We’ve all done it. We’ve gone along with something, participated in something, or put our needs on hold to fix someone else’s problem. We are all responsible for ourselves and when someone purposely chooses to make a wrong decision winding them in trouble, and may continuously do so, it is not only not your job to fix it, you are also doing them a disservice as they will never learn to stop doing this if everyone runs to their aid every time and bails them out. We all need a hand at times, and it’s more than OK to ask for help, but when someone tries to drag you into their drama and take all of your time to satisfy their needs, that’s not OK.
I’ve talked about Emotional Vampires in a previous blog, and one of the tactics some of them use to suck out time and energy is to get you to co-sign their bullshit. To validate the drama they have caused themselves so they can continue to tell the story they want to tell, likely that they are hard done by, have bad luck, or that no one loves them. It is not your job to change that story for them. Your job is to tell your own story, to make sure your needs are met, that you are living a life you are proud of, that you are surrounding yourself with love and encouragement, each of us has that responsibility. There’s a difference between someone asking for help and someone asking you to jump all in to a mess they’ve created and put your life on hold.
Before I walked on this path there were many times I was guilty of this. I would avoid things, not wanting to live in the real world, I let things slide, hoping they would go away, when they wouldn’t, and would get worse from neglect, I would cry foul and try to drag in anyone I could to run to my rescue, and I always did. I got a bit of a high out of it, and it was my way of testing whether I had love in my life. The only problem is, I was stretching out the limits of that love by creating circumstances that were well within my control but would I let them spin out until they were a mess. I would call out in a fit of tears, begging for help, and when someone did come to my aid I’d get that high, but those highs didn’t last long, and soon I was back in the dark pit of despair, letting my walls come crashing in, and neglecting myself and my life until the next crises. I am grateful to no longer be living my life this way, and when I see it now in others I know that running in to save the day is not helping them, and it’s never going to make things better.
We can be there for those we love, we can support them, and yes, we can help them out, as long as they are helping themselves as well, as long as they are also taking action, working towards a solution, and learning from the mistakes of their past, we, may even learn along with them, but there has to be work on their part. Picking up the pieces, fixing someone else’s problems for them doesn’t help them, and it certainly doesn’t help you if you’ve put them before your own needs. When someone does come calling for help, ask yourself if you are being asked to work alongside them for a solution, or are you being asked to doing all the heavy lifting yourself, and, is this heavy lifting the same heavy lifting you keep getting asked to do time and time again by the same person? Sometimes the most loving thing we can do for someone is to stop helping them if they’re not helping themselves, if what they’re doing is harming themselves, and if helping them is hurting you. Stand tall SLAYER and ask yourself what is right, do the facts all add up, or are you just the fall guy meant to save the day?
SLAY OF THE DAY: Are there people in your life who always seem to be in crises? Do you always seem to come to you for a solution? Do you always jump to help? In thinking about those people and those situations, are those people not taking steps to help themselves? Are they getting themselves into the same situations time and time again? And, are you fixing it time and time again? How does it make you feel when you do? Are you exhausted? Do you feel used? Do you see that you have a choice? Do you understand the difference between helping someone out and co-signing their bullshit and taking all of the burden from them? Which do you think is the healthier choice for you? Remember SLAYER, it’s not up to you to fix someone else’s life, your job is to maintain your own, and a part of that is making sure you’re not sacrificing that life to help someone who has no regard for their own. SLAY on!
S – self L – love A – appreciate Y – you