Choosing the right relationship partner can be quite daunting. But how a person has behaved in past relationships best predicts how they’ll eventually treat you.
Character matters more than ever in our age of widespread narcissism – a culture of entitlement, relativism, and permissiveness that has kept too many from outgrowing their infantile egocentricity and developing the character necessary to be socially responsible.
Recovering from gaslighting effects and regaining one’s sanity after an abusive relationship isn’t easy. Victims frequently mistrust themselves and worry about making the same relationship mistakes again. And getting the wrong kind of help can easily re-traumatize. Empowerment begins with understanding what really happened and why.
When we try too hard to understand we inadvertently revoke the power we have. Understanding can’t itself empower. Taking action empowers.
Manipulators and other disturbed characters are adept at playing the blame game. But when someone makes the injurious choice, it’s strictly on them. Thy may point the finger elsewhere and try to justify. But you empower yourself when you refuse to take on someone else’s rightful burden.
Rationalizing, or excuse making, is a manipulation tactic. The strategy is simple: get someone to buy into your “explanations,” and your behavior takes on a whole different light. Your intentions look less sinister. And you don’t look so bad in character. Wow! Do bad things, and look good doing them! Now, that’s quite a feat!
Manipulators like engaging in evasion and diversion because these tactics keep the spotlight off their behavior. There artful dance around the issues can help them stay one step ahead of you. That’s why it’s so important to confront their tactics head-on.
Some people fight in very surreptitious ways. The covert maneuvers they employ are effective. They throw others on the defensive while cloaking aggressive intent. You might suspect something is up but end up doubting yourself. You might even question your sanity. To restore your sanity you have to trust your gut.
Relationships naturally grow in strength, depth, and wholesomeness in the absence of character disturbance. And when our most important relationships are solid, we can expect the makings of a healthy community. It all starts with character.
For many, the holidays are a time of stress. But there are ways to beat the holiday blues and find the joy again. The secret’s in the spirit of the season.