Today’s Top 3 Things I Would Like to Tell My Daughter Going into Adulthood:
1. There are always going to be people out there who want to “push your buttons”. Don’t let them. And just as importantly, don’t BE them. No one wants to live their life in a constant struggle with someone else. Not even if ‘occasionally when the mood hits’ is pretty routine and becomes predictable. Marriages, friendships, and even family bonds are ruined this way, either by conscious decision or by default. You never need to put up with it. You also can squelch it by not reacting to it. The people who are combative *want* to get a rise out of you. As long as they do, they will continue — it’s a component of their personality that this is the method in which they choose to relate with people. If they consistently get the same non-response from you, they will eventually move along to someone they can ruffle and make want to pull their hair out. It is a simple debunking of their cause and effect. This may upset them more and rile them harder, but eventually they will gas out. However, what I want you to know is that you don’t have to take it. Ever. People need to be responsible for the energy they bring to your space, and if they can’t bring positive energy — or at least mature, dignified energy — than it is up to you to remove it. This is no way to live. No one wants to be with or around someone they’re always worried about upsetting; to walk on eggshells in their own personal relationships. Nor do they want to keep grinning and bearing someone’s incessant mood swings, even if we have that calm core that allows us to let it roll off our backs. Sometimes this kind of behavior is unbeknownst to the person who dishes is out, but often times it is a result of control, or a mental instability, or just that some people seek certain pleasure out of domination and/or conflict. There are a lot of people in this world who have underlining negativity that they hold onto to stay negative. (Sounds asinine, I know, but people CAN become addicted to their misery.) They feel negative on the inside, so that is what they bring to the table — if they’re not happy than no one can be. You ALWAYS can be. Surround yourself with someone who avoids your buttons the way that you avoid eggshells, and not out of fear but love and respect.
2. With all of this said, I am not telling you to be a pacifist. In spite of how I manage myself in *some* situations, I am very far from a pacifist. I will go to the ends of the earth to defend and stand up for someone I find deserving. You should always stand strong for what you believe in. I determine where my boundaries are, and they are different for each individual person and circumstance. I determine whether or not a person’s actions are just too ridiculous to entertain and when that line has been crossed that no matter who they are, it is time for me to lay down my law. Being the bigger person is never being a pushover. It’s a power within you that the other person lacks. But if that other person oversteps, no matter who they are, they must be told (and sometimes more firmly than we ever should be put in the position to do). And by ALL MEANS, if exercising the “Walk Away” doesn’t work — after you’ve sternly put your foot down — and you feel threatened, you must do what you must do. I had to defend myself more times than I should have in the past. I earned the nickname “Scrappy” because of it, but you can never make lightly of the fact that someone attempts to harm you or violate you — you MUST protect yourself, and you MUST know how. (However old you are right now while you’re reading this, this is why I had you take a self defense class in your teens and 20s.) The bottom line is that the people who can’t touch you, can’t push you to hurt them back; but if a boundary is drawn and they cross it, than you have to decide what cross you’re both going to bear. My advice would be to save all your strength and energy for the real convictions, and use all your courage to IGNORE all that other nonsense and noise. Walk away, but never turn your back away. Then, if someone gets in your face, they either need to back down or be put down on their posterior. Protect yourself.
3. Don’t save the good soap. In other words, life is short — use the good china; drive instead of fly, but *take* the vacation; don’t save anything for a special occasion; don’t save the fancy soaps for guests, etc., etc.! The time is now. No one knows what the future holds and today’s self has the same worth as tomorrow’s. If opportunity calls, don’t miss it to stay home and clean the house. If yesterday was a total waste of perfume, make today a day that doesn’t stink. If it rained all week and today’s the only sunny day you’ve had, but you’re so behind on the To Do List, what’s another day?! ALWAYS arrive to your responsibilities. NEVER sell someone out. FOREVER put your child/ren first. BUT, don’t keep pushing the “Good Life” things to a later day. You never know when that later date is too late. Life is for the living — in the here & now — so don’t spend *so* much time planning for the future that you have an unforgettable today. Think of how many times you haven’t felt real well, but you got up and out and about and did something enjoyable, then weeks to months to years down the road you reflect fondly on that day. Do you even remember you had a headache, or your stomach was a little off, or you didn’t get enough sleep the night before -OR- that your house was a mess, there was a load of laundry still sitting in the dryer, or that you really should have caught up on some correspondence? Chances are, no. You’ll never remember WHEN you used the good soap, but you’ll never forget that lovely bath.
… And, oh… I love you more than galore!
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~ Heather Angelika
Founder/Owner of Gallant Girls