Over the years I have started noticing a few things about myself. One of the things I noticed is that I am either going to be really quiet when something is bothering me or I will fight tooth and nail if it is something I am really bothered by. I am a really defensive person when I feel as if I am being attacked, when I am wrong and don’t want to admit I am, and when I just want to get my point across. Now it’s the latter three that has caused some problems in my house. I lost my ability to just walk away, hear a person out, and just say okay. For some reason I just have to fight about just about everything. I mean it has gotten to the point where my husband had to tell me that he doesn’t exactly feel comfortable talking to me. That of course isn’t something that I want.
So knowing that is something I need to work on I have been trying to be more intentional in how I react to certain situations. I want my husband to know that he can come to me with a problem and not worry about me biting his head off. Which I have to admit that I have done. I haven’t been receptive to criticism for awhile. I of course think this goes back to my childhood of being bullied. But I am an adult now so I should actually be able to accept and receive it. I just don’t like being told I did something wrong. I don’t know a person who likes it. But even when I am caught red handed instead of admitting it I will try to explain why I did it and convince whoever I am talking to why I did it. I really don’t want to be that person anymore. I don’t want people to be scared to talk to me or not want to talk to me. It bothers me that people feel that way especially my spouse. It kind of hurts to know that I pushed him that far. But I know to undo things that I have been doing for more than 20 years I have to figure out a way to change things.
One thing I have been doing is practicing listening to what my husband is saying fully and intentionally. Sometimes at the end of the conversation I will apologize and others I will just say okay. I feel like this is a way of letting him know that I heard what he said and it will also give me time to process what he said without flying off the handle. I have been trying it for about a week now and it seems to work. When I took a moment to process what was said I could feel myself really recognizing where I was wrong in a situation or something that I can acknowledge that I need to work on. I am realizing that there is no need to be defensive in every situation and it’s okay to take time to process things. By taking time to think I am able to figure out how I want to respond instead of just reacting. It’s also okay to just say okay and that be it. I will be the first to admit that I don’t always do it at the right time. I still sometimes come off really defensive or I say the first thing that comes to mind. Which of course results in an argument so I try to remember the technique the next time. I am really trying to learn to catch myself before I make any poor decisions. I am learning that getting this technique down. I am trying to be more patient with myself. At he end of the day I’m working to improve myself and become a better me.
I am learning that everything doesn’t have to be a fight. I also now know I don’t have to have the last word in every argument. It’s okay to talk away. It’s also okay to not have an answer or a response to everything that is said. It’s also fine to take time and process what is said to me. Plus I have to take my new normal one day at a time.