How To Know A Person's TRUE Character
Unfortunately, I know a lot of people who "don't judge people." Now, you're probably thinking to yourself, "But Carol! We shouldn't judge people! It's wrong!" Yeah yeah. I know. I actually try VERY hard not to judge people. But there is a difference between judging people and allowing their bad behavior to continue in your life.
For instance, I know someone who recently posted a song on Facebook that said it was her and her boyfriend's "song." And I thought, "Huh. Okay cool, let me listen to it." Well, here are the main lyrics of the chorus:
"Now maybe ... I didn't mean to treat you bad. But I did it anyway."
Wow. That got me thinking.
I mean, this is "their song," and it says "I didn't mean to treat you bad. But I did it anyway." Does that mean that it's acceptable to tolerate mean behavior if the person "didn't mean to," but they still did it anyway?
Now keep in mind, this person who treated her badly not only has a criminal past, but he beat her, starved her, and controlled her.
But it's "their song."
And I know someone else who was dating someone with a criminal past. Let me just say something about that: That's a red flag!!!
Now, I'm not here to judge any of these people. Actually, I feel very sorry for them and hope they receive the help they need to love themselves enough to break free from a dysfunctional relationship. But you have to recognize dysfunction first.
But you don't need to be a in a relationship with an abusive criminal to think about people's true character. I have also fallen victim to "not judging" so much that I has come back to bite me. For example, I learned that if you loaned someone money 5 years ago and they promise to pay you back ... but you are still waiting ... well, you know what I'm thinking. It ain't gonna happen! I went way too long "not judging" the person for not caring about paying me back and how that has affected me. But it sure taught me some valuable lessons.
So here are 5 of the lessons I learned about seeing someone's TRUE character:
1. Pay attention to how they have behaved in the past.
As Dr. Phil always says, "The best predictor of future behavior is past behavior." Think about it. It's so simple that it makes you go "DUH!!" Of course!! Not that people can't change, but it's kind of rare. So if you want to know what someone is like, ask them questions about their past (if you just met them). If you haven't just met them, then look at what they have done. That says it all.
2. Look at their current behavior.
They may have had a rough past. Okay, that's fine. No one is perfect! But are they taking action to change themselves for the better? Or are they still doing what they did in the past? As you can tell, this is closely related to #1. But if you're hoping that anyone is going to change so that they will be the person you want them to be, you might be setting yourself up for disappointment.
3. Do their words and actions match?
"I'll pay you back!" Oh, I've heard that one way too many times. "I won't hit you again!" I'm sure abused people have heard that too. You get the point. As the saying goes, "Actions speak louder than words." It's true. But sometimes we forget that. I know I have.
4. Watch for how they treat everyone.
Do they suck up to their rich boss but they treat the person at the drive-thru window like dirt? If so, that's a bad sign. Everyone deserves to be treated with respect ... whether you are a ditch-digger or the CEO of a major Fortune 500 company. And don't forget to watch how they treat you too. It should be in a respectful and kind manner. ALWAYS.
5. Do you hear "that little voice in your head?"
If you find yourself making excuses for their behavior and then getting a bad twinge somewhere in your body, that is probably your intuition screaming at you. Don't ignore it!! I know I have!! And it never turns out well!! If you have a bad feeing - it's probably accurate.
Well, hopefully this blog didn't sound negative. I am actually trying to help you avoid any more unnecessary heartbreak or frustration. And so I hope I have given you food for thought.
I truly hope that this helps you choose to spend your time with people who lift you HIGHER!! :)
I frequently write and speak about how important it is to appreciate everything in your life. It's easy for some people, and not so easy for others. Obviously, most of the time the determining factor is how good your life is. Sure, feeling appreciation when life is going well is not nearly as difficult when it's not.
I am one of the lucky ones who has a lot to be grateful for. However, the last couple of weeks has really tested my ability to stay positive during hard times. Let me tell you what happened.
On Halloween night, my youngest son was trick-or-treating with his friends in the neighborhood. He had developed a cough that day, but it wasn't anything out of the ordinary. I just figured he was catching a cold. However, he had to come inside the house during trick-or-treating so he could rest. That's not like him! But I figured, "Oh okay, this is going to be a bad cold, or maybe a respiratory virus."
That weekend, he was at his dad's house - and he developed a VERY high temperature. We're talking like 103-104 degrees. And it just wouldn't go away. I took him to the doctor a couple of times that week. The doctor listened for pneumonia, but couldn't hear anything. But by the following Friday, he still was miserable and had a pretty high temperature (100-101).
So the doctor recommended a chest x-ray to rule out pneumonia. Well, not only did he have pneumonia, he had a really bad case of it. They told us to take him to the emergency room at the Children's Hospital in town. After examining him, they immediately said they were going to admit him - for at least one night, maybe two.
Like I said, I have been lucky. Sure, my kids have had colds and the flu - hasn't everyone? But the last time either of my sons stayed the night in a hospital was when they were born.
I slept with him that night at the hospital. The nurses came in every hour to check on him. I would be lying if I said I wasn't scared.
But even in my dark moment of fear, I found gratitude.
"Thank God it's 'only' pneumonia," I thought.
That might sound weird. But I know way too many parents who are (or were) dealing with far worse things than pneumonia with their children. Some of their children have cancer, diabetes, or been killed in car accidents. So once again, I said ...
"Thank God it's 'only' pneumonia."
It was only yesterday that we learned just how bad his case was. All of the pediatricians at his doctor's office had looked at his x-ray and were talking about what a terrible case it was.
He was kind of famous in the doctor's office. Not exactly what I would like him to be famous for, however!
Another good thing is that he has bounced back so quickly. He was operating on only 75% of his lung capacity, and now he almost seems back to normal. The doctor said he has some powerful lungs and must be a healthy kid to recover so quickly.
We all go through bad times. And it is difficult to find the silver lining sometimes. But I hope my story has given you a little inspiration for trying to find gratitude - even if your dark times.
I hate to exercise. I'm sure I have written about this in my other blogs, so this is probably no surprise if you are one of my regular readers or on my mailing list. And how I wish to God that I loved it. I mean, I know a lot of people who actually do like to work out! They jog because it makes them feel good, and some of them even run marathons. Meanwhile, I always scratch my head and wonder why I wasn't given that natural love of exercise? Dang, that would be awesome. It would make staying healthy so much easier!
But alas, I didn't get that gene. And because of that, I have struggled for all of my adult life trying to figure out a way to stop hating exercise. Don't get me wrong - I've gone through phases in my life where I do work out. But I think the longest I've ever stuck to it is about a year. And THAT is only because I had just had my first son, and my mom was helping out. She would come over to help me with the baby and let me go work out. Suddenly, the loathing of exercise was trumped by my desire for some "me-time" - away from my demanding baby for a little while (I know I sound like a bad mom, but anyone know knows me - and my son - would understand! LOL)
Back then, I thought I had figured it out. The only way that I could even remotely stick to a work out routine was to buy a stationary bike and watch TV while I rode it. In my mind, I somehow thought that watching TV would make me "forget" that I was exercising. It didn't really work, but it was better than going to the gym.
Fast forward 13 years, and I no longer find watching TV as a sufficient distraction to fool myself into exercising. Perhaps it is because I am no longer escaping a colicky baby (that colicky baby is now in the 8th grade so I have a built-in baby sitter - school ... haha).
I can't tell you how I struggle with making lame excuses to myself ("something unexpected came up today") and then beating myself up over those excuses because I know it's a bunch of bull.
I'm not good at lying to myself.
I call myself out on it every time.
So in the last week or so, I came up with another "brilliant idea." You see, one of the lame excuses I tell myself is that "If something unexpected comes up, I really can't find the time to get undressed, go in the basement and do a full workout for 45 minutes." So I decided to try something where I would not be able to use that excuse anymore.
I decided that I would just exercise little bits throughout the day. That way, I could no longer tell myself that I couldn't commit to a 45 minute work-out. I brought up my hand weights and put them in the kitchen. When I get up from the computer, I now grab it and do 25 reps on each arm. Then go back to work. Then I'll do 25 sit ups when I feel like it. And go back to work. Later, I decide to go on a 20 minute walk. Then go back to work. And maybe after that I do some lunges and more sit ups.
You see, it doesn't really feel like I'm "exercising" that way. I know that fitness experts would argue that it's not really doing me any good because I don't break a sweat or get my pulse up high enough. But here's my theory ...
Moving my body is better than NOT moving my body.
Am I going to run a marathon any time soon? Absolutely NOT!! That's would just be insane. Hell would have to freeze over before I would do that. But have I "sort of" come up with a way to be more active and burn some extra calories? Well, I hope so. I think so.
Ask me in 6 months to see if I have stuck with it ;-)
So how does this apply to you? We all have things that we hate doing. So maybe you could try doing something similar to what I'm doing. Break it up. Try to fool yourself. I'm not saying it will work for everyone, but it's worth a try.
Heck, I'm just hoping it works for me.
Wish me luck! :)
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