when you change, others change

This was my epiphany yesterday when I was speaking to a friend. I have changed alot in the last 5 years and as a result have seen how the people around me has positively changed how they interact with me. I attribute this spurt of growth to my move to San Diego, CA from North Haven, CT. Since moving here, I have become more confident, strong, and assertive with who I am, my decisions, and what I stand for in terms of values and beliefs. When I speak to some of my family and friends I notice I respond differently to their tendencies to be critical, judgmental, and negative. I know they come from a place of love, so I’ve learned that this is their disposition or I can’t expect them to understand me or our decisions. In the past I used to internalize their comments and stew over it for a while and have it affect my thoughts and feelings. However, now I listen to their comments, let it pass if need be, confidently share my perspective, and if need be, agree to disagree with them. Then I get off the phone and let it all go without ruminating over it or wishing I said this or that he/she would just act differently. Since employing this new way of responding to these particular individuals, I have found that I am more at peace with my relationships with them and can stand tall as an individual when they come to me with opposing views. Additionally, I’ve noticed they have changed with their approach towards me. They are more open to my ideas, unique perspectives, life decisions, and in general, our conversations are more respectful, mature, and pleasant. What I’ve learned from this epiphany is that change needed to start with me since I can’t control them. Once I changed for myself to have the skills and strength to respond accordingly, their old tactics didn’t work anymore so therefore they were forced to change how they interacted with me. I think this phenomenon may only occur in relationships that have meaning to both parties though, I am not sure…

Have you had the same epiphany or are going through the same journey? I’d love to hear from you!

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About Reaksmey

hi :) i'm reaksmey (reeks-may) and I love to think, reflect, and grow. do you? my life includes a handsome husband and a lively infant. here's where i write about how i grow through life's ups and downs so that i can humbly encourage you daily.
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4 Responses to when you change, others change

  1. Gigi says:

    What an amazing Blog! I admire you for your honesty, openness and being able to let go of being judged. I look forward to reading more.

    Just to let you know, I composed a “Grateful List” so I can keep from feeling inundated. Thanks for the lovely reminder. :)

    Reaksmey Reply:

    Thank you Gigi for your kind words! I am glad to hear you’ve made the list. Keep me updated. There are so many beauties within a day that we can focus on to shift from focusing on the negative. I am challenged by this daily.

  2. I think one of the biggest things you change in this situation is your expectations. That has been one of the most helpful things I have learned. I have a person in my life who is critical, volatile, self-centered. I kept expecting that person to care about me, my feelings, what all I had done for them and was constantly hurt that that wasn’t happening. When I changed my expectations from what I wanted to happen to what had been happening – criticism, volatile, self-centered – that is what I can expect from the other person, I realize they have a problem and I am no longer expecting something that is impossible to get from that other person. Although it is not what I want, at least I am not constantly being hurt by expecting the wrong thing.

    Reaksmey Reply:

    Thank you for sharing Calva! I completely can relate. Shifting expectations makes a profound difference and for me, I’ve found it to be an effective way to protect myself. Also, it’s one of the few things we can change because we all know we can’t change the other person. I am so glad to hear that you have made this shift and that it is making a difference for you!

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