Saturday, March 29, 2014

Big Cove Podcast number 9: Attachment Styles and how they Influence our Relationships - Part 2

This is an episode of the Big Cove Podcast. It is a community experiment in providing information on emotional health topics directly to members of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, and it usually lives at my other blog site at IndianCountryEmotionalHealth.com.

Our infant experiences with our parents, influence the way we see the world and our relationships. The attachment style we develop, based on our early interactions, becomes the basis for all of our future expectations.

This podcast is about 16 minutes long. Click the start arrow twice if it doesn't start on the first click. Enjoy!

Rich

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Bewildered by the pile of stuff to do?

This post might be as much for me as for you. Good to be reminded of the basic process for getting things done.

We have all had competing priorities. And what happens when we try to deal with all of them at the same time? Very often, without focus, we get little done.

Set aside enough time to complete the tasks at hand. List them in order of importance. Any you can leave off for a later time is good too.

What to do next?

Instead of throwing yourself headlong into the pile of tasks, recognize that you are wanting to react quickly.

Slow yourself. Deep breaths, exercise/ walk, meditate, and come back to the question a little later.

Recognize what is truly important based on your values versus what is just your preference due to fear or doubt. This is the desire to avoid or escape. It can look much alike. This takes practice and you might never be finished with the effort. The benefit is that you can make a process for yourself that helps you stay on track when the path grows dim or the stress level gets high.

Look at the stack again from this perspective and re-evaluate the priority list. Start at the top and keep going.

Juggling chainsaws is no way to live. If you have a life where you have to decide which fire to put out next, you need to fix it. Maybe that means you re-sequence your priorities. It might also mean you have to let some things go.

The key is simply that you don’t quit. That is the secret to success. You learn and you try again.

Go and live well. Rich

Monday, March 10, 2014

Not everyone will understand

If you are reading this, then you're likely one of us. One of us who wants to learn more, to understand how things work, so that you can live better yourself.

I had a conversation with a friend this past weekend who told me about an acquaintance that had a different approach to having such discussions.

My friend had decided to open up, and try to gain some perspective on a problem only to find his friend was not interested in discussing details, but rather thought it best to identify options to be chosen.

His answer was something like, “you can do this or you can do that, and that's about it”. This frustrated my friend who felt the need to talk about his situation in detail, rather than just to have options presented to him. Was he being understood? Was he being taken seriously?

This does point out that many of us need to talk in order to process our concerns, and by that I mean to see issues, understand them, and identify the options available for action. It is a process of understanding ourselves.

But we have to recognize that not everyone does it that way. Their approach may be very different.

Very often these people are the ones we would normally expect to have our best interest in mind. They might be the people we automatically go to, to seek comfort and acceptance, like our parents, siblings, or other members of the family, or even your best friend. Just because they are “closer” to us doesn't mean they are the best candidates for support.

If you find these conversations frustrating because they focus on telling you what to do, then keep looking for a confidante that is willing to discuss issues with you before arriving at conclusions. The process of telling our story is very important to many of us.

I think of this mismatch as being similar to someone asking you for the punchline to a joke before you've told the it or someone wanting the final scene of a lengthy story. The story you have to tell is as important as the conclusion. Make sure you find someone that you can tell your story to who is going to be respectful of it and who is going to support you after hearing of it.

Don't get me wrong, the conclusions you come to, and the actions you want to take, are hugely important . You have to take action in order to make changes that are going to help you live better.

But some people prefer to skip the details and jump to the end, to see the steps they need to take. They will use this approach with your concerns too, in their attempt to be helpful. You might choose to talk to them only when you need that specific clarity. And choose others when you need emotional support.

I would also tell you to focus on the solutions, after, I have heard your story. Not moving beyond the past is a sure way to limit our happiness in the present. But for many of us, our story is who we are. It must be told to someone who will respect it.

Don't stop trying to find such a person or people, that you can share your personal story with, and don't get terribly discouraged that not everyone fits that need, especially when we really hoped that they would.

I’m looking at starting a forum here that would serve that purpose too. Let me know if you think that would be helpful to you via email or comment.

Thanks for reading. Go out and live well.

Rich