|Emotional Debts: (3) Identifying debts and Resolution|
|Articles - Relationships|
|Written by AnJ|
|Friday, 03 November 2006 00:00|
Welcome to part 3 of this series. In this section, we talk about how to identify relational debts in four simple steps.
1. Are there Problem Behaviors?
In such situations, it is important to feedback to your partner (or whoever you are dealing with) about her behavior. For example:
Ellen cites a specific incident and points out the discrepancy between Carol’s normal behavior and the problem behavior. This is a crucial step to recognizing that something is amiss. It also prevents the discussion from sliding into “you are over-reacting… no, you are really behaving strangly” cycle.
2. What are the underlying emotions?
Behaviors are an indication of emotions that lie beneath the surface. Some are more obvious than others. Example: Smashing of items generally reveals anger/frustration. Others are less apparent. Example: Being silent may reflect sorrow, anger, avoidance or fatigue.
Looking at the link between behaviors and feelings requires a sense of honesty. (Surprised?) Not all of us are self-aware and those of us who are… may not be self-aware in all situations.
3. Determining if you are a creditor or a debtor.
How you feel is the best indicator.
Resentment: Irritation, Annoyance, Anger, Contempt, Rage, Hatred, Vengefulness.
Guilt: Sense of responsibility, Inadequacy, Regret, Remorse, Embarrassment, Shame, Self-hate.
4. Locating the origin of debt.
You can ask yourself: “What’s pissing me off?” Or.. “What am i trying to pay back?”
Examples of some answers to these questions:
1. The very first step to debt resolution is to realize that it is all about perceptions. How many times have you heard people say these:
“I know perfectly what you mean.”
People frequently argue about who is right, who is wrong, who did what, who said what and what these mean. Each of us have unshakable faith in our own objectivity. Any discrepancies is due to mis-interpretations on everyone else’s parts. This attitude of “I am always right!” need not be consciously endorsed for you to behave this way.
Thus, when we go about solving interpersonal problems, we need to do so with humility and respect for perceptual differences. Changing the way you phrase things would help tremendously.
The limitations of human perception also means that we can be absolutely wrong!
2. The second thing we need to know is accepting that a debt exist does not mean that the debt is valid. That means that your partner’s perception may be unjustifiable under the circumstances… but that does not mean that the sense of debt is not real.
When you are caught in such a situation, you can:
But keep this in mind:
When the debt is valid, you can move on to specifying how you want the debt settled.
Examples: flowers, hobby products, increased affection,, foot rubs, stop smoking, make phone calls from work, change hair-style, clean the house.
However, things are not always as smooth.
We will cover this in part 4 of this series.
|Last Updated on Thursday, 25 February 2010 17:22|