Betrayal is defined as breaking a contract, agreement, trust or confidence, which results in moral, psychological conflict within a relationship.
Is it possible to break contracts, trust and confidence, which results in a moral, psychological conflict in our relationship with ourselves?
How about when we are impatient with our child, partner, or athletic progress? Is this a form of self-betrayal? What about when we go against what we know in our heart is the right thing to do? How about when we compare ourselves to others, and manage to put ourselves down? What about the excuses we generate when we do not perform at our best, what then do we tell ourselves and others? We all do this, from time to time, then make an excuse to rationalize or justify our inaction or behavior. We do this to make ourselves feel better about ourselves when we know we could have done better.
Of course we can violate our own standards, agreements and betray ourselves. Our trust for ourselves can be shaken, confidence torn down by our own actions, inactions and behaviors. This naturally will lead us to feel worse about ourselves, uncertain, doubtful, fearful and anxious.
On Labor day, work to learn about yourself, to make a positive change in your life.
Below are some solutions after describing some of the pitfalls that lead us to betray ourselves:
1. Reactivity: a quick answer particularly if it is defensive will lead us to making a behavioral choice we often regret.
2. Taking something too personally: many times the actions of others are not about us and it’s easy to respond as though it is.
3. Assumptions: Did we assume we were right about something or someone, without keeping an open mind or checking out the reality of the situation first?
4. Did we promise more than we could deliver? When we overcommit and under deliver, we feel worse about ourselves, and negatively impact our relations.
5. Judging: can be so automatic we are not even aware of how often we judge ourselves and others, “this is good, that is bad.” When we judge ourselves, and others, we hurt our relationships rather than enhance them. We contribute to our own dissatisfaction in life. Implicit in judgment is the notion that someone is better than another. This does not acknowledge the humanity and equality of all people, it’s objectifying.
6. Poisonous words: a) saying hurtful things directly towards others, damages relationships or b) using hurtful words about others behind their back, betrays our own integrity. (Gossip)
7. Blame: many of us use blame to rationalize our own view. We blame another person’s actions as the cause of our own.
8. Justification: Possibly we need to be seen as
an expert, or be seen as important by others, or we like to be right, often at the expense of the relationship or the other person. Any “need to be seen as” a certain way, will likely contribute to being inauthentic, self-deceiving and self-betraying.
Thoughts after we betray our hearts:
- We exaggerate our self-importance
- We exaggerate the faults of others, in our mind
- We minimize our own faults
- We fail to take responsibility thereby collude with the other person to maintaining self-justification rather than genuine fulfillment and satisfaction.
There is an age old saying, “would you rather be right or would you rather be happy?” This saying implies that you cannot have both at the same time.
Yet, we can maintain an attitude of self-betrayal, with a heart at war, towards one person while not being this way towards another. Therefore it is not nearly as simplistic as the age old saying professes.
After we betray our hearts and we exaggerate our importance, justify our misbehaviors, we unintentionally elicit the behaviors in others that we are specifically trying to avoid. This is part of the collusion. Typically, we are so busy making ourselves feel better about ourselves, after a self-betrayal, we fail to notice our own role in the creation of the problem in the first place.
Instead learn to take accountability for your own role and responsibility in your interactions.
Step 1: Take Responsibility!
Learn to take responsibility for your role in all your interactions. I truly can’t stress this enough. For example, if your body language is tense, and your heart is at war, but you say something pleasant attempting to hide your true feelings and position, is it felt or received as incongruent by the other person? You will not be fooling people with whom you interact about your genuine position, and you will not likely fool yourself. Sometimes it is important to take the right action, even if we cannot feel aligned with it in our heart. This is an opportunity to learn something about yourself and understand what is keeping you from being fully aligned? Are you more important in your own mind? Or are you blaming someone else for your state of being and life satisfaction or circumstances? Ask yourself what exactly is going on beneath the surface of yourself, what is in your heart?
If I ask you simply, “what speaks louder, actions or words?” The majority of you all will admit that actions speak louder than words. This means that our body language, our attitudes and actions speaks volumes, the words are rarely necessary. Communication research states that approximately 93% of all communication occurs with our body language, and 7 % of communication relies on our words.
Your responsibility is to learn to take ownership of your role in all your interactions. If you need to learn to regulate your body language, align yourself with your heart, that is your responsibility.
When you misbehave, and you will, as we all do from time to time, own up to it, make your wrongdoing right, apologize, let it go, and learn everything you can about what were the circumstances leading up to your misbehavior. Ask yourself how you can better handle the situation next time and then move on, without dwelling on it.
Step 2: Community!
Create community of support, and be a supportive member of your community. When our lives are going smoothly, it’s easier to give to others, but how about when we are having a rough spot? This can be the most healing time for you to give yourself, your time, energy and attention to others. It will take your mind off your own problems, and allow you to feel good about helping someone else.
How about if someone wrongly accuses you of doing something you did not do. Is it easy in this moment to think of the other person? Typically it is not easy to think about the other person, when we are busy feeling defensive. Growing defensive in response to being misunderstood or misrepresented is a natural reaction. However, if you allow the accusation to cause you to react defensively, then you are betraying yourself by justifying your defensive behaviors. In this moment pause, take a deep breath, then seek to understand the person and where he or she is coming from, rather than to be understood.
Step 3: Focus on Solutions
It is easy for many of us to stay focused on a problem rather than ask the questions that will move ourselves to solutions. Seek to move out of problem thinking and into solution finding as fast as possible. When you learn from your mistakes and move towards solutions you will learn and grow from each and every experience you encounter—making yourself a better person and leading a more rewarding life.
Interested in how to best apply this to your life and circumstance to improve your wellbeing email Karen@TrueFormCoaching.com or visit www.TrueFormCoaching.com Or call (520) 955-9503