Friday, June 28, 2013

I'm Not Everyone's Cup Of Tea

Coffee #17
Coffee is not my cup of tea. Most people I know enjoy coffee to varying degrees but I have never liked it and don't even enjoy the smell of it brewing. If I don't like coffee does that mean I should feel bad about it? Of course not. 

Same goes with people. I recently ended a longterm friendship with someone who I loved very much because I was not her cup of tea and instead of talking out our differences or respecting them she felt they were divisive and decided to check out of our friendship. (Don't worry she won't see this, she doesn't read my stuff.)

We can choose to be less of ourselves to not offend people, we can choose to blend in so everyone likes us, or we can just be ourselves and let the people who enjoy us be in our lives. And the thing is there isn't anything necessarily wrong with people who choose not to have Joy in their lives. It's ok, I'm just not their cup of tea. 

I like tea. I like me. I find being yourself is much less of a grind when you worry less about everyone liking you and more about people who do like you getting to enjoy the fully roasted, deep, and delicious YOU! :) 

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Starting With ME = More Joyful WE!

People say they love their kids. Would do anything for them… give a kidney, run through fire, or protect them from any outsider who wanted to harm them. I believe this to be true.

Ok, great. How about giving them their happiest parent possible? How about 2 happy parents? Would they do that? Would You?

We think taking care of others means doing for them, giving them things, sacrificing our time, energy and money so they can have. No denying that is a part of the equation but many times it’s not and shouldn’t be the key factor. It’s totally un-pc to say this but our happiness is what makes or breaks our relationships and kids. We can’t be exhausted, unfulfilled, uninspired, unhealthy, un-loved-up and expect our family to thrive. Our overall joy is predicated on how happy and healthy we are and how much we have left to share with others. If we’re drained we have nothing to give or we give the backwash.

I was talking with a friend about her sex life and no need to get into details but let’s just say as soon as she started feeling great about herself (working out, getting enough sleep, projects that inspired her) she felt happier and much sexier and her husband saw the benefits. He wanted her to get as happy as she could get if that was the result! They were better as a couple when each were happy individually and came together to create a more joyful home. The Joy Math supposes that what we bring into the equation of partnership has to be greater or equal then what we expect to get out of it. We can't be with someone in whatever capacity (love, friendship, work) and expect them to add more then we are willing to give ourselves. 

It’s far more difficult and unpleasant to be married to, parented by, work with, or be friends with someone who is not flourishing. There are obvious negative-nellies who everyone can clearly see are draining their kids, partner, co-workers and friends, but I’m not talking about that necessarily. I’m more referring to the numb-ers who do, do, do for others and don't give the same or equal to themselves. They numb their needs down which in-turn sets a bad example for their kids of how to live a fulfilling life. Or who are wasting a great marriage by just being in it- not engaging with their love like a lover. And I don’t just mean sex, I mean enjoying life and being with them like it’s an adventure and loveaffair worthy of what they want to create as a family.

Ask your love if they would like to see the happiest most joyful you?

Ask yourself if you don't love seeing them when they're loving their life?

A great way to start is to create your own ME Map and see what is working and not in your current life and start making small increments of change using the Circle Of JOY.

I’m finalizing my WE (Mapping) Workshop, coming this Fall, and one of the key points I’ve found is we can’t be truly happy with someone else if we’re not making our own joy a priority. 

Starting with ME makes us a way better WE!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Reviving Dead Horses, Dodging Charging Bulls

S. Alvarez
It must have been all the old movies and romantic comedies I watched in my youth but I grew up believing big conflicts were usually simple misunderstandings and things always work out in the end. Granted my parents divorced and people I've loved have died, but still I was a hopeful child and grew into a hope-filled adult.

Not naive or unrealistic but I really genuinely thought that if you cared about someone even if you didn't end up with the fairytale you could end up as friends. My first love and I spent his last Christmas together (before he passed away) over a decade after we broke up; another love and I are still close even after they married someone else. Of the four people I've loved in my life only one was unrepairable.

I do this with friendships too. And herein lies the problem, I try and keep things connected even after there is no life left. I've stayed in friendships way past the expiration date. Even after someone's shown me they're not a good -let alone great- friend I've tried to revive that connection because there was still some love left.
You can't keep everyone that's ever been important to you in your life,
otherwise you won't have room for people that might become even more important. 
Ironically a friend who is no longer a close friend told me that. Still brilliant advise. So when a friendship is dying and someone stops carrying I'm learning to let them go... not easy... but you can't revive dead horses.

Another ill advised habit along the same lines is when someone was upset with me I would try and find out why and fix it. Then recently a very wise person told me: sometimes people are just mad and/or nuts... so when they are angry and coming at you don't charge into the situtation and try and fix it. People's anger at you isn't always (read: often) about you. If someone is that mad and you didn't kill their dog, screw their sister, or take their life savings maybe they are angry and you just happen to be in their way.

Rational people that have a valid point talk things out like adults, mad people are mad and instead of trying to reason with a charging bull run the other way or at least get out of their path so they don't trample you.

There are plenty of people in the world that will treasure our friendship/relationship, will argue rationally, will even fight fair, but for those that show us they don't or won't, we need to stop reviving and know when to let things go ... and when to stay out of the way.