10 Rules for Far Fighting

This past Sunday, I sat on my comfy couch in my bedroom, like I do every Sunday to indulge in some SuperSoul Sunday​ (Yup! I watch a few Dr. Phil episodes which air right before). One of his shows led me to some online digging and I found some basis for this post I had drafted a few days earlier. It’s interesting how life gives you what you need, when you need it.

Arguing is a fact of life. How you argue can determine the long-term success or failure in any kind of relationship — especially how you end an argument.

Dr. Phil says that a primary requirement for any fight is to maintain control. You do not have the license to be childish, abusive or immature.

You are entitled to give a reasonable voice to your feelings in a constructive way. Disagreements are going to occur. The question is, do you go into it with a spirit of looking for resolution or do you go into it with a spirit of getting even, vengeance, control? You’ll never win if you do that.

If you make your relationship a competition, that means your spouse, colleague or friend has to lose in order for you to win.

The truth is that it’s not a competition. All of these different types of relationships are  in fact a partnership.

So the next time you find yourself in an argument, here are 10 rules to follow:

  1. Fight by mutual consent. Don’t insist on an argument at a time when one of you can’t handle the strain. A good fight demands two ready participants. Agree when to stop and start the argument.
  2. Stick to the present. Don’t bring up past mistakes that nothing can be done about.
  3. Stick to the subject. At the time of the argument, address one issue at a time.
  4. Don’t hit below the belt. Attack the issue, not the person. Treat each other with mutual respect during the argument.
  5. Don’t quit, work it out. Bring the fight to a mutual conclusion. Otherwise, it will just reoccur.
  6. Don’t try to win, EVER. If one wins, the other loses. That builds resentment about the relationship. Avoid ultimatums.
  7. Respect crying. Crying is a feeling just like smiling. Don’t let the crying sidetrack you or then make the argument about the crying. Crying is a valid response to how we feel.
  8. Don’t involve others. Only those directly involved in the conflict need to be in the discussion and attempt to resolve it.
  9. Agree to disagree. Every issue won’t be resolved but appropriate discussion of issues can lead to increased understanding.
  10. No violence. Physical violence violates all of the above rules.

Dr. Phil says that how an argument ends is crucial. Learn to recognize when an olive branch is being extended to you — perhaps in the form of an apology or a joke — and give the other person a way out of the disagreement.

You have a choice. Arguments should be temporary, don’t let them get out of hand.


The Deceptive Narrator

The most powerful stories may be the ones we tell ourselves -but beware, they’re usually fiction. Brené Brown

The last month has been nothing short of challenging in both my personal and professional environments. I firmly believe that as much as you try to separate personal from professional, that very dance can consequently be more stressful than the situation you may be dealing with.

I am not going to get into the dirty details of how my life has taken a 360º turn, what I will get into is how important it’s been to listen to and tell others the stories of how we’ve gotten to where we are today.

It’s no coincidence that I picked up the September Issue of O Magazine where Brené Brown, Elizabeth Gilbert and others get into the importance of storytelling  and how the very act of listening is where we turn for encouragement in how we live.

You see, stories are the glue of what we are. They stitch together what we become. Our ability to tell them is fundamental to how we celebrate and examine our lives. Sharing our stories reminds us of what we believe in and helps us make sense of a fickle world.

According to neurobiologists, our brain turns into a carnival when we tell our stories; lights switch on in our heads. Through the simple act of telling we are reimagining ourselves. This happens even more spectacularly when we hear the stories of others.

We tell each other what’s happened to us not only because we want to know we’re worthwhile but because we want others to feel worthwhile too. Everything could be taken from us this instant: our home, our identities, our health, our loved ones -but our stories remain.

Our stories are also about self-preservation. You see when we feel threatened, we run. When we feel exposed or hurt, we find someone to blame. We even blame ourselves first before anyone else can. This is where ‘The Deceptive Narrator’ comes in. This unconscious storytelling leaves us stuck: We keep tripping over the same issues and when we fall, we struggle to get back up. We tell ourselves lies and we believe them.

The fabulous news is that this is also where resilience comes in. We have the ability to rewrite these stories by challenging these confabulations. The truth is we just have to be brave enough to get dirty with ourselves. Brown explains it as reckoning with our emotions. When you do, you can change your narrative. She gives 4 steps to do just that:

  1. Engage with your feelings. You don’t need to know exactly where the feelings are coming from, you just have to acknowledge them.
  2. Get Curious About the Story Behind the Feelings. Ask yourself: Why am I being so hard on everyone? What happened right before this Nutella craving set in? Why am I obsessing about what Samantha said? While this step may be difficult, know that the only way to get to the truth is by pushing through discomfort.
  3. Write It Down. Get your thoughts on paper. A story driven by emotion and self-preservation doesn’t involve accuracy, logic or civility. If it does, then you’re not being completely honest.
  4.  Get Ready To Rumble. Like I say ‘Let’sRoll!’, this is where you get dirty. This is where you ask yourself questions like: What are the facts? What are my assumptions? What do I need to know about the others involved? What am I feeling? What part did I play?

For me, this past month has been one of radical introspection. I’ve been rumbling with my shame, my blame, my aggression. I’ve been reckoning with acknowledging that these emotions exist in me more than I’ve been willing to admit, but not to others…to myself.

Interestingly enough, you might learn that you’ve been masking shame with cynicism or that being vulnerable and asking for what you want is more enticing than basking in resentment. Resentment bottles up a world of confabulations that you begin to believe.

Confronting yourself, your fears, your aggression, shame and blame can be difficult. Getting to these truths is uncomfortable, but it’s the road to meaningful change.

Owning our stories can be hard, but not nearly as difficult as spending our lives running from it…Only when we are brave enough to explore the darkness will we discover the infinite power of our light.

Brené Brown


Ego: Be Aware + Decide to Let Go

One of the hardest things to let go of for some people is their ego. I am not exempt from it. I work on it everyday.

I am sure you can identity when ego is acting up in others: those who always think they are right, who control and those who think and act like they are above other people. There’s been a lot of dialogue lately amongst some of my close colleagues and friends about ‘ego’ and how it affects how we interact with each other.

Yeah, I go there with my friends. If you know me well…you know I am more open to talking about things like these than I am about shoes. (Geez…I know).

Reading some Deepak this morning, I came across an excerpt where he describes the three things the ego is doing all the time:

1) the need to control,

2) the need to be approved, and

3) the need to judge.

He adds, “Be aware of them every time they come up and decide to let them go.”

I know that it may be difficult to do but I have found that  meditation and prayer have  helped me identify when those feelings arise.

When I decided to live what I call a fabulous  life, a life filled with abundance, child like wonder and awareness all while being my perfectly imperfect self I learned that I am constantly evolving, growing, learning from myself and others.

When you decide to go beyond your ego and the internal dialogue…you can reach a state of bliss, joy and yes, live fabulously.

How do you practice awareness? Has your ego held you back? I’d love to hear what you do. Leave me a comment below.


3 Steps to Finding Abundance in Your Life

Do you look at the glass as half way filled or half way empty? If you’re see it empty, you can change the cycle. Here are 3 steps you can take to find abundance in your life:
Step 1: See the world as an abundant, providing, friendly place. When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change. When you see the world as abundant and friendly, your intentionsare genuine possibilities. They will become a certainty, because your world will be experienced from a world that provides rather than restricts. You’ll see a world that wants you to be successful and abundant, rather than one that conspires against you.
Step 2: Affirm: I attract success and abundance into my life because that is who I am. This puts you in harmony with your Source. Your goal is to eliminate any distance between what you desire and that from which you pull it into your life. Abundance and success aren’t out there waiting to show up for you. You are already it, and the Source can only provide you with what it is, and, consequently, what you already are.

Step 3: Stay in an attitude of allowing. Resistance is disharmony between your desire for abundance and your beliefs about your ability. Allowing means a perfect alignment. An attitude of allowing means that you ignore efforts by others to dissuade you. It also means that you don’t rely on your pervious ego-oriented beliefs about abundance being a part of or not a part of your life. In an attitude of allowing, all resistance in the form of thoughts of negativity or doubt are replaced with simply knowing that you and your Source are one. Picture the abundance you desire freely flowing directly to you.