ATTITUDE RECONSTRUCTION: A BLUEPRINT FOR BUILDING A BETTER LIFE
Buy the Book

Jude's Blog Connect with Jude Bijou on FacebookFollow Jude Bijou on Twitter Follow Jude Bijou on Pinterest Attitude Reconstruction Podcasts

Posts Tagged ‘Peace’

How to Prepare for Any Stressful Event

prepare-eventYesterday I had a chance to help out a dear friend, Molly, who was about to take her grueling CPA test the next day. She called, relaying that she had lost several hours of sleep the previous night. I knew it was her fear that was between her and feeling calm and relaxed. The fear was affecting her thinking, and now she was telling herself “I’m not prepared enough” and “I didn’t study enough.” Her mind was also racing into the future, “What if I don’t pass? What would I tell people?”

Having identified Polly’s destructive thoughts, we set about finding truthful contradictions. For the first two, “I’m not prepared enough” and “I didn’t study enough,” I asked her what was true. Had she been eating bon-bons and watching mindless television these last months? She answered straight away, and I hurriedly wrote down what she said.

I’ve definitely been on it.
I’ve done all I can do.
There’s nothing more that I could have done.
I’ve done my best.

I asked Molly if what she was saying was true and she acknowledged how diligent she had been. That was easy! These truths were about her.

I had her repeat these four lines out loud a few times and we could both hear in her voice that she knew in her heart that it was true. Whew!

We then attacked Molly’s other group of destructive thoughts that had to do with what others would think. “What will I tell people if I don’t pass?”

Being the smart cookie that she is, she paused, laughed, and said, “I’ll tell them the same thing”:

I don’t know how I could have prepared anymore.
I guess I’ll just take it again.

With great relief she repeated these truths a few times. We could tell that she knew was in synch with what she was saying.

I reminded her that she now had some powerful weapons to combat her old doubts if they resurfaced between now and test time. I also encouraged Molly to repeat the two sets of truths several times throughout the day and night because they would bathe her in the reality.

Before we hung up the phone, I felt compelled to get on my soapbox and remind her that her bad thoughts indicated she was just feeling fear. Since fear is just a pure physical sensation, pure energy in the body, she should copy what animals do when they are afraid. They shiver, tremble and shake until the danger passes. We need to follow their lead and do the same.

Shiver up the spine, though your legs, out your arms and hands, in her hips, and in your neck and jaw. The key is to do it hard, fast, and with abandon. I knew it seems silly but it really works. Try it for 90 seconds and I guarantee you’ll start to laugh and the spell will be broken.

This simple activity is the rx for whenever we can’t sleep, or feel anxious, nervous, overwhelmed, agitated, etc. Shake that energy out of your body while just making sounds or saying something like “It’s just fear. I have to move it out of my body.”

It became clear to Molly that just like before a big bike race or ski competition, it didn’t make sense to work out all day. Likewise, it was going to be most helpful for her to attend a yoga class, take a run, or prepare a special meal and relax. All the months of training were behind her. She would be doing what calmed her down so she’d be fresh as a daisy in the morning, and even enjoy the test, since she’d be sure to know most of the answers.

I got a text from Molly, the next day, saying “I passed!” She was one happy gal. All her preparation had paid off.

Accepting The Way Big Corporations Which Run Our Lives Operate

corporation-numbersI wish you or someone would provide an approach to dealing with the corporations which run our lives. Corporations who collect our money (telephone companies, dating services, TV providers and many more), seduce us with promises to give a service, and then are totally unreachable to hear our voices about their LACK of service. They bury themselves in cocoons of automated telephone numbers, leaving messages which don’t get answered, writing emails which receive form letters… endless issues which don’t get addressed. It’s often impossible to reach a human being, and when one does, he is a powerless robot of the company.

How can one deal with them, or how to adopt an attitude that doesn’t ruin ones equilibrium? I so dislike how anonymous we have all become: just numbers and more numbers.

According to Attitude Reconstruction, the first step in finding an approach with the corporations that run our lives is to truly accept that here in 2015, that’s the way it is. That “People and things are the way they are, not the way I want them to be.” Accept that the services we receive are impersonal. Repeat these phrases over and over, until you truly get it that, “that’s the way it is.” Also do the same and accept that we have all become anonymous — just numbers and more numbers. “We have all become anonymous — just numbers and more numbers” “Yes. That’s true and I have to accept that fact if I want equilibrium.”

True acceptance takes you from anger to love, from perceiving the corporations as the enemy to figuring out what your heart tells you is the best course of action – for you.

This process is accelerated by expressing your anger constructively and physically because non- acceptance yields feelings of separate, alienation, and isolation. We have to deal with the emotion on an energetic level. That means while you are releasing the pure sensation you feel in your body by pounding, or stomping, or yelling nonsense words, just make sounds or repeat over and over, “that’s the way it is.” (Saying that should increase your anger, because the impersonal-ness feels like a violation or injustice and so naturally evokes the anger pure sensation in your body — hot extremities, wanting to strike out aggressively.) Use as your model, a little kid having a temper-tantrum. If not interrupted a child will dispel the anger energy and then move on getting interested in something else in the present.

Then from a state of equanimity you can look within yourself, your heart, and determine on a case by case basis, if there is something you can do or not. If so, do it. If not, make peace with the reality (repeat until you get it: “Corporations run the way they do, not the way I think they should run”) and you can easily move on back to grooving on what works, paying attention to what is in your power to change.

Tip: From a stance of true acceptance, you can look within and determine what resonates in terms of action. Without acceptance, you can take action but it’s easy to distract from your point by your destructive and blaming delivery style. Repeat the old adage coined by Dr. Albert Ellis “People and things are the way they are, not the way I want them to be.” And you will feel more loving and handle the situation more constructively.

Speak up to Transform Your Life and Relationships

communication_relationships

Both men and women have to speak up in order to take charge of their lives and cultivate meaningful relationships!

We don’t speak up for the same general reasons, which include:

  • I don’t want to rock the boat  — I want to keep the status quo
  • I don’t want others to have any emotions – be upset, scared, hurt, mad
  • I don’t want to hear what they have to say because I’m angry and when I’m angry, I’m convinced that my way is clearly the correct way
  • I want to avoid conflict at all cost

We pay a high price by stuffing it — by going silent, stonewalling, and withdrawing. Learn how you can transform your life & relationships.

Where’s my joy? I’ve just not honored myself – unhappy.

Where’s my love? Instead of feeling connected and being part of the collective energy flow, I’m a million miles away – isolated.

Where’s my peace? This moment doesn’t feel safe.

During a session recently, a husband was sitting on the couch with his wife. He was trying to share his health concerns with her. At his first pause, she started giving him nutritional recommendations.

I leaned forward and said to him: “And when she’s giving you her opinion and that’s the last thing in the world you want, with the sweetest most loving voice you can muster, say ‘Honey, I just want to be listened to for a few minutes right now.”

The key is to say it sweetly, lightly and repeatedly until she stops and refocuses on what you were saying.

And what did the guy on the couch say after all that? “That would be new for me!”

At an early age he’d learned to cope by going into his “serious brooding” mode and distancing himself. She hated it when he did that.

What we all really want in our social relationships especially with family members, is to feel good about ourselves, to feel connected/share/feel part of a team, and know we’re safe in our own little tribe. (Attitude Reconstruction contends that these three goals are the three Ultimate Attitudes associated with the three emotions of joy, love, and peace.)

When the other person has coaxed you to talk or you finally speak up about something you know you’ve been avoiding, more joy, love, and peace awaits just by lightly repeating the words…

“I just want to be listened to for a few minutes right now.”

Here are three important points:

  1. This doesn’t mean you get to hold onto the microphone and talk for as long as you want. It’s got to be shared fifty-fifty.
  1. Talk about yourself and what’s going on for you. This isn’t “listen to me while I tell you about you.” For both or all people involved, the focus is you sharing about yourself. That’s how feelings of closeness arise.
  1. When you’ve finished what you want to say, you can solicit other’s impressions, feelings, suggestions, etc. IF you want them.

 

We all just want to be understood, aka listened to – to be seen for “us” as a worthy being.  As scary as it can seem at first, I guarantee that speaking up will bring copious rewards and breakthrough moments. You will be more authentic and your relationship will prosper.

 

How to Handle Unsolicited Advice

We all know some well intending (for the most part) souls who are happy to give us directives in everything from how to wear our hair to why we need to get a ‘real’ job to why we’re the reason our kid is failing algebra. Mom might tell you to ditch the boyfriend or stand up to the boss. Instead of biting your tongue or lashing out in frustration, it’s time to adopt a strategy to deal with all the unsolicited advice you’re getting in your life.

Their well-meaning 2-cents-worth is what I call, “you-ing.” They are telling you about you without your permission. That’s the opposite of the first Attitude Reconstruction communication rule, which is “talk about yourself” — stick to your “I.” You-ing naturally elicits anger. They are out of their own back yard. If you aren’t ready for or don’t want feedback, it’s counter productive.

According to Attitude Reconstruction, when you’re drowning in the sea of uninvited advice from others, remember these six tips:

  1. Unsolicited advice and opinions mean that someone believes they are entitled to tell you about yourself without gaining permission. The reality is that we are each responsible for ourselves. That’s quite enough of a task in itself.
  1. When unsolicited advice comes at you, don’t argue with it. Remember that you are just the target of their misplaced anger, that it’s not personal, and that you are fine just the way you are. Blasting them back won’t help. Don’t look for the grain of truth in what’s being said. Don’t be overly polite and let others go on and on just to hear themselves talk. Instead, be the matador, put out your cape, step aside, and let the “bull” go flying by.
  1. Then lovingly but firmly speak up about what is true for you. Tell them it’s not helpful to you to receive unsolicited advice. Maybe mention that support and appreciation work much better for you. Matador their retort to you speaking up. Don’t get sucked into their rationalizations about how they are just trying to help. Acknowledge their good intentions and be a broken record, such as “I‘m getting angry right now because I’m not wanting any advice right now.”
  1. If they don’t hear and acknowledge what you’ve said — what is true for you right now – lovingly say it again, as many times as you need to, until they stop. Repeat each time they do it again. “I know you’re concerned about me, but I’m really not looking for input right now. When I need it, I’ll let you know.”
  1. And finally, appreciate them at times when they are not giving advice. Deep down, we all relish compliments, even though we may resist at the time.

 

Learning to tap in and listen to your own soul’s advice is always the biggest source of wisdom. But when others are bent on telling you the way your life needs to be, remember to honor yourself, to speak your truth and to say, ‘no thank you.’

 

Worry Less, Enjoy More

freedom

We’re a society that likes to worry. Worrying is so prevalent, it almost feels socially acceptable. We consider it a good trait if a mom worries about her kids, a teenager worries about good grades, or a father worries about his company shutting down. We’ve accepted worry as a common human condition and while we’ve all been there (and may be there right now), it doesn’t mean we have to live there.

Read more ...

Free Communication Class

Mark your calendar!

UPCOMING FREE COMMUNICATION CLASS

Saturday October 19, 2019
Santa Barbara

More Info

Jude Bijou, Author
Jude Bijou is a licensed marriage and family therapist, educator, author, and speaker.  Meet Jude

Sign up to receive our FREE MONTHLY NEWSLETTER
We will not distribute your email address to anyone.
Buy the Book

Attitude Reconstruction
2012 Benjamin Franklin Award
Winner in Self-Help
2012 ForeWord Reviews
Winner in Psychology
2012 ForeWord Reviews
Winner in Self-Help
2012 International Book Award
Winner in Health: Psychology/Mental Health
2012 Nautilus Silver Award
Winner in Personal Growth/Self Help/Psychology
2012 LA Festival of Books
Winner in How To

Jude's Blog
Download eBook - 33 Bad Attitudes and What You Can Do With Them

Take the Free Survey

Bookstores and Libraries

Login Form

We invite you to take our short survey.

Your answers will give you a picture of what emotions are running your life and what is holding you back from feeling joy, love and peace.

CLICK HERE TO TAKE THE SURVEY