I remember a time in my life when I couldn’t let things go. I could hold a grudge for years if I felt I was wronged in some way. The way I kept my negative emotions going is by telling and re-telling the stories of how I was wronged by someone. Each time I relived the story, it got worse and worse as did my emotion to it.
One year my husband had something happen between himself and his boss which sparked my life-long grudge issue. It wasn’t even something that was about me but it effected me in a big way. I was furious. I was angry. And I was out for revenge!
Fast forward several years and my husband wanted to have a house warming party and suggested inviting everyone we knew. We both created our own lists and then compared the overall master list. There it was. Plain as day. The old boss’s name was on my husband’s list. I proclaimed in a queenly type of way,
“That man is not allowed in my house. EVER!”
To my husband, the memory of the event with his ex-boss had long been forgotten. It was deep in his unconscious, in long-term storage. For me, it was still in Random Access Memory. I was still living it. Over three years had passed and I still hadn’t let go of the incident. I refused to allow my husband to invite him to the party nor allow him to ever set foot in my house. Why???
#10 People are not their Behaviors
When I took my NLP Practitioner Course, I learned a pretty hard lesson which took me years to accept and even longer to use. People are not their behaviors. It is part of the presuppositions of NLP. My husband’s boss wasn’t his behavior. He was a guy in a position which he didn’t want to be in and had to do something he didn’t want to do. He was still a nice guy. He was still honest and respectful and a good man all around. It was the behavior I didn’t like. It was the actions he took that were really bothering me all those years.
If it was any other person with the same behavior, I would have still been upset. The behavior is independent of the person. The behavior sucks. The person is just doing the best job they can with the resources they have available.
Once I learned that, I could forgive. Once I grasped that I could keep boundaries around behaviors and still interact with the people with the bad behaviors, I elevated myself about the constant story telling and re-telling that allowed me to stay stuck in my own dramas. People are not their behaviors – it’s very freeing, isn’t it?
How about one last bonus tip?
Here are some other posts in the same series you may want to explores: Tip #1 Chunk Size, Tip #2 Submodalities , Tip #3 Metamodel, Tip #4 Presuppositions, Tip #5 Frame of Reference, Tip #6 Complex Equivalents, Tip #7 Outcomes, Tip #8 Re-program, Tip #9 Self Hypnosis
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