Tuesday, January 1, 2019
how to cope with people who criticise and undermine your new year's resolutions
Hopes, dreams, goals, New Year Resolutions, the things we want out of life - everyone has something they want, and this is the time of year we are most conditioned to think about them, and the chances are every single person who wants something in life and has voiced it has encountered someone who makes them feel really awful about their chances of success. You've had someone step on your dream right? Made you feel inadequate, whether intentionally or unintentionally?
My father has a way of wishing you luck that makes you feel like the most cursed and doomed person on the planet. Whenever I share a decision, hope, or plan with my Dad I am left shivering in my boots, wondering how he can foresee trouble in even the most mundane and non eventful life choice, certainly there have been many times I have regretted speaking to him.
For example, in preparation for (perhaps) leading a more public life (if I finish writing my novel and if I publish it) and because I sell online and don't want to put my home address any longer on the return labels of all my lovely Starzyia orders, I finally decided to get a PO Box for myself.
Last year I told my Dad, "I'm getting a PO Box" and he sounded so frightened when he said "well, I hope it works out for you" in such a way that I suddenly had visions of us huddling on the curb in the dark gazing upon the burnt out shell of our house and saying "sorry guys, I never should have got that PO Box"
That's the feeling he generates from something mundane and fully determined, in fact settled, so imagine the response to something really heartfelt and tenuous like a weight loss goal, wanting to expand my handmade business, or getting my novels published. His fear and doubt are so thinly disguised in his blessing that you want to run screaming for your pillow fort and not come out until next Christmas.
So, for everyone who has made a resolution this New Year, or has a hope, a dream, or a cause to pursue, may you find a kindred spirit who will not crush your confidence - everyone has a dream-crusher somewhere in their life, I just want to make sure you know that the confidence you had before you spoke to that person came from within you, and can be rekindled and nurtured and you can set the world on fire (just not my house)
I cope with my Dad more easily now than in the past, so I thought I'd share my top tips for coping with critics, cynics, and those who oppose your happiness or success:
1. Determine whether you need to share your hopes, dreams, and goals with this person. If their co-operation or understanding is not essential to your success and they have a history of making you feel bad about the things you want to achieve, just start your dream without them. They may or may not catch on. They may or may not support you down the line, but if the beginning of something is fragile, I try to avoid sharing it with the toxic people where I can.
2. If you do need to share your dream with a potentially negative or known toxic person, brace yourself - know their pattern of resistance or the kinds of negative comments they are capable of and if possible fortify your heart. Their opinion of you is not your opinion of you. Don't doubt yourself or let your dream or goal be poisoned by someone outside of you.
3. Rally your inner "opposition defiant" qualities and decide that you are going to prove you are more than capable of achieving what you set out to do.
4. Before you share with a known toxic or nay-saying person, tee up a positive friend or family member who will talk to you after you have talked to that negative person, make sure you the last message you hear is a positive one.
5. Separate people who mock you or challenge you for spite, from those who are accidentally hurting your feelings or doubting you out of a misguided concern - you may need to rise above them, especially if they are someone who is going to be in your life for a while longer. Remind yourself of their true intentions, and move on.
6. Remember what I said: the confidence and the passion you had for your dream before you encountered the negative influences and messages came from inside you, you are the source. Tap into your original intention and reinforce your goal by assessing how you will face any pitfalls and challenges that have been revealed in your conversations. You might be better prepared to succeed because you have addressed the kinds of obstacles - especially emotional ones or thought patterns - and knowing how to respond and cope with an external critic can really help you sort out your responses to your internal ones.
7. Practice some TLC, process what is happening, don't let it all build up until it overwhelms you and remind yourself that what you want for your life is your primary business, its not up to someone else to tell you what you should dream or try to achieve.
So far these tips have really been sanity savers for me, as well as keeping a sense of humour about negatives - a lot of the Dad comments are being saved up mentally not to hurt myself with but to have a nice laugh about how my Dad really means me to have the best life possible. He just doesn't know how to say it.
So I wish you a wonderful life. I have no fear or doubt in your ability at all. You have everything you need inside of you to make good decisions, to take positive actions, and to fulfill those goals and dreams.