You are here

Understandable but No Longer Appropriate

My behaviour is 'understandable', but no longer 'appropriate'.

As people told me their life stories, I came to understand there were real and rational reasons for their behaviour choices. Going back over their histories, it becomes evident that people make the best choices they can under the particular circumstances for the various periods of their lives.

Very young children don't have real choices in regards to personal power or rational decision-making skills. Often they develop survival skills, and if we look at their Family of Origin, the community in which they grew up, the time period of their growing up, and geographical location, their behaviour is understandable. But as adults, they realize these behaviours are no longer appropriate.

It seems we keep doing things in the same old way - even when it no longer works - because it made sense in our Family of Origin or it 'used to work'. Adults do have the power to choose, to reason, to confront, to make things different. However, many didn't and couldn't when they were children, and so learned how to survive without the power they now have as adults.

There's no need to continue to overwork at the expense of one's health just because earlier in life that person learned not to deal with unhappy feelings, feared confrontation, or agonized that somebody might not like them. One immerses oneself in work in lieu of not dealing with those anxieties at that time. Adults have the power to deal with their feelings and to rationally know that people won't dislike them and leave them if they do not please them all the time.

Do you exhibit behaviours or feelings that make sense in light of your background (i.e., afraid to get close to people because of a hurtful childhood), but feel the need to change now that you are an adult? Do you now realize you have the personal power to make the changes and do what makes the most sense for a powerful, rational thinking adult?

You can't be held responsible for what pops into your mind (i.e. worry, thoughts, feelings), but you are responsible for what comes out of your mouth.