Conflict


What Are You Thinking?

What Are You Thinking?


Posted By on Mar 3, 2014

It isn’t what happens to us that makes us feel a certain way, it is what we think about what happened that determines how we feel.  We all have a belief about things and we interpret everything that happens to us through our brief systems.  If we believe we are unworthy of love, then no matter how much someone loves us we will interpret their actions as unloving.  We will sabotage our relationships. If we want to change our beliefs about our world, then we have to challenge those beliefs and ask ourselves “Are the beliefs that we have rational or irrational beliefs”?  If we are depressed and do not want to take an antidepressant, because we do not want to take medications even if it helps us feel better, it is important to identify the real beliefs about taking the medication. If the belief is “We do not want a substance to control how we feel, because we will become dependent on it”, Is that a rational belief? Do we take vitamins?  If we are diabetic and need insulin, don’t we take that?  It all helps us feel better and live longer, hopefully. Why is taking an antidepressant different?  We are lacking something in our brain that is stopping us from thinking rationally and we feel bad. Antidepressants help balance the chemicals in our brain so we can see our world more objectively and realistically. It gives us hope that we can work through difficult things. Research shows that if we are depressed we do not live as long. Being depressed affects our health. So what is our real belief about taking the antidepressant?  Maybe it is because we do not believe we deserve to be happy or we do not want to give up control.  Something inside of our brain is telling us an irrational thought that we should not enjoy life.  Antidepressants alone do not help us feel less depressed.  It is important to examine our thoughts and change our beliefs about our true identity and give ourselves permission to be happy. As we change our core beliefs about ourselves and learn to love ourselves that will help us feel better. Being able to connect with others builds confidence and can help our depression, and sometimes we need help to think more clearly and give ourselves permission to reach out and trust people close to us. If our belief is that we do not deserve to be loved and be significant, then whenever we have those feelings we are going to feel guilty about being happy.  We will quickly sabotage anything good that is happening to...

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The Shame of Emotional Abuse


Posted By on Jan 23, 2014

Emotional abuse is often unintended but it is real and often more damaging than physical abuse. It brings powerlessness, fear, hurt and anger and comes couched as guidance, teaching and advice though its outcomes are belittling, erosion of self-confidence, esteem and value.

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Holidays Can Be Difficult

Holidays Can Be Difficult


Posted By on Dec 1, 2013

For some people holidays can be difficult. It can be a reminder that things are not perfect in our lives, especially when it may seem like everyone else is having such a wonderful time this time of year. Some people go to the extreme of putting up lights everywhere and it seems like neighbors compete on who can display the most magnificent scene.  Everyone is out of touch with how much we are hurting and things like lights become so trivial when we are lonely and estranged from our family. When we are hurting it is easy to isolate ourselves and stay away from others, but that is not a healthy way to handle the situation.  It is important to focus on giving and volunteering wherever we can.  You are not the only one that is hurting and we can always look around and see someone who has less than we do. The Rescue Mission in town served over 500 people for Thanksgiving dinner this year.  They chose to be with other people and it looked like everyone was blessed by the meals and all the volunteers that helped to make it a great event. It didn’t matter if you were on the receiving or giving part of the dinner, everyone was encouraged. Life is good sometimes and sometimes it is bad, but the secret to remember is hard times will pass if we keep on keeping on when it is tough.  Tough times build character and endurance and emotional maturity that we can not achieve any other way.  It makes us tough, but tender and humble. I remember 39 years ago when my first husband left me six months pregnant for another woman.  I hurt so bad I did not know how I was going to make it through another day, but I did.  My son was born 15 days before Christmas and he was such a precious gift.  I didn’t feel much like celebrating Christmas that year, but it got easier and easier as time went by. That experience helped me mature and grow in a way that nothing else could have accomplished. It made me tough, but also humbled me to know that I did not have control of the events in my life, but I did control how I handled them.  They can make us bitter or better. If you are hurting this time of year, reach out and touch someone else’s life.  It will get your mind off of your own pain and encourage someone who may be hurting also. It can help you heal, even if it is ringing the bell for the...

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My pastor told a story that has stuck with me about what “Entitlement Mentality” looks like. One day the doorbell rang and a women answered the door. It was a man who handed her ten, one hundred-dollar bills. He said, “This is for you, a gift with no strings attached.” She couldn’t believe it. He turned and walked away. She was so excited. The next day, the same thing happened. This was too good to be true. Again the next day the same thing. She started watching for the man to arrive and he was faithful in coming everyday. Then one day she saw the man coming up the street, but he went past her house and went to the neighbors. She was furious. “What is he doing giving “my” money to the neighbors, who does he think he is? What started out as a gift, becomes something we feel is ours, even though we have done nothing to deserve it. How many times have we done that? I know I have, especially in relationships. We fall in love, get married and this wonderful woman or man can do no wrong. We feel blessed to have this person in our lives. Then as time goes on, we realize this person isn’t as great as we thought they were. They don’t make us feel good all the time and what happened to all the good sex and romance? We start taking them for granted and start feeling like we are entitled to more. It becomes all about us, not about giving back and appreciating them for who they are. When we start focusing on our own unmet needs and not the needs of our spouse we are falling into the trap of entitlement mentality thinking. Relationships take work on both sides, but as soon as we start expecting them to meet our needs, there is a switch from feeling grateful to feeling entitled. Everyday is a gift and every breath we take is a gift. Being grateful and refusing to take ownership of things that are not really ours, in the first place, can make our lives a lot more simple and enjoyable. When we can get to the place where we believe that everything we have is from God and we really have no rights to anything, then we can be grateful for even the little things. When we lose something, we know it was never ours in the first place. How we react to our world is about who we are inside, not about the world. To read more of my blogs, visit my web site @ vickiemft.com...

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In “Streams in the Desert ” by Mrs. Chas. S. Cowman there is a story about a boy who finds a cocoon just before it metamorphosis into a butterfly.  The boy brings it into the house and a few days later, sure enough, it started moving.  He watched it with curiosity as it started its journey emerging from a cocoon to a butterfly. The first wing appeared after a long struggle and it was beautiful.  The boy watched intently as he waited for the other wing to appear.  He felt helpless as he saw the butterfly struggling to free the other wing.  Finally the boy became inpatient and decided that bringing the cocoon into the house had somehow dried it where the butterfly could not free its other wing, so he took a pair of scissors and took a very small clip off the top of the cocoon.  When he clipped the cocoon the other wing very quickly emerged, but when it did it was still wet and all shriveled up. The butterfly drug the wing around for a few hours and then died. It never was able to fly.   The story was to point out that we do the same thing to people that we see struggling.  We want to make it easier for them, when in fact the struggle is what helps them grow and mature and become more beautiful as a person. God equipped us to struggle and with the struggle comes self-confidence and strength to overcome adversity so we can live a fuller more productive life.  Parents often will clip their children’s cocoon’s when they don’t allow them to struggle to overcome obstacles in their lives. The problem is, the world is a hard place and if our children do not learn how to struggle at home and overcome adversity, where they have a soft place to fall, how are they going to survive in the world when they leave home. Parenting  with Love and Logic  allows kids to learn how to make good choices.  When they don’t,  they struggle by paying the consequences, which helps them grow and mature.  That is the way real life is, and one of our responsibilities, as parents, is to prepare our kids for the real world   If we find ourselves taking on other people’s stuff we are probably trying to clip their cocoon.  It is important to respect people’s boundaries and it is not our job to go around trying to rescue them.  If we are uncomfortable with seeing people struggle, it is probably because we do not understand the value of struggling.  When I recognized...

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