Good Day 😊
I will be starting to send out monthly skills once a month for every one to take a peek at and see if they like the skills, if the skill does not apply to you please disregard the skill and hopefully you will like the next one!
Additionally, this is a bit different from the weekly mental health tips I send out to help keep you engaged in therapeutic process.
January’s Monthly Skill
Look for the Lesson and the Gift in Things
1. Sit quietly by yourself. Close your eyes and take a few deep breaths.
2. Recall a specific situation that has caused you to feel any of the following (avoid traumatic events): Negative emotional response, feel wronged, to blame others, a conflict with someone, parenting issue, or partner conflict
3. Picture the person or people involved, the setting (where did it happen), and what was said or done.
4. Imagine taking several steps back and observing the situation from a distance, as though you were watching a movie on a screen.
5. What part of what happened can you take responsibility for? Did you ignore signs that should have clued you in that there was a problem? Did you act in a way that might have provoked the situation? Did your thoughts or actions escalate the situation?
6. What’s your lesson to learn from what happened? Do you need more patience or better boundaries? Do you need to listen more, say less?
7. Ask yourself: If this were happening for a higher purpose, what would that be? Can you find the gift?
8. Write down the most important thing you can do differently as a result of finding the lesson or the gift.
Example: As I sit quietly and think I recall a time when me and my partner were having a disagreement. We were in our room on the second floor of the home, it was dark, later in the evening, and it was raining outside. We were in a disagreement about a discipline that was given to one of our children. We both had different ideas about the punishment for the child, who had skipped school that day, he thought we should ground the child for a month, and I thought we should take away her cell phone for a week. We both thought we were right! We both resorted to calling each other names, saying things like you are spoiling her like your mom did to you, you are a horrible parent, etc. When I took a step back and looked at it as an observer, I could see that we both should have compromised on the punishment, we were both set that our way was the right way to punish. We both were stressed about receiving a call from the school that the child had skipped school, we took that frustration out on each other. We both provoked the other by resorting to name calling and belittling each other. I ignored my partners body language that indicated that he was very upset and frustrated. I take responsibility for saying he was a horrible parent, for not communicating in a health way, and for taking out my frustration on my partner. What I could have done better was to have more patience, be more understanding and I could have offered a compromise instead of having to be right. The gift was to learn to compromise, be more aware of my partner’s needs, and to be a unified team.