Sometimes life feels like a video game. You can’t go to the next level without passing the current level and until you pass that level, you come across similar type of characters. Even if the appearance of these characters may change, they hit you at the same spot and always hurt you in a similar way.

Things get even more complicated when you generalize whatever hurts you: As in “All men, women, bosses are alike”. However, you were the one who picked and chose him/her among many others. You were the one who decided to continue the path with him/her.

Until you discover this important and delicate point and get over your current level, you keep playing with similar types of characters. Until you find the thing that you have overlooked and begin correcting it…

If, among all this sameness, you are now willing to say hi to the new, there are a couple of things you can do which I listed below:

Change your reactions. Whenever you recognize that you are getting angry with someone, do something you have never done before when you were in a similar situation. For example, go ahead and brush your teeth. Consequently, you will break the cycle that repeats itself and will quit giving automatic responses. You will be the one that manages his/her reactions vs. your reactions managing you.

Take a look at what you can do differently about communication.  Every negative feeling occurs as a result of an unsatisfied need. Let’s say you got very angry, ask yourself: What do I really need? What is my unsatisfied need that caused me to get angry? Share the answer you find with the person you got angry with as well.  For instance, “I needed this and when it was unsatisfied, I felt angry about your behavior”. Afterwards, fulfill this need.

Clean up the accumulated sorrow and anger that you bring from your previous relationships. If you don’t take care of this step, every event in your life will resemble to the one that had wounded you and you will continue to give automatic reactions. Don’t expect your life to change before you clean up the accumulated weight from your past. (For this clean-up, you can use this letter template.)

Look at the events from a broader framework. Don’t take things personally. Remember that the events of the big picture have a meaning that you don’t recognize at this very moment. Consider that 10 years from now, the conflict at this moment will have no meaning. Ask yourself, “What does this situation teach me, what lessons can I draw from this event?”.

Don’t make assumptions. “He didn’t bring me flowers; this means he doesn’t love me.” Try to find out, understand why he didn’t bring flowers.

Whatever you are expecting, offer it yourself first. If you are expecting attention, this would be attention; if you are expecting understanding, then give out understanding… In other words, whatever it is you are willing to have, create it first in yourself.

Once you’ve finished reading this article, don’t start your words with “It is easier to say but …” Read the article one more time and even if they may be really small, take a look at what you can change.

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