I'm copyrighting that and I am going to turn it into a t-shirt.
A few weeks ago I went to a conflict management training and we had to do this exercise where we train ourselves to not be triggered emotionally by being called names. You had to think of the three people who drive you most nuts in the world and write down all the adjectives that describe them. Then with a partner you have them call you that name. Once you're called the name you have to say "sometimes I can be ______, but right now I need to move beyond that so I can handle the issue at hand."
I did this with my co-worker Shari. I called her "dishonest" and all the color drained from her face and then she looked like she had eaten something really tart...then it was my turn.
"Debbie, you are always playing the victim".
My jaw dropped and I resembled something that looks like a fish out of water.
The first inclination is that you want to ask why, then you want to refute the comment and then you just want to win the conversation by proving somehow that you are something completely other than what you were just called. And this is how arguments and conflicts happen and all progress just stops.
We've turned this exercise into an office game....throwing around accusations such as "controlling", "dishonest", and the latest and greatest "emotionally needy". Where did that one come from? .....ah...our favorite ex-husband, Mr.3. There hasn't been an update on Mr.3 for a while and that has been by design. In January, we almost caught him. 10 hours behind sort of deal....and there is another woman to add to the "ex-Mr.3 sorority". She's wonderful and amazing.....and even though Mr.3 is a horrible man he has managed to find some pretty damn cool ladies. I'm not sure if I am going to go into this new chapter on the blog just yet.... but I would like to announce that I've started writing the book. The other day however Mr.3 sent her a painful heartfelt email that is filled with empty promises and also trashes every other woman he has been with. I haven't seen the full email but I've been given the cliff notes in which I'm accused of being emotionally needy and basking in the glow of Mr.3's accomplishments at the MEC.
I admit that I had the' fish on dry-land moment', then I wanted to find all the email proof from him that refuted what he said, and then..... I stopped.
I stopped completely.....
and I began to laugh.
Cause it is just like the conflict management class.....he aimed every word to hurt me, to drag me down into a pit of despair, to question myself, to completely throw me off track.
Its failed... and I'm gonna make the t-shirt to prove it.