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Question
Posted by: Frustrated | 2010/07/08

I take things personally

Being a psychology major I feel silly asking this question but I can''t seem to change my way of thinking.

I take everything personally  not so much in respect of people criticising my appearance, home or work - that I am fine wth. I have trouble particularly with my husband. If he says he will or won''t do domething and then does the opposite, I feel personally betrayed.

The two most recent episodes are him saying he has quit smoking and then smoking every ''now and then'' (within a month of quitting) - basically he has cut down but not quit. It was his desire to stop, not mine. I met him as a smoker and accepted that. But if he says he is going to quit, I expect him to do just that.

The second incident was with him starting to play sport again. It was an integral part of his life before we met ad he always spoke of returning. I supported him and encouraged him, and he went to one session and then didn''t go back again.

He says he is human and will make mistakes - I kow we all do - but his " mistakes"  seem like excuses to me. In both these instances I felt betrayed.

I know this is my issue, not his  I also know that I put his happiness before mine and this is why I feel betrayed. But how do I change it?

After one of these incidents I can go for a few hours, sometimes days, without feeling upset and then all of a sudden it all comes bubbling out.

I know what the problem is, I just don''t kow how to change it.

Thank you.

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Curious. Its understandable that many people feel easily hurt about criticism of their appearance or behaviour - but you seem to be saying that while that doesn't bother you. But you are apparently greatly bothered when someone else doesn't do what they said they would do, even though this is obviously not your fault at all ?
Smoking is indeed very difficult to give up, and I'd gree with Purple's quote, that it can be harder to stop than heroin addictions. Most people who try to stop fail a few times before they succeed. So its not useful to greatly blame him for a failure to do so - and still less, not to blame yourself. You can't give it up for him.
He surely didn't choose not to give up, simply to betray you ? I hope in your studies you are exploring methods like Cognitive-Behaviour Therapy, which can help one to change unfruitful and unhelpful habits of thought

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5
Our users say:
Posted by: Happiness | 2010/07/08

I''ve actually proven what Lizard is saying to be true. I used to resent my husband for not realising his full potential. How good he was at work but was settling for less. I would tell him and expect him to change. After a while of no success in changing him I decided to focus on me. Wow there was a lot to be done. Whatever weakness I saw in him was exactly what was my own weakness. I eventually became more emotionally independent and he also noticed the change!

Reply to Happiness
Posted by: lizard | 2010/07/08

how to change it :

Your point of veiw is somethng personal to you,
. It is no one''s truth but yours. Then, if you get mad at me, I know you are dealing with yourself. I am the excuse for you to get mad. And you get mad because you are afraid, because you are dealing with fear. If you are not afraid, there is no way you will get mad at me. If you are not afraid there is no way you will hate me. If you are not afraid , there is no way you will be jealous or sad.
If you live without fear, if you love, there is no place for any of those emotions, it is logical that you will feel good. When everything around you is great, everything makes you happy. You are loving everything that is around you, because you are loving yourself. Because you like the way you are. because you are content with you. Because you are happy with your life .

As you make a habbit of not taking anything personally, you wont need to place your trust in what others do or say. You will only need to trust yourself to make responsible choices . You are
never responsible for the actions of others, you are only responsible for you. When you truely undersatnd this, and refuse to take things personally, you can hardly be hurt by the careless comments or actions of others.

Reply to lizard
Posted by: lizard | 2010/07/08

What causes you to be trapped is called " personal importance" .
Personal importance, or taking things personally, is the maximum expression of selfishness because we make the assumption that everything is about " me''. During the period of our education, or our domestication, we learn to take everything personally. We think we are responsable for everything. Me, me, me always me!
Nothing other people do is because of you. It is because of themselves. When we take something personally, we make the assumption that they know what is in our world, and we try to impose our world on their world. When you take things personally, then you feel offended, and your reaction is to defend your beliefs and create conflicts. You make something big out of something so little, because you have the need to be right and make everyone else wrong . You also try hard to be right by giving them your own opinions. In the same way, whatever you feel and do is just a projection of your own personal dream, a reflection of your own personal dream, a reflection of your own agreements.

Reply to lizard
Posted by: Purple | 2010/07/08

Are you perhaps over analysing everything about your feelings because of your field of study? Sometimes a banana is just a banana? LIke a medical student who for a while thinks that they and their family all suffer from dread diseases.

Personally though, I feel let down when someone makes a promise and then doesn''t keep it - that''s flaky behaviour and I battle to trust the person completeley until they prove me wrong.
Having given up smoking more than once before kicking the habit for good 7 years ago, it is really difficult and you do go back to it a few times - it is an addictive drug and just because you know you should give up and want to doesn''t mean you can stick to it, I" ve heard that more people successfully stay off herioin (about 2% success rate) than off nicotine.

Reply to Purple
Posted by: cybershrink | 2010/07/08

Curious. Its understandable that many people feel easily hurt about criticism of their appearance or behaviour - but you seem to be saying that while that doesn't bother you. But you are apparently greatly bothered when someone else doesn't do what they said they would do, even though this is obviously not your fault at all ?
Smoking is indeed very difficult to give up, and I'd gree with Purple's quote, that it can be harder to stop than heroin addictions. Most people who try to stop fail a few times before they succeed. So its not useful to greatly blame him for a failure to do so - and still less, not to blame yourself. You can't give it up for him.
He surely didn't choose not to give up, simply to betray you ? I hope in your studies you are exploring methods like Cognitive-Behaviour Therapy, which can help one to change unfruitful and unhelpful habits of thought

Reply to cybershrink

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