Do you have people in your life who love to push your buttons? Lord knows I do. Why do we allow one telephone conversation or text message put us in an emotional and psychological tailspin that can last for hours or even days?
Many would say this is where detaching with loves enters the picture. If we step away perhaps we can learn how to react to the button pusher in a more effective way. Remembering that we can’t control what they do or try to do, but we can gain some control over our own reactions. Hold your arm out away from your body. Now reach back and touch your shoulder with your hand. You should be looking at your elbow. If you draw a line from your elbow to the floor, that space directly in front of you is about all you can really control so STOP trying to control others. Their patters, particularly their patterns with us, are their issues. How we react are our issues! Simple, practical right but insane too that we keep circling the same tree.
We CAN take care of our loved one without feeling guilty. We can be assertive without being aggressive. We can set boundaries without being disloyal. Finally, we can learn to love this person without giving up love and respect for ourselves.
Here are some tools that might help. They come from lifehack.org
1. Understand that your buttons are your buttons.
Buttons are the things (ideas or subjects) that make you react in a certain way. We all have areas of sensitivity and I am pretty sure we know what they are.
2. Learn to steer the conversation away from sensitive subjects or areas.
When you are in a situation where someone is heading into the danger zone for you, the smart thing to do is to steer the conversation away from the area of your sensitivity. This is a skill that you can learn and it will give you power in any conversation.
Many people can be insensitive or inadvertently push your buttons. Many times you can cope with this behavior by changing the subject. For example, if someone brings up a subject that is a sore point for you. You simply ask the person something about himself, preferably something that he is interested in. People love to talk about themselves and the communication about the sensitive area will be completely forgotten.
3. Educate the people close to you what your buttons are and find out theirs.
A very good thing to do at the beginning of any close relationships such as newlyweds or fiancés would be to sit down and go over areas that might be sensitive. Then at least, when you wade through the minefield, you know where the mines are. You are less likely to have one explode in your face. It is also good to make an agreement that you will never use these areas to intentionally hurt the other person no matter how angry you might be.
4. If something has really upset you, go somewhere quiet and regroup.
Sometimes these things take us by surprise and it can be difficult to regain our composure. The best thing to do when that occurs is to go somewhere by yourself and regroup. Do not react when you are severely upset. Wait until you have calmed down enough to figure out a good way to handle the upset.
Nothing good comes from blindly reacting from a painful place. Pain creates pain in these instances and the impulse might be to hurt that person in return. This starts a chain reaction of negativity and you always feel terrible afterward.
Breathe, dry your tears and go turn the situation around.
5. Understand that a person’s hurtful comments have nothing to do with you.
They really don’t, no matter what the other person is saying.
If the person is being nasty, that is NOTHING to do with you. It is ONLY in his or her own universe and comes from his or her own personal pain.
The best thing you can do when this occurs is to recognize that the nasty person in front of you is not the real person. Granted there are some people who are like this all the time and are best avoided but the majority of people are just doing their best with a huge lack of workable tools to fix unhappy situations. They don’t like acting the way they do any more than you like having to deal with it.
Just look beyond the hurtful comments of these desperate people and take the opportunity to help him or her solve the problems. Get them to talk and be interested in finding out the real problem. If they are just too angry or verbally abusive, let them know that you will try to help when they calm down and then you can have a real conversation. Being able to pinpoint problems and help others to do so is a valuable skill. Those around you rightly perceive you as a valuable ally and value you.
6. Understand that certain relationships have buttons in common and need extra care and consideration.
Specifically, I am talking about the familial relationship. So many times these can get off on the wrong foot and make you both miserable. In close relationships, there is shared pain, and buttons come from pain. This pain can then create patterns of behavior that are destructive
Understand that just because patterns are set early in a relationship does not mean they have to remain that way during the relationship.
7. Recognize that another’s behavior may be the result of limiting beliefs, prejudices, opinions and generalizations.
And guess what! You don’t have to explain yourself, justify yourself or in any way prove that you are a good and decent person!
Even if you did, this person would not see it anyway because all he or she sees is his or her own limited views.
You are not responsible for someone else’s prejudices or generalizations. Let it go and move on.