Attachment Theory Conflict Resolution Personal Growth

Toxic Relationships and Conflict Resolution: Confrontation Or Corrosion? Growth Or Poison? Discerning the Difference In Relationships

“Wounds from a friend can be trusted, but an enemy multiplies kisses.”

Proverbs 27:6

Do we comprehend the difference between confrontation and corrosion? When it comes to relationships, strong and worthwhile ones can withstand healthy confrontation.

Confrontation is uncomfortable yet positively productive.

It leads to more growth, mutual understanding and all in all, a better relationship. Though it is temporarily uncomfortable, healthy and loving confrontation is not corroding to self or the relationship.

Weak relationships crumble at any sign of pressure or stress. This pressure which could be beneficial in the long run is mistaken for toxicity. A true friend will hear you out because they value you as a person. This is the opposite of selfishness. Real friends do not think only of themselves! They don’t think of you as a mere extension of themselves. They are not threatened by your honesty or feelings. They don’t love you for the sole reason that you make them “feel good” at all costs.

Toxic relationships corrode one or both individuals. Instead of addressing issues head on, one attacks the character of the other (gaslighting). This is damaging.

Recently, I was chatting with some friends of mine about this topic. Conflict in healthy relationships cannot equate with poison in toxic ones.

Many are deathly afraid of confrontation.

This stalls their personal growth as well as growth in a relationship. They excuse good relationships as “toxic”, a word that is too common these days. It’s often thrown around at the first sign of discomfort. They confuse personal discomfort with toxicity. We tend to like comfort in our lives and relationships at all costs. We avoid the hard conversations to make ourselves feel good. We stay in our protected bubble. In our ignorance and narrow views, we often lose relationships that could have been amazing. This is tragic!

It’s also a danger to ignore the warning signs of toxic relationships. We have the intuition to know when someone is trying to bring us down and destroy us as an individual, right? Any relationship that sucks the very life blood out of us and disables us from being valuable to our children, families and other friends…needs to go. For those of us who tend to see the good in people at our own expense, we may stay in a poisonous relationship (to our own detriment).

Relationships are supposed to be life-giving, and that includes uncomfortable yet positive growth.

Still, how often do we dismiss worthwhile relationships and keep poisonous ones?

Toxicity can come in subtle, disguised forms of poison.

We all have people in our lives who “multiply kisses” and overdose on the compliments as they try to make us feel “warm and fuzzy” all the time. These individuals avoid the hard conversations. Instead, they let conflict and their true feelings fester. Instead of addressing the issue one-to-one, they let gossip spread. They adhere to the “think positive” (i.e., sweep everything under the rug) movement at the expense of positive growth! This is corroding.

Could it be that these are well-disguised toxic relationships? As the saying goes, “Whoever rebukes a man will afterward find more favor than he who flatters with his tongue.”

They may not be good for us at all. These may be relationships that are covert poisons…ones that should expire.

In healthy relationships, the two parties value each other enough to confront with love.

Yep!

Their mutual respect leads them to engage in the difficult conversations.

When it comes to confrontation and corrosion, God forbid we confuse the two! It would be just as tragic to lose a good relationship thinking it is “toxic” as staying in a toxic relationship thinking it is “good.”

Every good relationship will go through testing from time to time. May we have the wisdom to discern between the tested ones worth fighting for and the corrosive ones worth leaving.

Xx Becky

Attached: The New Science of Adult Attachment and How It Can Help You Find – and Keep – Love by Dr. Amir Levine
“On Expired Relationships” by Eggshell Transformations

#toxicrelationships #narcissism #conflictresolution #bible #peace #love #communication #marriage #counseling #psychology #socialpsychology #Attachmenttheory #Amirlevine #eggshelltransformations #imilo

Gifted Adults, Gifted Children, Signs of Giftedness, Characteristics of gifted, IQ tests, IQ scores, SAT scores, ADHD, Intensity
Highly Sensitive Person (HSP)

11 Signs You Are a Gifted Adult: Intense, Empathic, Driven…Sound Like You?

Hi Lovely,
Have you ever felt like you are the odd duck? Do any or all of the eleven characteristics describe you?

  • You are your own worst critic even though others appreciate you and see good in you.
  • You are intense when you believe in a cause and you go after it with dogged tenacity.
  • Human injustice and suffering (even, violence on TV) deeply bother you more than they bother others.
  • You have felt like the odd duck, have felt lonely and introverted, even though you like people.
  • You question authority figures and challenge them when needed; hyper-authoritarianism is intolerable to you.
  • You have an interesting sense of humor and often people don’t get your jokes.
  • You get highly emotional (for example, you feel the emotions of sadness and joy deeply).
  • You are driven to create, create, create and are deeply moved by the arts.
  • You often know what people are feeling. You have a heightened empathic perception of emotions in others.
  • You get annoyed at too much useless, shallow, small talk.
  • You are sensitive to non-verbal communications, bright lights, and perhaps some sounds and smells.
If these don’t describe you, what about your child? Someone else you know?

Please note that portions of the above characteristics were found in an article by Dr. Eric Windhorst.* When reading Dr. Windhorst’s article, I couldn’t help but notice that every one of these characteristics apply precisely to some children I know as well as a musically talented friend.

Gifted adults, like gifted children, can experience any of the above characteristics. They don’t realize what they have. Many gifted adults go through life not knowing they are gifted. They lose focus and set aside their gifts when their focus could be used for something good. To be “gifted” doesn’t mean we would win on Jeopardy or that we aced our SAT tests. It doesn’t even mean we have extremely high IQ’s. As children, gifted adults often weren’t recognized as such by their parents. Many of these kids hated school to the core and were bad test takers.

Maybe they were thought of as “too emotional”, “too intense”, “too focused” or just plain “too much!”

This just in: There is nothing “wrong with you!”

Many gifted people develop this sense that there is something wrong with them. They develop a low self esteem and carry that around for life because those around them didn’t understand them. Maybe their families didn’t have the intellectual capacity to understand them. Out of the world’s top mathematicians, eighty percent of them had parents who were not gifted. Giftedness is not always genetic. Maybe they were teased or bullied by peers.

For the gifted person, instead of recognizing what they have, they often adopt the false belief (a lie) that they are horribly flawed. Their perfectionism doesn’t help either! Maybe they were misdiagnosed with a mental disorder when all that was ever “wrong” with them is that they are incredibly gifted and emotionally intelligent dynamos! Many of these gifted individuals develop social anxiety as they view themselves as “different” and don’t know why.

Gifted children, especially, need to know there is nothing “wrong” with them. They need extra hugs and assurance that they are spectacular pieces of art and are in no way flawed. Many of these kids have emotional tantrums of sorrow or rage and have trouble controlling them and returning to baseline. This, too, makes them feel different.

With love and assurance, they will grow up with a healthy self-understanding which will help them to focus on their gifts and view them as a blessing, not a curse.

Gifted adults need to wake up to the fact that there is nothing “wrong” with them! Does this sound like you? Maybe there was something “wrong” with the ones who didn’t “get” you. God knew what he was doing when he made us all a diverse bunch. Maybe we are all wired differently, and that is okay.

If this sounds like you, accept and appreciate your gifts, focus your intensity and use your gifts to make the world a better place for us all!

“I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.
Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.”
– Psalm 139:14

Inside Bill’s Brain: Decoding Bill Gates Netflix

Dr. Eric Windhorst Gifted Adult Characteristics

*Windhorst, Eric Ph.D. 2020. “Gifted Adult Characterisitics.” Accessed November 1, 2020. Retrieved from https://www.ericwindhorst.ca/resources/on_being_gifted/gifted-adult-characteristics/

Coercive-Control Groups Cult Expert Rick Ross Cult Warning Signs Spiritual Abuse Unsafe Group Warning Signs

10 WARNING SIGNS OF A POTENTIALLY UNSAFE GROUP OR LEADER BY RICK ROSS, EXPERT CONSULTANT AND INTERVENTION SPECIALIST

Potentially unsafe groups or leaders ‘come off very nice at first, they go for vulnerable people who are looking for answers, lonely, what you’d call ‘normal people.’ They’re very good at what they do and can get people to believe anything. You might think you’d never get taken in, but don’t bet on it.

– Margaret Singer, Ph.D.

Ten warning signs of a potentially unsafe group/leader

By Rick Ross, Expert Consultant and Intervention Specialist

  1. Absolute authoritarianism without meaningful accountability.
  2. No tolerance for questions or critical inquiry.
  3. No meaningful financial disclosure regarding budget, expenses such as an independently audited financial statement.
  4. Unreasonable fear about the outside world, such as impending catastrophe, evil conspiracies and persecutions.
  5. There is no legitimate reason to leave, former followers are always wrong in leaving, negative or even evil.
  6. Former members often relate the same stories of abuse and reflect a similar pattern of grievances.
  7. There are records, books, news articles, or television programs that document the abuses of the group/leader.
  8. Followers feel they can never be “good enough.”
  9. The group/leader is always right.
  10. The group/leader is the exclusive means of knowing “truth” or receiving validation, no other process of discovery is really acceptable or credible.
The author of this list, Rick Ross, gave me written permission on March 9, 2012. Please do not copy the contents of this article. Link sharing is permitted and/or sharing to https://culteducation.com/warningsigns.html
Full attribution: Ross, Rick. “Warning Signs.” Cult Education Institute. 1999-2014. Trenton, New Jersey. Accessed November 3, 2020. Retrieved from https://culteducation.com/warningsigns.html with permission.
monochrome photo of couple holding hands
Anxiety Cures Comfort With Suffering Coronavirus 2020 Depression Cures Featured Articles Loving Our Fellow Man Personal Growth

Depression, Stress, Isolation, Anxiety and Covid-19: Helping and Loving Others During the Coronavirus Pandemic

What does love look like? We all need to receive love. We are meant to give love. Humans are wired for love, connection and community. When it comes to helping and loving others, how are you doing?

When trials and tribulations shake up our world, including the current crisis with the Ukraine and Russia, some individuals tend to become more loving, and others…less loving. They either respond with empathy and care or selfishness and irritation with others. Sometimes, selfishness is rooted in a lack of love for others. Other times, irritation with others is rooted in trauma, depression, anxiety or other medical problems (for example, thyroid problems adversely affect the brain).

One day, a few weeks ago, I was at the grocery store when I encountered an angry stranger. I was on my way with my shopping cart to another aisle when a man confronted me with an angry face. He was mad that my cart contained an item which he wanted. This has never happened to me, but I understand these are peculiar times.

I smiled at him and told him he could have the item before he reached in my cart, grabbed it and scurried to the check out. Yes, he was inconsiderate. I started to think about it, and realized that we can never know what stress, anxiety and/or depression someone is encountering in his or her private life. Might as well love.

When it comes to helping and loving others, love never fails!

Just as it is easy to think only of oneself during stressful times, it’s also easy during times of crisis to compare. That is, to compare ourselves to others before judging them with our limited information. We might think, “Oh, they don’t have it so bad” or “Oh, their experience looks good…must be nice!” The judgments flow naturally because we are human and it’s easy to compare.

What does love look like? We can all benefit ourselves and others with these basic reminders about love.

Love is patient and kind. Love considers what others might need or want. That is, love considers what would brighten up someone else’s day. Love “suffers long” and copes with others, showing kindness even where it is undeserved.

Love does not envy, boast or brag. Love neither becomes jealous of what another has earned or been gifted, nor does love boast or brag (to make others become jealous, envious or inferior).

Love is neither arrogant nor proud. Love does not think too highly of oneself. Love does not judge rashly because rash and petty judgment comes from pride. It is prideful to think that we – in our limited knowledge – know what others are going through. Nobody can understand another human like God can, and nobody has all the information to judge appropriately. When it comes to knowing people fully, we see the mere tip of the iceberg.

Love is not rude or resentful. Love does not resent others if they are doing well or on a different path. Love thinks before it speaks. Love includes others, not showing discrimination. Love does not make one feel drained, hurt, inferior, used or unaccepted. Love does not steal what belongs to someone else. Rather, love considers others…making them feel accepted, cared for, refreshed, appreciated, affirmed, safe, motivated and encouraged (love also tells the truth with care and kindness, even if the truth is unpleasant).

Wishing you a day of joy, peace and most of all…love. You are loved. How can you take action in the next few days to actively show love in a practical way? Now is a good time to show, give and receive love.

How are you using your time to love others?

Xx Becky

“Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends.” 1 Corinthians 13:7,8

This is my new coaching website!  I would appreciate you if you would simply like and share my post so that others can be helped and comforted during these hard times.  Thank you. 

Anxiety Cures Coronavirus 2020 Featured Articles

3 Simple Ways To Cope With Information Overload and Overwhelm During the Coronavirus Pandemic

Have you felt overwhelmed lately?  A few days ago, someone I know and love was becoming depressed with information overload.  The bad news keeps rolling in on news channels, and some channels are worse than others.  Some of the news is fact-based and important to know…some not. 

Then, today, I spoke with someone who told me she felt invigorating and energized after turning off the non-stop news stream for one week. 

What we consume truly affects our states of mind and our energy levels.  What we consume affects how valuable we can be to others. It’s not that easy to focus these days, but it can be done.  

First, embrace what I call a “controlled ignorance.”  This is not the same as carelessness or an irresponsible apathy.  In fact, if you know me personally, you know that I am likely the least apathetic person you know!  I love researching and getting all the facts.  Instead, what this means is consuming enough facts and information, but only enough to be a great citizen and helpful to others.  In other words, this means being well-informed with the facts, but not to the point we are drowning in fear, tossing and turning by mixed news messages.  Again, this is neither “ignorance is bliss” nor is it a harmful apathy.  

There is a difference between being beneficially informed about a subject and being weighed down all day about it.  Having an excess of needless information won’t lend to the solution, and it will only cause more anxiety and ultimately, family harm.  For example, gathering the stats on the daily death rates for every state across the country and announcing it to the family is not helpful if this means ignoring our families all day long.  Our children need us during this time!  Loads of needless information take away value and energy that we could be adding to our own lives and to others.  Talking endlessly in circles – hours after hours – with our buddies about information neither lends to the solution nor does it make our children and other family members feel loved or safe during this time.  Yes, we do need information, but this could end up looking something like the law of diminishing returns when it comes to information consumption.  Lately, I refuse to have my thoughts and focus dictated by others – people in power – with political and personal agendas.

Second, add value to your life, your family members’ or your friends’ lives.  In whatever way you can.  When our minds are filled with thoughts of how we can help ourselves or others, there is not much room for useless information.  What fills the space in your mind?  The space in our minds is valuable real estate, yet how often do we give this “precious land” away to thoughts and to people that do not matter?  What information and message are we putting into the lives of those around us (our children, spouse, friends, etc.)?  Do people feel fearful or hopeful after they speak with you?  Do they feel life when around us? 

Adding value can come in many forms.  Simple ways to add value to your own life and others’ lives are to go for a walk or run, make a healthy dinner, send a thoughtful message to someone or buy something calming for someone.  I recently sent several of my friends some calming, chemical-free, lead-free candles (from my favorite candle store, http://www.enlightencandlesarizona.com).  How can you show someone love in a practical way?  People need love right now.  Check out my previous article on loving during these hard times.  You have the power to add value and blessing into someone else’s life.  Perhaps this comes through words, actions or giving.

Finally, maintain a future focus.  Focus, especially a future focus, helps ease information overload in the present.  Allow yourself to dream, too.  Dream of that future vacation you always wanted and the task you wanted to accomplish.  Writing down future goals and what you want to focus on also helps.  It helps to solidify our focus.  As for the immediate future, what do you want to do tonight?  It can be motivating for ourselves, our children and others in our families to have something fun or different to look forward to each day.  It can also be motivating to set a goal.  It is rewarding when we accomplish a task like finishing an organizational project or completing a creative endeavor.  Regarding focus, if you are not choosing what to focus on, others will gladly waste it for you.  Take your focus back!

Limiting what information you allow in your life, adding value to your own and others’ lives and maintaining a future focus are great ways to cope with information overload.  Onward! 

Xx Becky

This is my new coaching website!  I would appreciate you if you would simply like and share my post so that others can be helped and comforted during these hard times.  Thank you.