I didn’t notice at first. In fact, it wasn’t even an issue in the early days.
Okay, okay. People can say the wrong thing when they are angry or emotional.
I get it. I have done the same in the past. I am far from perfect and have had an outburst (or two, or more) where I have said something and regretted it. I may have regretted it straight away or after the some time. But I did have remorse.
Words can be hurtful and, as much as we try to convince ourselves that they shouldn’t, they cut deeper than any physical wound ever could.
I’ve also been on the receiving end more times than I care to remember.
I’d tell myself that they were having a bad day and they didn’t mean to call me that/tell me that.
I’d tell myself that they didn’t comprehend what they were saying.
I’d tell myself that they were just mimicking what they had heard. Just repeating it, to test it out.
I’d tell myself that they would stop soon, after they calmed down.
I’d tell myself that they were ‘just’ words.
I’d tell myself that they would apologise later, so that must be ‘ok’.
I got used to it. Like we all do, I suppose. You hear or see the same thing week after week, month after month and we stop to notice. It becomes the norm.
I’m not sure when I started to believe the words. I don’t think there was a defining moment at all. It was a gradual realisation that the words must be true because they were my reality now.
I saw people doing cool things in their lives and would think to myself, ‘Gosh, they are so lucky!’
I would see people endeavouring to achieve their goals and think, ‘They have so much self-confidence, they must have been born with it!’
I saw people have amazing relationships with others and think, ‘They have it so easy!’
I couldn’t do that.
I couldn’t be that.
I couldn’t see that happening.
I couldn’t be ‘that’ person.
But really, looking back…I had just forgotten.
I remember thinking to myself, ‘My daughter can do anything she wants in life. She has more opportunity than me. She can set her goals high and go get them! She can absolutely do this. There is no question of this.’
Then I thought, ‘Actually, no – she can’t because kids model our behaviour. They absolutely do. Without even without realising it.’
How can she reach the stars with her dreams if her Mum doesn’t (or can’t or won’t)?
How can she achieve greatness if her Mum believes that she is worthless?
How can she claim her life as her own, if her Mum doesn’t?
So I said, ‘Enough.’
I decided that I would have standards. That I would value ME.
I decided that by having a standard, she would get the chance to achieve her greatness.
Who gives a toss if someone is having a bad day/insert excuses here. No-one has the right to talk to another person like that.
The more they spoke and I said stop, the more they did it.
The more they did it, the more my standard lifted.
The more they spoke complete sh*t, the more I learnt about them.
The more they tested my standard, the stronger it became.
Yes, it got messy.
I didn’t want my child to think it was normal to name-call.
I didn’t want my child to think it was normal to blame.
I didn’t want my child to think that by getting angry, spiteful and nasty – that you get your own way.
I wanted my child to have standards.
I wanted my child to take responsibility for her actions.
I wanted my child to value herself.
I wanted my child to achieve her dreams.
My worst nightmare would be for her to think that it’s ‘ok’ to be spoken to in a negative way because it’s so not!
The standards I live by make me who I am today. Yes, I may swear in my books – but you will find that the words are never directed at a particular person or thing. They are just there for effect and I know they work.
These standards mean I stand up for myself and it doesn’t matter who tries to put me down – I will walk away because they are non-negotiable.
I will always accept apologies. I will always love back. And yes, I make heaps of mistakes too.
So, my friend – what are your standards and how do you live by them? What are your non-negotiables?
By the way, it’s totes ok if you haven’t thought about this sh*t before. I hadn’t either and it’s never too late, in my opinion.
So make a start. Make the choice. Decide on your standards. Value YOU.
Because, quite honestly, us humans don’t value ourselves quite enough. Especially women. I won’t go into why and all the history/finger pointing today…it really is a fact. Women are undervalued and when you look at it logically, it’s super crazy as we are so powerful! We actually create eyeballs and sh*t inside our stomachs! Madness, I say!
And you know what? It will get messy when you realise what your standard is. People around you will get ruffled and, quite possibly, you will lose relationships. Wouldn’t you rather have supportive and loving people around you, though? I can’t be the only one here who wants that.
So just remember – this is your life. Your time. You get to make your own standards. Don’t lower them for anyone.
P.S It’s coming this week! My new website www.mytimemylife.com.au is nearly to launch! Stay tuned for the launch and the special BONUS’s I will be offering. I am wee bit excited! #mytimemylife