Yes You Can!

Being a teacher/instructor in the computer industry for many years one of the most common thing I heard from people was “I just don’t think I can ever learn to even use a computer”.  By the time the class was over, be it hours, days or weeks, their attitude had changed.  Not only did they learn what they needed to about computers, but I allowed everyone of my students to have the knowledge that they could do anything they wanted to IF they put their mind to it.  They could be successful in any position of their choice.  And in fact, the same could be applied to their personal lives as well.

“Can’t never could do anything”, my dad always said.  He taught me that I could do anything that I wanted to, if I put my mind to it.  But in spite of his words, I had a very rough road.  It wasn’t easy.  I had a lot of things going against me.  My teenage years were very turbulent to say the least.  My early adulthood was far from ideal.  I was a high school drop out.  A college drop out.  I kept getting myself into situations and relationships that were very destructive for me.  My self esteem was on empty.  I felt doomed and many, many times wondered how I would ever get to where I wanted to be in life.  I wasn’t even exactly sure of where I wanted to be in life, but I knew I wasn’t there.

In my early life suicide was like a shadow looming over me.  My life sucked!  I had no idea how to fix it.  I hit rock bottom a good number of times.  So, I’m not one of those people who just had everything good.  It just doesn’t work that way.  If I had not of been through what I have, I would not have learned a thing.  I made bad choices.  Often, there was no choice.  So, life sucks.  Most of us don’t get things the easy way.  We get our hopes up… only to be let down.  Over and over again.  How in the world could you continue to hope for anything better?

There is a learning curve.  We are not always taught how to mentally prepare ourselves to be successful.  Sure, my father implanted some pretty encouraging words when I was young.  But he was also one of the parts of my life that was destructive during very impressionable years of my life.  It doesn’t help that I was a daughter and had an older brother that seemed to have much more in common with my father.  My mother wasn’t a very successful woman herself… finding herself in minimum paying jobs and very controlling relationships.  To a point, I simply refused to be like my mother.  But there was much, much more to it than that.  In fact, I was programmed to be just like my mother.  That’s what was expected after all.

It took me a long time to learn and to get to where I am now.  I am not like my father or my mother, or even my brother.  I am me.  And I had to learn how to be “me” and to be comfortable in being who I am.  Being comfortable with who I am required that I accept who I was and to learn to form who I will be in the future.  No one ever stays completely the same.  It’s an ever evolving changing thing.  Environmental elements tend to play a big part of who we will become.  How we use those elements will determine if we grow into a better, happier, person or if we allow life to kick us around.

I hope that you will join me.  I can not guarantee anything.  What I can promise you is that you can learn what I learned to do.  How I learned.  Why I learned.  And become the person with the career that you want.  And yes, I incorporate careers in with personal lives.  If you think that your career can’t or won’t affect your life, you are wrong.  You can keep work at work… but it still affects you.  You experience your work just as you would experience anything else in your life… it is a significant part of your life.  It will not be easy, I will also tell you that.  Some days you may hate me.  I am not a doctor or therapist of any kind.  I am a human who has been there.

If you have no interest in improving your life… this blog site is not for you.

Are you ready to get real?

  1. Pity Parties

    • Some people like to wallow in self pity.  The “Poor Me” syndrome.  Often times it can be brought on by a mental disorder, but not always.  It’s when people go through periods of time[...]
    • Some people like to wallow in self pity.  The “Poor Me” syndrome.  Often times it can be brought on by a mental disorder, but not always.  It’s when people go through periods of time where they can think of only bad things in their life.  Not to be confused with clinical depression, these people will act it out even on social media strictly to gain sympathy from others.  They are seeking attention in this manner.

      Generally, these folks are not “called out” for what they are doing.  Instead of holding their feet to the fire and making them stop wallowing in pity for themselves and asking pity from others, people general find it easier to just give them what they want and move on… and the next time… and the next time… and on and on.

      These people want others to feel sorry for them.  Usually, no matter what you say there will be a come back of something bad.  An excuse.  Or something worse.  You’ll hear or see “I can’t” a lot.  If you are one to get stuck in such a pity party, stop doing it.  If you get sucked in once, they can and will seek you out again for the same “fix”.

      I personally have been a member of online groups and forums for self help and saw it all of the time.  Nothing really ever seemed to help some people.  They just wanted the attention.  I finally had to stop going to such groups and forums as they provided no real solutions to problems and issues… they just provided pity.  I am in no way saying their aren’t good groups and forums out there for help.  I’m just stating my own experience.

      If you find that you do dwell too much in your self pity, please, for your own sake… stop.  Look around you.  Dwelling in self pity is a very destructive tendency and will not benefit you at all.  Look at what is good in your life and concentrate on that.  Seeking out others for help can be helpful IF the support you are given is good solid support and moves you out of your self destructive tendency to require attention to it.  And don’t confuse it with venting.  Venting is something entirely different.  A pity party is performed more than once or twice… it’s not “letting go” of anything like venting is.  It’s done to have others feel sorry for you and to get attention.  And it’s not healthy.  The kind of attention you get usually is not going to help you.

      Life does suck sometimes.  But, you have to look for the good.  Focus on the good parts of your life.  Letting yourself slide into a state that requires you to seek attention for your woes is not the answer.  I’m not saying that you shouldn’t talk about things that you feel are wrong in your life with the appropriate person that can actually help you.  I’m saying don’t use it to get attention.

      Use mental self talk… in your thoughts tell yourself things that are good about yourself and your life.  If you think about it, you will find many things that are good!  You don’t need the attention of others to feel good about yourself.  Don’t make it a requirement.

      Mental disorder or not… it’s up to you to change destructive behavior.

  2. To Argue or Not To Argue

    • One of the biggest sources of friction comes from arguing or confrontations.  Personally, I distinguish between arguments and confrontations in that arguments tend to start with a disagreement and esc[...]
    • One of the biggest sources of friction comes from arguing or confrontations.  Personally, I distinguish between arguments and confrontations in that arguments tend to start with a disagreement and escalate, confrontations are preplanned arguments that start with hostility and friction.  Arguments, as I stated, start off as a disagreement but escalate when one or more opinions continued to conflict.  Voices get louder to be heard over others.  Anger eventually follows.  An argument or confrontation can evolve to an all out fight.  Either way, the the results are the same.

      When interacting with other people, it is natural that not all people are going to agree on everything.  Before you allow yourself to participate in an argument, ask yourself a few questions… Is it worth it?… Had you rather be happy or right?… In the end, is there really a winner of an argument?

      Arguing is probably the most destructive form of interaction you will have with other people.  There never is a real winner in an argument.  Words are thrown back and forth that can’t be taken back, ever.  You or the other person or people may apologize, but you never forget.  Whatever words are put out there verbally, written, in text… however, can NEVER be erased.  Not to mention the mere act of arguing is extremely stressful and can often lead to abusive behavior.  Arguing is just destructive for everyone involved.

      There are people that must argue… like an addiction.  They thrive on confrontation.  They seek out people.  They say things to intentionally spur on an argument.  They are addicted to the drama and the adrenaline.  They feel they must make themselves look superior in some way to other people.  The primary reason this is done actually is to try to prove to themselves that their intellect is what they think it is or want it to be.  So, given the opportunity a person of this nature will jump in and disagree so strongly that an argument will be the result because they are so determined that they are right… therefore, things must be set right.  It’s a lack of self confidence.  They have something they must prove to people AND themselves.

      The best thing you can do is learn to not argue.  If someone is trying to instigate an argument with you, pushing your buttons… don’t let them.  Do not engage them.  It is self destructive behavior.  If you feel you can not or will not be able to control your emotions and that you would be sucked into an argument either shut your mouth and focus mentally one something else or get up and leave.

      When I was learning not to argue with an obsessive arguer it was hard.  I started off telling myself I was not going to raise my voice, no matter what.  I got yelled out, screamed at.  I learned to keep my voice low.  I would not let myself scream back.  At times, this meant I had to find a focal point, something other than the other person to stare at.  A spoon, a pillow, something.  Concentrating on keeping my voice low and in control.  If that did not diffuse the situation I just quietly sat there.  Keeping a focal point.  Allowing the other person to get as angry and loud as they wished.  But I kept myself in check.  I refused to argue.  Concentrated on keeping my breathing calm.  Kind of like I was just watching TV or something.  I was told that my refusing to argue was very annoying.  And at times it did seem to irritate the other person worse… but that was not my fault.  That was their own fault for not controlling their own emotions.

      In my situation, I did not have the choice of getting up and leaving to go outside or into another room.  I would be followed.  Initially, I had started getting in my car and leaving for a few hours to allow the other person to cool off.  But then my car keys would disappear.  And in a way… it actually worked out for the best.  I learned if you avoid an argument by leaving often you’re just avoiding the issue(s) and it teaches you nothing but avoidance.  If you stay and learn to keep yourself in control and keep your cool even when someone is in your face… you learn a great deal of self control.  When you learn to control yourself in situations like this, when you look back and realize what you did, you will feel proud of yourself… and you should be.

      When I first started not arguing back, the other person did try harder and harder and harder… even going to extreme levels of anger… to try to get a reaction out of me.  But the more I persisted on not arguing, eventually, the person stopped trying so hard.  The more it happened.  The more times I went through keeping my self control, the easier it became.  Eventually, the person could not lead me into an argument no matter what they did.  And guess what… it flows over into your life and you can control yourself in most any argumentative situation.  Now, I’m not saying you will never get into an argument ever again in your life… but it will dramatically decrease them and enable you to have control.

      In reality, the people who learn to discuss things in a respectful manner… not arguing.  Even, if you don’t or can’t agree.  But not allowing an argument to occur are much more stable and have a great deal of self control.  Allow other people to have their opinions and beliefs, agree to disagree, but respect others.  In the long run, you will gain more self respect and the respect of others.

      Confrontations and arguments can also stem from pain, deception or other emotional instigation inflicted on a person.  It could be that a person has been hurt and tries to control it or lets it fester or stew … and it eventually comes to a head and they have to say something.  This is a different type of situation.  First, yes, the person should probably have not have taken the course that they did, by letting it fester.  However, controlling this type of situation should be done with empathy… especially if you are the one that inflicted the pain.  Put yourself in their shoes.  Look at things from their perspective.  See why they feel what they feel.  Do it in the same calm, collective manner.  Don’t argue back.  Provide empathy and comfort.  Remain calm.  Someone who feels pain generally has a reason.  If there is a mental disorder involved… I will be working on an entirely different section for that.  But do try to understand that there may be a chemical imbalance causing it.  Regardless, the same rule applies, the way a person reacts is totally their own responsibility.  Just as an example:  A spouse cheats… the other spouse finds out and is terribly hurt.  A person who does not have control will probably react in an extremely argumentative state.  A person who does have control will calmly state that they know, probably kick the other to the curb and move on.

      I can honestly say that in previous relationships I had, arguing was at least probably at least a once a month thing (at times a few times a week).  After gaining my self control and removing myself from hostile environments that would never change… living with my current husband, we don’t argue.  I believe we’ve only argued for like maybe 3 minutes possibly twice in 5 years.  We calmly, collectively, and respectfully discuss things.  We do not allow our tempers to flare.  We keep self control.  We respect each other.

      It can be done.  This is a MAJOR step.  It is perhaps one of the MOST important steps you will take in changing your life.  Imagine a life free of the stress of yelling, screaming, tempers… etc.  It can happen.  You have to make a choice not to argue… stick with it.  It will eventually become more of the normal for you and your natural reaction will be no real reaction to argumentative situations.  Your brain will fire differently… certain chemicals will not be released as a result.


  3. In The Beginning…

    • From the time you are born your family members will play a crucial roll in your development and how you perceive things about the world, including yourself.  This primarily includes people who are clo[...]
    • From the time you are born your family members will play a crucial roll in your development and how you perceive things about the world, including yourself.  This primarily includes people who are closest to you on a regular basis.  Your childhood will play a huge part in how you feel about yourself and how you see yourself.  Now, I am in no way saying anything is your family’s fault.  They have had the most influence on you, but still it is up to you to determine how you see yourself and the world around you now.

      As a child, there is little that you can do about it, but as an adult, it is 100% in your lap.  It is not your family’s fault even though they may have had the biggest influence that caused you to perceive things the way that you do and you may have learned from them how to react in certain ways.  When you become an adult, you are your own biggest responsibility.  If things need to be changed, it is up to you to change them.  Not your family.  You can not give the responsibility for anything you do or feel to someone else, literally, it’s a choice you make.

      There probably isn’t a person alive that can say they had the perfect childhood and mean it.  We aren’t born with an instruction manual.  Two or more children growing up in the same household can have totally different perceptions and see themselves differently.  Parents may try to treat all children the same as much as they can.  But each child will develop a different personality.  One will eat their peas, the other may not.  So, it is highly likely that two children raised together in the same household will grow differently.  Have different outlooks on things.  React to situations differently…. etc.  However, there may also be similarities to a degree.

      There are varying degrees of how “bad” of a childhood every person had.  Some are serious conditions consisting of physical or mental abuse.  Growing up in poverty.  And possibly having parents that just aren’t there.  So, giving that there is such a wide variety of variables that can affect us during childhood, I believe it fairly safe to say that most think it sucked in some way.

      Right here, right now… you must accept your own baggage.  You can no longer lay blame or point fingers to who’s fault it is that you’re the way you are.  You own it.  It’s yours.  So you may hoard ill feelings about particular things that happened that you really need to let your family know you feel were wrong.  It’s okay to do that, ONCE.  Gather your feelings, get it down on paper if you have to because you have one shot at this.  Try to be tactful, but be honest.  Get it out.  Once you get it out, you are heard, move on.  Even if no one agrees with you.  The second thing you have to do, is to learn to move on.  As long is you dwell on things and bring up old issues you will never be able to move forward.  You have to move forward.

      I can not stress or say this enough, you can not expect anyone to change how they think or feel about anything.  Like you, it is up to them.  You own what you do, but they own what they do.  If there is a situation where a person is not a positive in your life, you may need to distance yourself or remove them from your life.  And move on…

      Regardless of what your childhood did consist of, it is up to you now.  Your parents weren’t perfect… and neither are you.