Belittlement

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The definition of belittlement is to treat someone as less than.  This is something that happens all day, every day to a lot of people.  How do you treat your waitress?  How about the cashier?  It’s an easy, and apparently gratifying thing for many people to engage in.  But, even though belittling others is designed to make you look superior to them, what does it really say about the person who engages in it?  What I really want to talk about is how in your interpersonal relationships people really have to understand that just because someone is family, it doesn’t mean that the usual rules of engagement go out the window.

There is one person in my immediate family who has this habit of sitting and doodling wavy lines on a piece of paper whenever I open my mouth to say something.  Needless to say, I don’t often speak when he is around.  Instead, he speaks and I listen.  My assumption is that my role in our relationship is to listen to him and keep my mouth shut.  At least that is what our relationship has devolved to.  Does this make me want to spend any time with him?  No, of course not.  However, whenever I get upset about his behavior, I remind myself that this way of behaving says a lot more about him than it does about me.

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Being part of a community, no matter how large (or small), means that respect has to be shown as well as given.  One person can’t insist on respect while at the same time denying it to others.  There must be a mutual way of behaving, or any kind of communication will fail.  Has this behavior been directed at you?  Have you dealt with it, or have you just ignored it?  I understand that when one is in an inferior position (such as a waitress or cashier) there is really nothing to do but ignore this behavior.  However, when it occurs in a social (or family) relationship, how do you deal with it?  Let me know in the comments below.

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Confidence

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If there is something that I don’t have, it’s confidence.  Whether my lack of this attribute comes from never measuring up when I was a child, or from just simply never thinking I was all that, if there is one thing that I, and many other people lack, it’s confidence.

There are many times that a lack of confidence is simply ridiculous.  From feeling that I can’t figure out a new recipe to being unsure of how to get somewhere that I’ve been before, it doesn’t take much to shake my confidence in myself.  While I realize that one of the reasons for a lack of confidence is the simple fact that we tend to remember when someone else said something negative to us as opposed to remembering the positive things (yes, this is an actual thing, and it just goes to show you how ingrained negativity can be), it can still be a hard thing to overcome.

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Before you let yourself get stymied by your lack of confidence, try to think of a few things.  Have you done whatever it is before, and if so, how did it go?  Did you live through it?  Good, if you’re here then you obviously did.  What could go wrong, and if that does go wrong what can you do to fix it?  Lots of times if you look at the possible negatives, you realize that there are solutions, and/or that the negative is a silly possibility that probably won’t happen.  Before GPS, I used to get lost almost every time I went somewhere new.  Even though I was nervous to go anywhere outside of my comfort zone, I realized that I could always stop and ask someone for directions!  And the best thing was that no one made fun of me, and everyone was always helpful.  See, my problem had a solution that worked every time.  I still deal with nerves every time I drive somewhere new, but it’s under control (thanks to GPS), but mostly because I make myself remember all the times the outcome was positive.

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Once again, the solution to a negative is a positive.  Confidence is the same way.  Make yourself think of a situation where you were not confident but pushed through anyway, and you survived.  Confidence is a muscle that you have to use.  At the very least, learn the words to the song “I Have Confidence” from the musical “The Sound of Music”.  I use the refrain all the time myself.  Of course I don’t go around singing it out loud (not all the time, anyway), but repeating the words to yourself can do wonders.  So, go out and believe in yourself!

 

 

Negativity Kills Your Joy of Life

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Living with negative people is difficult.  Heck, even talking to negative people can cause you to feel like life isn’t worth living.  Especially with them.  For a while now, I’ve been trying to work on myself, change the things that I can and move forward with my own life.  However, when confronted consistently with someone whose goal is to make me feel less than, I find it difficult to remain positive.  I have no idea why this is happening, and I’ve decided that I am not going to spend any more time on wondering what I could have possibly done wrong to cause this abusive behavior.  Mostly because I am aware that it’s not just me that is suffering this abuse, and not one of the other people deserve it, either.  This is just who this person is.  Unfortunately, this is also a person who is a close family member that I apparently must live with.

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I wish I had wonderful advice to give anyone else who is in this situation, but I don’t.  I can tell you what it is that I’m doing to help cope.  First of all, I’ve been concentrating on improving myself.  I’ve been working on eating healthy, getting daily exercise, and working toward my goals.  I’ve also been working on decreasing my blood pressure by meditating as well as I can, (it’s a work in progress); practicing Yoga; and saying daily affirmations.  Self-worth is something that most of us have to work at, and right now my best way to help that is saying affirmations a couple of times a day.  In fact, I’ve found that the most positive thing I can do is to say them before I fall asleep.  That plants the positive in my mind so that it can work on my subconscious all night.  I’m working on saying them throughout the day, but I am not as consistent as I probably should be.   The other thing that I’ve been doing is to have as little reaction to the negative abuse as I can.  This is hard, but it helps.  If the negative person doesn’t get the reaction they desire, they will leave you alone.  If they don’t, my solution is to hide in the bathroom.

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If you are dealing with a highly negative person in your life, please let me know how you cope in the comments below.  This is a difficult way to live, and I would love to hear how you manage.

 

Aging

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Today is my birthday.  I’m not going to come right out and tell you my age, since I feel that mystery is a good thing.  However, I will tell you that even though I’m in my 50’s you wouldn’t be able to guess, since I’ve been blessed with both a baby-face, and good genes – not great, but good.  Until very recently I haven’t been taking care of my skin, instead choosing simply to put coconut oil on my face and neck every night for a number of years.  Although coconut oil is wonderful, I’ve decided that I’d probably benefit from some age-appropriate eye and face/neck night creams.  I’ve found some that I like, so that’s what I’ve been doing.  Next up on my list is to start using masks.  This is something that even though I am aware of them, I haven’t bothered to use them.

For a long time, I didn’t wear any make-up, I also didn’t bother to cut my hair for years and years at a time, choosing to wear it in a bun every single day.  I do cut my bangs with a variety of very crooked results, many of which have been amusing to the world at large.  However, as part of my effort to improve my life, I’ve started both wearing some make-up and I recently had my hair cut at a salon.  How transformative is that?

As I age, I can’t help but notice that people seem to feel that we need to fight against any obvious signs of aging, cover our gray/white hair, and pretend that we’re not getting any older.  And, for celebrities who have rocked the aging coin, Helen Mirren, we say they are “sexy for their age”.  No, Helen Mirren is sexy, period!   But exactly what is sexy, anyway.  True sexiness comes from within.  It’s confidence in yourself, and some people, like Helen, have that in spades!

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Since I read some fashion magazines (yes, it’s a little secret of mine), I find it upsetting that most models/celebrities who are featured are young or at the most, in their 40’s.  So, is it that as women we drop off the face of the earth as we become older?  I know that men get to age like “fine wine”, but what do we say about older women?  Usually, the nicest thing we say is that she “looks good for her age”, as though age is a thing we can fight and overcome.  Well, I’m here to let you in on a little secret, no matter how many facelifts and/or nip and tucks you get, you do indeed age.  It happens to ALL OF US!

So, what is my plan for aging?  Well, I’ve got those magic creams and masks.  I’m keeping my haircut up, and I’m thinking of using something to actually brighten my gray/white hair.  But most Importantly, I’m exercising, eating right and keeping myself moving.  Yes, I did just do a little dance to Saturday Night Fever in BJ’s this morning.  You know what, so did another woman who happened down my aisle.  We had fun!  So, yes, I will rage against the dying light.  Life is a gift, and I want to keep unwrapping it.

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Some Motivations for a Monday Morning

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Monday mornings can be a little difficult when it comes to getting yourself motivated. Here are a few quotes to help you!

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While each day is a new chance to begin, it’s also true that everything builds from today.  What will you build for your future?

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To Accept Yourself

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Self-acceptance seems almost impossible.  However, that is the path to true happiness.  Trying to please others in order to find happiness is doomed to fail.  The only person you absolutely need to be accepted by is yourself.

Other people may only want you to be near them because of what they can “get” from you.  They might only accept you for a variety of things that you offer; your looks, your generous nature or even your love of them.  This is not true acceptance if it’s based upon conditions.

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Accepting yourself can lead to all kinds of fabulous benefits.  Once you become comfortable in your own skin, accepting all that you have to offer, and all your own foibles, your life can literally change.  Love yourself for who you are, faults and all.  It’s what makes you unique and wonderful.  Be yourself!

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Wonder Woman

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My daughter and I finally went to see this movie the other day, and I must say that I was thrilled.  I have never read comic books, so my only background for Wonder Woman was that of the 1970’s TV show staring Lynda Carter, so I went into the movie with no preconceived notions.

I have to say that I loved this movie.  What a tribute to “female power”.  I loved that first and foremost, Diana Prince, along with the rest of the Amazons, both looked like a woman who could fight, and fought like a hardened warrior.  These were not super skinny women, these were extremely fit women who could take care of themselves.  I also loved the way that Diana Prince walked.  She strode with all the confidence in the world.  That confidence was breathtaking, and I must say that I want some of that!

I don’t want to give too much away for those of you who haven’t seen it yet, but I loved the movie.  In the realm of “power women” movies this is the best so far.  I encourage you to watch this, just to see what a confident woman looks like!

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