You are what you do.

It would be folly to think that we can go about in life doing anything we please.you are what you do Any good relationship advice will validate that!

Many have learned that the hard way, twisting and turning, getting bent out of shape.

My mother’s generation seemed most concerned with...

“What will other people think?”

My grandson’s generation has an entitlement mentality:

The world owes me big time.”

This turned my mother into a chronic worrier, stifling her desires, ambitions and talents to keep other people from potentially making judgments that would upset her, and my grandson into a young adult with an underlying anger at his world.  They make choices that have consequences. The consequences create learning. What they learn becomes their life story...and their view of the world.


I  had a  client, a CEO of a mid-size company, who came to me to improve his relationship with his wife. He came to our weekly call upset. He said that he had just had an encounter with a colleague that angered him to the point of yelling, swearing and throwing the fellow out of his office. To his chagrin, I said,

“So, you are a CEO who yells, swears and throws people out of your office.”

He then became somewhat upset with me as he explained that his behavior was simply a response to the outrageous behavior of his VP. He was clear that this fellow had overstepped all boundaries and had clearly no understanding of appropriate behavior. So, my client justified his behavior, and I said:

“So, you are a CEO who yells, swears and throws people out of your office.”

Again, he patiently tried to explain to me that he had never yelled, sworn or thrown anyone out of his office before, therefore, this was a special case. He plead his case that it was all about the VP and had nothing to do with him. He was simply reacting–or, he preferred to think it was responding–to this unseemly, inappropriate behavior.
[tweetthis]Are you a CEO who yells, swears and throws people out of your office? You are if that's what you do.[/tweetthis] Slowly I did my best to lead him to see that his choice of behavior was entirely his and the behavior of the VP had really nothing to do with his response. If he were the person he believed himself to be: kind, fair, encouraging and empowering, he had the strength and clarity to choose to respond to the VP from that place. Trying to justify his reaction by placing the power in the hands of the VP is simply crooked thinking!

You can easily see how this example relates to couple life. Are you who you say you are with your partner? Do you talk a good game and act differently? Do you have expectations of your partner that you do not have of yourself? It's wise to take responsibility for who you are, rather than looking for someone to blame.

There is no escape: who you are is what you do. That’s why it is so important to take the time–as I do with my clients–to reflect, to discuss and to clarify who you are. Then, you will do what that person, the one you have defined, does.

You will not give away your power and allow others to “make” you do things that are outside of your values and your decisions about your life. You might need a little bit of relationship help to renegotiate with yourself on this one!

In my opinion, there is no escape: I am what I do in every situation. How about you? Are you willing to take that stand?


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