You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘relationships’ tag.

Recovering people pleaserThe key to failure is trying to please everybody. ~Bill Cosby

A healthy boundary is like an energy bubble that protects your mind, body, and spirit from negative influences.

Think back to a situation when you felt angry, frustrated, or resentful. Got one? If you’re human, you do.

Now look for clues to the kinds of boundaries you coulda-woulda-shoulda set in the past.


Did you feel a bit like a doormat in that situation?


To set a healthy boundary with another person you’ll need:
1. A friend to support you before and after the conversation

2. Language to set the boundary gracefully and honestly

3. To make a direct request


Remember, when setting boundaries you cannot control another person’s response or behavior.

You can only deliver the message with as much grace and compassion as you can.


And don’t forget JADE: You don’t need to justify, argue, defend or (over)explain your position. Your needs are always valid.

Start with the easy boundaries. It will probably feel uncomfortable when you first start setting them. As you get stronger, tackle the more challenging ones.

Back up your boundaries with action. If you relax your boundaries by giving in, you invite people to ignore your needs.


Some people think of boundaries as walls. I prefer to think of them as doors with the doorknob on my side.


What do you think of boundaries?

Comments welcome!

Have they made your life easier? Or harder in some way?




Where's the mouse?

Where’s the mouse?

Earlier this month, I decided to convert. To Apple.

Ahhh, Macbook Air. Sleek. Light. It doesn’t heat up in my lap. Oh, and even better — it was free, inherited from my mother-in-law.

I hauled the Mac and my old PC over to my favorite computer geek. He spent two days copying all the files plus piles of emails and photos.

I was so excited when he called and said my new Airbook was ready for pick-up. Yes — my new identity. I was finally a savvy, shiny Apple person.

Now I could travel with my tiny laptop. I’d whip it out of my purse and utterly amaze my seat-mate on the plane.

Not so fast, pardner.

 I tried to embrace the new operating system. Really, I did. I wanted to like the Mac layout that crunched my calendar, emails and task list onto one tiny screen. Tried to keep breathing when my 200 favorite bookmarks got lost in translation.

Sometimes I enjoy change. But this one turned out to be too big a stretch.

About 2 weeks into my conversion experiment, I found myself cheating on Mac.   After all, P.C. understood me.  He had his quirks, but he was familiar. And with the Fall weather, I enjoyed the fact that he was, well, hotter.

Mac and I have broken up. I guess he was a little too slick to ever be the right one for me.

Oh, well. At least my cat likes sleeping on him.

The other day over lunch, my friend recounted a story. She was presiding over an afternoon meeting in the conference room. Already tired and cranky from a full morning preparing, she was greeted by an array of half-empty coffee cups and paper trash scattered across the conference table. Even her coworker’s laptop was still on the table, while he went to lunch, his last power point slide still visible on the projection screen. This was the third time in one month.

Although cleanup would only take a few moments, she was already running late. They all used the conference room when their offices couldn’t accommodate enough clients. She thought his lack of consideration was inexcusable.

She kept her emotions in check until after her meeting. She sought out her coworker. By then her anger was out of proportion to the offense. The minor incident turned into a major shouting match.

Most people would agree that she had every right to be mad. Yet after her “blow up” she felt worse. The small inconvenience wasn’t worth jeopardizing her relationship with her coworker.


Prodded by an article I had read that morning, I couldn’t help drawing a parallel. A new policy by the Forest Service calls for letting more fires burn. Controlled burning of grasslands and forests has been used for thousands of years. The “burn” stimulates plant germination, replenishes the ground with valuable nutrients and thins out trees. It is necessary, for the health of the forest and grassland ecology. Nature has done it for centuries, with lightning strikes.

Anger is like a fire. It can be very destructive, or, handled correctly, it can renew. Smothering anger is only a temporary fix. It will pop up again, often with greater intensity. Don’t repress your anger. Control the burn!

BEFORE you confront someone, use one of these techniques to let off steam and reduce stress.

  • Exercise. Anger is a great way to energize your workout. Exercise releases stress and increases endorphins.
  • Write. Whether you keep it or delete it, put your feelings down in words.
  • Hit something. Inanimate and soft! A pillow or a punching bag.
  • Cry. Doesn’t everybody feel better after a good cry?
  • Dance. Turn up the music and dance.

Tired of nagging?

How many times do I have to tell you to blah-blah-blah!”  Nagging. It’s just not that sexy.

Let’s face it. We have a long to-do list and we’d sure like some help getting things done. The problem comes in when we hound our spouse to do a task that’s been on the list for, well, eons. He pushes back or ignores our pleas. We feel irritated or dejected. Nobody is happy.

The bottom line is that women want to see their man as a hero…their hero. But we women don’t seem to know how ask without being mean. When you nag him, he can’t win. Even if he does what you want, he feels blackmailed. Nobody wins. Yuck! You don’t want that!

So you’re all excited about getting what you want from your man, right?

Yay! Now how do you do it?


Here are 3 simple tips to help you turn your nagging into bragging (on your man):

1. GET CLEAR. Describe what you want in specific words so that he can see a crystal clear picture of the outcome you want.

I want you to paint our bedroom with this can of paint by the Friday before Easter.

2. GET PROUD. Do what it takes to trust your own thinking. Embrace your desires. Smile!

Believe that what you want is actually good for both of you and for your relationship.

3. ASK. Don’t be wishy-washy or apologize. Use bon-bons instead of bombs.

I want this because…tell him why you want it. i.e., “Painting the bedroom will help me feel supported and proud of our home”


One reader told me she got her husband to paint the bedroom when she suggested they do it together…naked!

What’s your favorite way to get what you want from your man, without nagging?

Please leave comments on my blog

or Facebook page

Thanks, and happy bragging!

Play for Life: A Feel-Good Guide to Boost Your Brain Power, Spark Your Creativity and Inspire More Fun

Do you want to play?

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email. We will never, ever sell, rent or share your email.

Join 664 other followers

Follow us on Twitter

My Community

%d bloggers like this: