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PostPosted: Tue Oct 04, 2016 9:56 pm 
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Lesson 34
Obstacles to achieving emotional maturity (immediate gratification, guilt, and shame)

Part A. Run in with immediate gratification

I can't remember how old I was at the time, i'd imagine I was in middle school or early high school, but i was spending the day over at my mother's office instead of at home. At times when I would visit my mom's office when i wasnt playing video games, I would watch porn on her work computer, my anxiety at getting caught was high but i continued to do it anyway.
One day it got out of hand though, I saw something that must have been incredibly arousing to me because a few minutes after i exited the room, walked past my mom's office staff and locked myself in the bathroom and began masturbating. It didnt matter that there were people literally a few feet away on the other side of the door, or that my mom was nearby as well, I felt I couldnt control myself I needed to finish.

Part B. Anxiety

Trying to ignore my sexual compulsive thoughts starts off subtle. I will myself to try to ignore it or say no, but an ember of desire remains in my mind. Minutes or hours go by and I have the impulse again, that ember grows into a small flame, i know that flame is there but I ignore it, its too small to harm me. But as more time passes, whether that same day or the next, that flame becomes a Big Daddy Flame, a pyre, and it is too large and too scalding hot to ignore anymore. I need to get rid of that flame so that I can focus on my homework, so that I can get on with the day, so I try to extinguish the flame by hurling glasses of water at it.

Now when I get anxiety around people, starting conversations or being around others in general, that anxiety feels ice cold and immediate instead of the subtle growing whisper that is compulsive anxiety. My Social Anxiety freezes me in place, causes me to question my worthiness, self esteem and efficacy. And it feels like a light switch, if I get a positive response from someone that ice thaws and melts fairly quickly. If I get a neutral or negative response (i tend to perceive neutral as negative) that ice hardens and becomes apathy and even sometimes contempt.

The only other I can think of in terms of anxiety is through fear. Rushing to accomplish something that I have put off doing, or fearing some sort of negative response results in a frenzied anxiety. I'd relate this fear anxiety as being close with compulsive anxiety, at a point it feels all consuming, nothing else matters.

Part C.
When it comes to masturbation it becomes more of a trance. I can break out of the trance but I quickly fall back into it, not thinking of consequences or even the physical relief that orgasm would bring, it seems as if i just do it for the sake of doing it at that point. It feels as if I am sleep walking or in this case i guess sleep wanking, i think that I should stop and i usually do before i end up orgasming but its a process of stopping and starting again several times before i fall asleep. This is what people would call Edging

When watching porn I am more alert or conscious with my thoughts. I recognize and think to myself that what I am watching is being acted out, those close ups i'm seeing is some camera man zooming in on someone's wang or taco, and etc. I still get into a bit of a trance though as I keep searching for videos, but the trance is not as deep as edging when I go to sleep or wake up in the morning.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2016 8:49 am 
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Lesson 35
Health Monitoring 2.0

Many of the values that i listed for myself have been left on the side of the road due to me falling into old habits along with other things happening. For some of them though i have worked on, i'd say around 3 out of the 15 i have worked on consistently.

The start out my daily monitoring my first value will be: Seeking opportunities to be myself around others and learn about the people and environment around me.
I feel a bit component of my compulsive habits comes from the belief that I need to be something i'm not in order to be successful at anything, with relationships, education, at work etc. So this will be a good place to start I think.
I'm going to write it on a piece of paper and put it on my apartment bathroom mirror, and on my duffel bag for when i visit my parents for the weekend.

For weekly monitoring the 3 values i was talking about: Being more introspective, practicing integrity, and facing my fears I will cover at the end of the week and keep them in mind whenever i write in my journal. I'm not quite sure i have anything specifically planned other than going to class or to work.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2016 9:38 am 
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Joined: Thu Apr 29, 2010 8:07 pm
Posts: 3856
Location: UK
Hello PZ
Quote:
Many of the values that i listed for myself have been left on the side of the road due to me falling into old habits


is this the case?
or could it be that falling into old habits is due to leaving those values on the side of the road
I suggest that you think on this, re visit and evaluate reasons for and extent of change and establish a course of action to work those val;ues into your very being

_________________
Remember recovery is more than abstinence
Every transition begins with an ending
Do not confuse happiness with seeking pleasure
stay healthy keep safe
Coach Kenzo


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 02, 2016 11:04 am 
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Kenzo wrote:
Hello PZ
Quote:
Many of the values that i listed for myself have been left on the side of the road due to me falling into old habits


is this the case?
or could it be that falling into old habits is due to leaving those values on the side of the road
I suggest that you think on this, re visit and evaluate reasons for and extent of change and establish a course of action to work those val;ues into your very being


Hi Kenzo

I have been quite passive when it comes to my values, to be honest before this past week of returning to daily monitoring, i barely even thought about them. I became caught up in chasing after results rather than building foundations that leads to progress towards those results. Because of that I fall prey to my old friends apathy, guilt, quick pleasure.

Much like what i am finding to be true with my education, the lack of foundation will cause the whole building to eventually crumble and fall. If I take things a step at a time rather than trying to do everything at once, I feel I will be getting somewhere. I think thats the hardest thing for me, having the patience to find things out for myself rather just have the answer given to me, even it takes me alot more time to figure out than i feel it should.

I think i established awareness for the value that i worked on this week, i'm going to move that to weekly monitoring. For the next few weeks I think i will focus on revising my values and working on establishing awareness for those as well before i move on to the next lesson.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2016 4:27 pm 
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Lesson 36 - The Role of Boundaries

--------Revised 3/6/2017
Situations where having weak boundaries ended up making situations more volatile than they initially would be have usually involved my perceived inability to say No to situations.
-Saying Yes to people because i feel i owe them, instead of genuinely wanting to spend time with them
-Overstaying my welcome in situations where i agreed to spend time with others
-Ending phone calls or conversations when i am fatigued or simply dont want to talk about a subject
-Projecting my insecurities on others and internalizing shame when things didnt go as planned
Situations that relate to these almost always feel reactionary and lead to a common emotion of mine: Contempt. In time i grow to mildly despise these people in some way, i criticize their actions and pick apart what they say silently. All because i felt i couldnt say No to certain things

This is an area i hope building strong boundaries will 'heal' so to speak. I hope to be able to say no to people and situations without internalizing guilt or shame for my decisions. i hope to handle situations a bit more maturely and say what needs to be said even if it is unpleasant or causes conflict. The more i dont address any issues or concerns i have with others the more rigid i become with those people and ultimately, the more i want to distance myself from them.
Being Kind vs Being Nice.


Last edited by PeacefulZero on Mon Mar 06, 2017 12:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 08, 2016 2:59 am 
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-----------------PS to myself
Reworked values big time into more practical terms, make sure you go back and revise the proactive plans, and previous lists before delving into boundaries

1. Becoming more Self aware of my thoughts, my emotions, and my actions in my day to day life - self awareness
2.I want to learn patience in regards to my education, my desires, and my struggles - patience
3. I want to practice embracing my sexual nature without shame - sexuality
4.i will take time each day to write my viewpoint about how i feel about something before looking at others opinions - identity
5. I will look for ways to be honest about my thoughts and feelings to my family - Authenticity / Vulnerability
6. I will seek out interests that encourage me to put forth effort intellectually or physically - Fulfillment
7. I want to be more consistent in the tasks and habits that I do
8/ I want to express my creativity and wackiness through writing and other creative mediums
9. I want to develop my body to be more healthier and have more endurance
10. I want to learn how to practice Humility and see the possible perspectives of other people
11. I want to learn how to trust my decisions and actions after i have put genuine thought into them - confidence
12. I want to practice being more open minded towards situations, problems and people
13. I want to practice allowing myself to do things I enjoy without feeling guilty ( video games, comic books )
14. I will be more proactive towards introducing myself to others and getting to know them
15. I will face my fears and allow myself to be more spontaneous than i am used to


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 18, 2016 11:56 am 
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Proactive plans revision

1. Becoming more Self aware of my thoughts, my emotions, and my actions in my day to day life - self awareness
v:Meditate for a few minutes early in the morning after you wake.
v: Schedule time each day to be alone with your thoughts, no music, no tv, no video games for 15 to 30 minutes
v: Put aside some time each day to write in your journal honestly for a few pages
v: Ask yourself why you feel the way that you do
v: Accept your emotions instead of trying to stuff them away, either vent them in your journal or through alone time

2.I want to learn patience in regards to my education, my desires, and my struggles - patience
v: Focus on one activity at a time. Focus on doing that activity well, then moving on
v: Keep in mind that you wont be able to do everything you want to, pick out a few things to focus on the next day before you go to bed
v: In regards to video games, try to focus in on a few games only, and finish those up before you start others
v: In regards to freetime if you do not enjoy a tv show, video game, book, it is ok to go on hiatus or stop partaking in activity completely.

3. I want to practice embracing my sexual nature without shame - sexuality
v: Take time each week to practice masturbating without porn and without fantasy
v: while masturbating try not to make orgasm a priority or even a requirement, as with the journal allow yourself take time for the activity.
v: Write down any sexual discoveries or insights in your journal
v: in regards to porn, allow yourself to be honest with your desires and ask yourself if you can be open about watching it or if it is fear keeping the habit alive.
v: talk about sexual questions or insights with friends or therapist
v: Become comfortable expressing feelings and intimacy with other people

4. i will take time each day to write my viewpoint about how i feel about something before looking at others opinions - identity
v: Take a minute or so to come to your own conclusions about certain things and allow yourself to explore other pespectives, seeing which ones your agree with and which ones you disagree with
v: Take time to do things on your own, go to the movies, take yourself out to dinner, go to the apartment
v: Schedule alone time for yourself each day, but also take time to consider ways to spend time with friends and family. Try to find a healthy balance
v: Keep working at giant eagle, it helps bring in a bit of financial independence outside of school and allows you to explore avenues that interest you.
v: Be honest in your writing, for your journal and even stories, if it is something that is always censored, something that you would be ok with Mom, Dad, friends reading that may not be a good way of going about it. Allow yourself to express each emotion honestly, even if it is harsh, even if it is scandelous, be as authentic as possible
v: In regards to purchasing things or going to see movies, allow yourself to experience those things regardless of what reviews say if you really want to see them
v: Share your opinions and insights with friends, family, and on the internet

5.I will look for ways to be honest about my thoughts and feelings to my family - Authenticity / Vulnerability
v: Learn to take criticism objectively even if you dont agree with it, shutting out all advise you dont agree with may not be wise
v:check in with yourself when talking to others or in regards to your feelings to make sure you are being authentic with what you say and not being brutally honest as a defense mechanism for issues you havnt dealt with yet
v: Check in with yourself and your boundaries
v: allow yourself to approve and disapprove of others actions, rather than the person themself
v: Allow yourself to disagree with others, evne if it sparks conflict
v: Dont be afraid to show your thoughts and interpretations on things to your family and friends
v:Take time to be alone and say when you need some time to yourself
v: -Be aware when you are being brutally honest in order as a defense mechanism for not being honest with yourself
v: Observe situations where you can be yourself or adapt in a way to be socially appropriate while being yourself

6. I will seek out interests that encourage me to put forth effort intellectually or physically - Fulfillment
v: Take time to do things you enjoy, even if there is no money involved (writing, learning how to play guitar, sports)
v: focus on one thing at a time, make sure you dont get overwhelmed by all the possibilities
v: allow yourself to try things you are not proficient at, or that are difficult to do
v: allow yourself to challenge assumptions about yourself, such as thinking you are unable to assertive, loud, upfront
v: confront others with behavior that you take offense in
v: allow yourself to finish work instead of making it perfect. Strive for 'good enough' , finish, then go back and make it better if possible
v: be wary of looking for fulfillment or purpose in activities that numb you (video games, music, movies)

7. I want to be more consistent in the tasks and habits that I do
v: strive to do tasks you deem important to you every day, even if it is with decreased energy, frequency, or productivity. Do it every day
v: break tasks dont into manageable chunks
v: cut out time eater activities that you know you would be better off not doing right now
v: strive for 'putting on foot in front on the other' just get started. Just show up
v: take time to think about what tasks, activities are actually important to you, not what you feel you should do.
v: Just show up

8. I want to express my creativity and wackiness through writing and other creative mediums
v: Write about whatever the hell you want, however you want
v: take time to think about what do you want the main character to be like
v: plan out the story if possible, but if not just start writing, let the character decide where it goes
v: for journal writing allow yourself to be raw when writing, and write for a few pages if possible. Dont be stingy Peaceful
v: for practicing guitar, dont be embarassed when you play in the apartment. just try your best
v: try things that interest you, that your curious about (paintball, rock climbing, dancing)
v: take time to read for a bit each day
v: allow yourself to explore new music artists and genres

9. I want to develop my body to be more healthier
v: take time to eat healthier food, start out with just breakfast. Try to cook breakfast or vary what you eat for breakfast each day. Try to be aware or what you eat
v: Try different exercises and see what you like doing
-tai chi
-krav maga
-lumbar exercises
v: try to exercise everyday for 30 minutes
v: try to get at least 7 to 8 hours of sleep each day
v: try to go to bed before 11 o clock

10. I want to learn how to practice Humility and see the possible perspectives of other people
v: consider if you would react the same way as that person if you were in their shoes
v: allow yourself to approve and disapprove of others actions, rather than the person as a human being as a whole - making assumptions
v: check in with your own feelings
v: ask questions of others, not to respond but rather to understand them better
v: practice active listening
v: work out ways to get alone time to recharge to how to spend time with others

11. I want to learn how to trust my decisions and actions after i have put genuine thought into them - confidence
v: Regardless of what happens in a situation, trust that you will be able to handle to result
v: Speak up about how you feel and truly want
v: if thought is put into a decision, trust in your judgement and move on with your day
v: Do things challenging tasks - such as getting to know someone, asking someone out, allowing yourself to go outside the box
v: Express yourself honestly, despite being scared shitless to do so

12. I want to practice being more open minded towards situations, problems and people
v:Practice problem solving skills via puzzles, logic puzzles, and situations that stimulate you intellectually
v: Consider all possible reasons for why someone is doing what they are doing
v: Brainstorm all possible solutions, even unconventional ones
v: allow yourself to try new things sometimes
v: allow yourself to experiment with things for a certain amount time and then check in with how you feel about it at the end

13. I want to practice allowing myself to do things I enjoy without feeling guilty ( video games, comic books )
v: Most importantly realize it is ok to do things by yourself, you do not need company in order to enjoy yourself
v: allow yourself to go to the theatre alone and see a movie
v: take yourself out to dinner
v: schedule time to hang out at the bookstore
v: explore cafes and quiet places to contemplate and study
v: close your door at your parents house if you desire privacy and quiet

14. I will be more proactive towards introducing myself to others and getting to know them
v: Introduce myself and ask how their day is going
v: throw out hints and hooks of my interests
v: ask questions to better understand the person rather to respond in a cool manner
v: practice self awareness when you notice you are trying to people please
v: Dont feel obligated to stay in a relationship that you view as negative, harmful

15. I will face my fears and allow myself to be more spontaneous than i am used to
v: explore things out of curiosity, allow yourself to go off the beaten path sometimes
v: allow yourself to explore events even if they were not originally planned in your schedule
v: dont feel obligated to stay through entire event if you do go, excuse yourself if you feel exhausted or frustrated.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 01, 2017 5:59 pm 
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Lesson 37
Crafting my boundaries - Revised 3/7/2017

Self Awareness
Absolute Boundary 1 - Any time i catch myself at a 'crossroads' or have moment of conflict before i follow through with doing something I will allow myself to stop, think, and then act.
Absolute Boundary 2 - I will not follow through with an action filled with malice towards another person.
Absolute Boundary 3 - When i am in poor mental or physical health, or just feel very unsure about something I will say no and take time to rest and recover.
Boundary 4 - I will not go through with things that i know will harm my health
Boundary 5 - I will not take rejections personally when able


Patience

Absolute Boundary 1 - If i am aware that i am actively avoiding something, i will take a small action towards addressing that problem
Absolute Boundary 2 - I will not assume that i am failing or that i am inadequate because i do not see immediate results from what i do
Absolute Boundary 3 - I will give someone the benefit of the doubt if they do me wrong, but if they do it again then i will distance myself from them
Boundary 4 - I will not expect to be really good at something (building skill) in a few weeks or a month
Boundary 5 - I will check in with myself to see that i really want something or that i am interested in it before buying it

Sexuality

Absolute Boundary #1. If I am uncomfortable in a sexual situation, i will not convince myself to go through with it
Absolute Boundary 2 - I will not go through with a sexual action if i feel it will harm other aspects of my life the next day, the future
Absolute Boundary #3. I will not masturbate anywhere that is not within the walls of a home environment (home, apartment, hotel)
Boundary #4. I will not try to manipulate or convince someone to be sexual with me if they are uncomfortable or uninterested
Boundary #5. I will not shame myself or my sexuality. I am open to trying new things but if its not my cup of tea then i will not judge myself and i will try not to judge others as well.

Physical and Mental Health

Absolute Boundary 1 - I will prioritize sleep over entertainment
Absolute Boundary 2 - I will address any bodily issues that i am concerned about as soon as possible
Absolute Boundary 3 - I will not cause physical harm to any partners i may have
Boundary 4 - If i am aware that i am in pain because i am avoiding addressing something, then i will take actions to address the issue
Boundary 5 - I will not seek to belittle or use others as a means to an end

Responsibility

Absolute Boundary 1 - I will not assume that anyone or anything can 'fix me' or set things right in my life other than myself
Absolute Boundary 2 - I will not take responsibility for what others do or think about me
Absolute Boundary 3 - I will not expect others to take responsibility for my needs or thoughts
Boundary 4 - I will not forbid myself to try new things and experience life
Boundary 5 - I will not push others into improving or changing themselves if they are not ready or do not want to.


Last edited by PeacefulZero on Tue Mar 07, 2017 4:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Thu Jan 12, 2017 11:15 pm 
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Lesson #38
- Revised 3/10/2017

Growing and Strengthening Boundaries - Choosing when the cross and observing good and bad consequences. Learn from Decision

Situations that may threaten Self Awareness
- Peer Pressure or Interactions with others: my boundaries will be tested in a way that may be subtle or direct, people may want me to do things i do not agree with or push me to act in a way i do not want to act.
~My boundaries of taking time to stop and think for myself before i act would help stand against this charge, as would giving my permission to simply decline something
-Autopilot : Habits that i have formed when emotionally distraught or agitated that i do without thinking
~I feel my boundaries would help with this as well but i would add
(Boundary: If i find myself becoming obsessive or repeating actions expecting something different, i will take a moment to do something completely different)

Situations that may threaten Patience
-Ego Tantrum : I feel i have done work on something (when i've done very little) or react out of fear and go manic/take myself super seriously
~ I think my absolute boundaries would help address this situation but my normal ones may or may not, i'm uncertain they'd be able to hold. Some alternatives may be (4. I will wait until i calm down before i proceed with doing something)
-People : There will be times where people may take me for granted or treat me poorly
~ I think my boundaries would be good for this one, Baby steps would be addressing the issue and being upfront with the person

Situations that may threaten Sexuality
-Opportunities : Some one may offer to have sex with me spontaneously (unsafe sex) or pressure me to try something new
~ I feel my boundaries would hold up on this situation fairly well
-Idealism : Harboring unrealistic goals or expecting my partner to be someone she's not
~ my boundary for no manipulation kind of applies to this but i could add (Boundary: I will not push my sexual values or desires on my partner)

Situations that may threaten Physical/Mental Health
-Comfort Zone : I may postpone doing work in order to avoid being bored, feeling inadequate or feeling i'm not up to the task
~My Boundary for addressing pain when noticed would help here i think, could also be interpreted as (I will not intentionally inflict pain on myself when possible. But i will not run away from the possibility of it either)
-Stress and Heavy Schedule : May forgo exercise or activities that i enjoy or interaction with others due to foul moods or work loads
~Would definitely add the boundary of (Boundary: I will give myself Alone time before moving on to the next task)

Situations that may threaten Responsibility
- Embarrassment : I often overthink things or think people will secretly make fun of me for whatever mistakes i may make. It makes me blame things on others and not want to make decisions for myself.
~My boundaries i think would be good for this situation, adding to them (I will not take myself so seriously)
-Depression : It makes me want to procrastinate and feeds my thinking that no one loves me, that i dont love myself, and that nothing matters
~Boundary to add for this one may be (I will not participate in distraction activities when depressed, i will instead initiate alone time)


Last edited by PeacefulZero on Fri Mar 10, 2017 10:51 pm, edited 4 times in total.

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2017 11:12 pm 
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revised or deleted for revision


Last edited by PeacefulZero on Tue Mar 07, 2017 4:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2017 10:57 pm 
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revised or deleted for revision


Last edited by PeacefulZero on Tue Mar 07, 2017 5:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Thu Jan 19, 2017 11:11 pm 
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Revised or deleted for revision


Last edited by PeacefulZero on Tue Mar 07, 2017 4:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 22, 2017 5:09 pm 
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intermission----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Values that were poorly chosen or badly defined

4.i will take time each day to write my viewpoint about how i feel about something before looking at others opinions - identity
6. I will seek out interests that encourage me to put forth effort intellectually or physically - Fulfillment
7. I want to be more consistent in the tasks and habits that I do
11. I want to learn how to trust my decisions and actions after i have put genuine thought into them - confidence
12. I want to practice being more open minded towards situations, problems and people
13. I want to practice allowing myself to do things I enjoy without feeling guilty ( video games, comic books )
14. I will be more proactive towards introducing myself to others and getting to know them
15. I will face my fears and allow myself to be more spontaneous than i am used to
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Keep
Self Awareness
Patience
Health
Sexuality
Creativity
Humility
Vulnerability
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Add new values here after consideration
Intimacy
Not knowing / Skepticism
Responsibility for my own problems
Honesty - to myself and to others
Courage


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 20, 2017 10:26 am 
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~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Value Analysis
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Self Awareness in daily life - aware sometimes but mainly focused on emotions and the self when making decisions. Need to put more effort into looking outside of myself and consider others as well
Patience - Need to put more effort into focusing on one task at a time
Health - major neglect, Need to spend more time outside apartment, eat healthier and exercise
Sexuality - Sexual beliefs so far encourage unsafe sex among other harmful ideas.
Responsibility - Need to spend more time alone without distractions, be observant of what needs are going unmet
Integrity - Need to prioritize school work over pleasure. Need to be more honest with myself
Creativity - Need to write in journal when possible
Vulnerability - Good progress with family, but still super armored against others
Intimacy - Views of intimacy skewered, have no idea what i want or expect. Pay close attention to this one ---links with sexuality
Skepticism - Need to question if things are as bad as i sometimes believe them to be, challenge biases and negative thoughts
Authenticity - need to really work on this one, focus on not trying to be perfect or something i'm not
Wisdom - Need to consider what has happened so far and learn from my mistakes, as well as accept new information
Courage - Need to get out of comfort zone to truly grow
Humility - Need to consider how my decisions affect others more


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 02, 2017 3:22 pm 
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Lesson 40 - The boundaries of others - Revised 3/14/17
I.
Helping other people reinforce boundaries.
-For what i can think of, to help others identify their boundaries a good idea may be to listen to them if they are willing to talk about it. I think of my little sisters, if they were having an issue, perhaps asking them questions about how they felt about the situation and trying not to judge their reaction. Also even if i feel i can help, giving them space if they dont want to talk about it and offering them to come and talk when their ready.

II.
If i happen to cross someone's boundary....
-I must take a quick mental note that i went too far and strive to learn from my mistake
-Brief apology to someone and give space (if argument)
-Acknowledge that i crossed someone's boundary and change conversation topics

III.
My Reaction
- I would feel ashamed that i crossed a boundary, i think it would be good to silently acknowledge that feeling but not let it consume my thoughts and actions. To be able to say to myself, i messed up and take responsibility for my actions, even if its yelling (which i'm wary of conflict in general so that'd startle me) or worse.
- Also for whatever reaction i get, it would be well to not take it personally or hold a grudge against someone for their decision or action towards me.


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