Do you question why your relationships don’t work? The people you know have the same relationships with others as they have with you. Don’t think you’re so special that they only treat you a certain way – they will be consistent with their behaviour in other relationships, good or bad.
There are patterns and clues to show you all the signs to answer your “why” questions – you’re just not adding them up and doing your sums! Think of your relationships as equations. Forget trying to work out Einstein’s E=mc², just use simple maths like 1 + 1 = 2
Are You The Giver or The Receiver?
Do you feel taken advantage of in a relationship? You may tolerate or give more, trying to please the other person while ignoring your own needs. This indicates that you need to be with someone who is a taker (they don’t value your needs and like the imbalance) so you can over-give. In many relationships, one person is conditioned to over-give (otherwise they feel guilty) and the other is conditioned to receive more (they think it’s their right). You are both unconsciously fulfilling a conditioning you taught in childhood. This, however, does not turn out well for the over-giver!
Are You Guilty of Over-Giver Statements?
Have you heard or said any of the following over-giver statements? This is not to say they aren’t right in any situation; they are indications of the amount of resentment the over-giver may harbour and their commitment to keep on giving. Over-givers ignore their own needs and don’t hold the other person accountable to give in return. These relationship dynamics can be with work, family, children, friends, partners, or peers.
- That’s all I get when I do everything for you.
- I can’t believe you are so selfish.
- I have worked my fingers to the bone for you.
- All you do is think about yourself.
- You don’t care about my feelings.
- I’ve given up everything for you.
- I gave this to you, so now, you owe me.
- I will be the better person and give anyway.
- I’ve sacrificed so much for you
If your relationships leave you feeling unfulfilled, you need to ask yourself why you are choosing to give when you are not being valued or appreciated.
Why do you choose to give to others instead of yourself? Your over-giving qualities means that you need to be with people who will allow your over-giving behaviour which you subconsciously seek out. This is an unsustainable way of living. It will drain you.
If you are striving for sainthood, then you are on your way to a long, drawn out, suffering life. The last time I checked, they only canonised saints after they’d been martyred and materialised two reported miracles – not worth the trouble, is it?
Running On Empty Kills Your Engine
Over-giving never has a happy ending, as you will run out of steam, energy, and Mother Teresa attributes. You deplete your body and mind of energy instead of getting a refill. If you decide to give to yourself before giving to others, then the math’s equation looks a lot different. You can teach your partner/friends/colleagues/family that your needs are essential.
This may initially ruffle a few feathers as some are accustomed to you catering to their needs. It can create resistance if the other person wants to maintain their “taker” position instead of building an equal relationship. However, you might get a pleasant surprise.
Science Shows Women are Wired to Care More than Men
To put this in perspective and get you off the hook a little, the research brain scientist, Simon Baron-Cohen explains in his book The Essential Difference: The Truth About the Male and Female Brains and the Truth About Autism is that women and men are wired to think and feel differently. He states “The female brain is predominantly hard-wired for empathy. The male brain is predominantly hard-wired for understanding and building systems.”
The Science of Men and Women’s Brains
Another world expert on the female and male brain, Louann Brizendine, M.D. has written two relevant books, The Female Brain and The Male Brain. “Until recently,” says Brizendine, “scientists assumed we all had a unisex brain. But now we know that isn’t true.” In the female brain, the part that makes decisions, “the worry-wort” center, is more significant than men’s. In the male brain, the area for sexual pursuit in the hypothalamus is 2.5 times larger than in females.
Good News for Creating Better Relationships
The good news is that it’s not your fault. Men and women naturally have different brains producing different behaviours. Newly learned behaviour is needed for both sexes to maintain balanced relationships and ensure individual needs are met. You can learn and teach the new behaviour.
You Teach People How To Treat You
Gotta love Dr Phil, who has continually coached us that we teach others how to treat us. It’s an oldie but a goodie. It’s the same concept as educating kids. Some kids push the boundaries to see how far they can go and what they can get away with. They need more educating, whereas others are naturally well mannered and polite. You get tougher with bad manners and use gentler persuasion with milder behaviour.
Women are in need of learning new empowered, assertive behaviours in relationships. I’ve had to undo and unlearn a victim mentality from the physical, sexual, and emotional abuse I encountered in childhood — these steps I’ve outlined in Freeing the Unloved Girl book. One of the steps includes learning how to express yourself and ask for what you want without feeling guilt or shame.
Practice Expressing Yourself
This powerful step entails expressing the words you want to say (or should’ve said) in your relationships. This can be done alone while driving your car or anywhere you have privacy. You verbally express your feelings, the things you thought but never said and what you want.
You can also practice your dialogue with a friend by conveying your anger, frustrations, and hurt. This process releases suppressed emotions and teaches you to express yourself more easily. When you’re ready to express yourself in situations where you held back prior, you will feel more capable of expressing yourself calmly. You will build confidence as you begin a new way of communicating in an assertive manner.
Balanced Emotions/Energy = Balanced Life
When you respect and value yourself, you reduce the amount of drama in your life and attract people who show you more respect. This, in turn, balances your emotions and energy which, balances your life. Since I created the Forensic Healing System in 2011, I’ve never known this statement to be truer as feelings are the most powerful form of energy. You have the power to change everything about your life!