Blame Game: You Can Only Change Yourself
May 4, 2010 · Posted in Communication, Marriage, Mental Health, Parenting, Relationships · Permalink

This post from Straight Talk On Relationships explains the importance of taking control and accountability of your own emotions – enjoy!

RELATIONSHIP CHANGE: TRANSFORM YOUR RELATIONSHIP BY TRANSFORMING YOURSELF

by Lisa Merlo Booth

As human beings, our greatness lies not so much in being able to remake the world — that is the myth of the atomic age — as in being able to remake ourselves.
Ghandi

One of the biggest obstacles to transforming relationships is an individual’s endless investment in changing the other person.  Regardless of whether the individual is male or female, most people are ultra-focused on changing their partner.  Many people will say that they do what they do because their partner does what s/he does.  Do any of these sound familiar:
•    “If he would be more responsible, I wouldn’t be so controlling.”
•    “If she weren’t such a nag, I’d be home more.”
•    “If he weren’t so cold and absent, I wouldn’t have to plead with him to speak to me.”
•    “If she weren’t so critical, then I would help more around the house.”
•    “If she weren’t so unaffectionate, then I wouldn’t have had an affair.”

I hear these comments and more like them almost every day.  Believing, however, that you’re the way you are because of someone else, is not serving you.  When you excuse your behavior because of the behavior of your partner, you give your partner WAY too much power.  Since when are you not capable of controlling your own actions?

If you truly want to transform your relationships, then start by transforming yourself.  Begin by looking at yourself rather than your partner.  Pay attention to your relational mistakes and change them.  If you’re too controlling—back off.  If you’re too weak—get stronger.  If you’re too strong—soften. If you’re defensive and dismissive—listen with humility.

Stop putting the onus of control for your behavior on your partner. Your behavior is 100% your responsibility.  Always.  No one makes you be critical, passive-aggressive, controlling or intimidating.  You do that ALL by yourself.  Stop defending your position and start changing your actions.

Know that we all have our fault lines or, as I like to say, our edges.  Our edges are those behaviors that aren’t serving us.  They’re typically the behaviors that those closest to us complain about.  When we can own these edges with humility and have compassion and love for ourselves despite them, it is an incredibly freeing life shift.  Stop dismissing, justifying, rationalizing or blaming your edges on others and instead address them head on.  Change your side of the equation and it will force a change in the entire system: Changing Me, Changes We.

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