When you really boil it down, there are only two solutions to every dilemma- Change the situation or change your response to it. If you find that you absolutely cannot go on any longer in a situation, then change the situation. Change your morning routine, change your diet and exercise program or perhaps it is who takes responsibility for the household finances. The beauty of it is, that when you change a situation, the others involved in it must also change. It is a natural law.
I had a client who was overwhelmed. There was just too much on her plate. She was constantly worried about money even though her and her husband lived comfortably and within their means. She didn’t trust him to handle the checkbook because years before he made some mistakes. Because this one issue was both stressful and time consuming for her, we decided we could kill two birds with one stone. The result was amazing. Not only did her husband step up and willingly take charge, but he was deeply touched that she believed in his mature ability. He felt important and trustworthy in the eyes of his wife and worked extra diligently to make sure the bills were taken care of. Her marriage improved in others areas. He found others ways to take some pressure off of her. He thrived on becoming her hero and she openly praised him.
If your morning routine is always rushed and full of shouting and tug of war- change the situation. Decide together, how can we make mornings more pleasant. Pack lunches the night before, set up the coffee maker, lay out the clothing and gather papers. Sometimes something so simple as starting a bit earlier for your commute, arrive early and use the few minutes before you must start work to review your calendar or plan a vacation. You will be in a better mood and start the day so much more relaxed and happy, rather than in panic mode. Your co-workers will respond to the new you.
When we decided to divide the household chores, my former husband agreed to do laundry. The problem was he would wait until he had nothing left to wear and it piled so high that it took over our closet, making me crazy. So rather than stew about it, I decided to bag up the clothing and put in in the laundry room. Out of sight, out of mind. I didn’t look at it and he did it on his own sweet time. Of course it took him all day but that was his choice.
Your partner snores. They get throat surgery or breathing strips, you get earplugs or sleep in the other room. Change the situation.
If there is a situation that you can’t change, then change your response to it. Stop letting it bug you. It is a choice. What you focus on grows and what you ignore dies. In Lamaze, women are taught to redirect their pain by focusing on an object and keep remembering the joy the new baby will bring. Don’t talk about a nagging situation or rehash it in your mind. You give it more power. When you catch yourself, turn off the voice in your head and think about 10 things you love about your life or focus on something beautiful- like a flower or a picture. These small adjustments can reap huge rewards!