you are now needs to nurture that child and tell them it will be alright, there is no danger now, you can handle whatever comes.  Not addressing it allows it a chance to come up again and again in your life, until you deal with whatever it is.  These video’s will help you relax and give away what you cannot control or is getting in the way of healing.  Link to the video’s.    Enjoy!