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You Teach Others How To Treat You

You teach others how to treat you
You teach others how to treat you

In this week’s Success Newsletter, I would like to reveal the ways we teach others how to treat us – for the better and worse.

First a quick update:

“The Secret to being feminine without being controlled by men”
Read the transcript of the interview I gave to Christelyn D. Karazin of on the topic of what it really means to be feminine. In this part of the transcript, I reveal the single secret for a woman to be able to express her femininity without giving away her power or being controlled by the man and; avoiding old gender roles.

Follow me on Twitter – You can now choose to follow me and receive a few words of wisdom on Twitter: @Behavior_Expert

Now, let’s talk about the ways we teach others how to treat us – for the better and worse.

In numerous articles, I have written about the need to set one’s boundaries, and to do so in every area and relationship of one’s life – personal and professional.

What is a boundary?

A boundary simply refers to a specified limit set by you of what is and what is not acceptable behavior and treatment by another person towards you.

The behavior can be expressed physically, mentally, emotionally and even financially; it can be in the form of things done and things not done – things withheld.

Love, honesty, the complete truth, affection and so forth can all be withheld.

Of course, your response to someone’s behavior – when one steps over the boundaries – determines the future progress or evolution of your relationship.

We teach other people how to treat us based on what we allow them to do – the behavior we deem by others as acceptable. If you allow a person to slap you a second and third time, then you are clearly saying ‘you can slap me.’ Read my article “The link between new boundaries and respect”.

If, however, you choose to say “No, you cannot slap me…if you want to have a relationship with me, you cannot treat me this way…” then, you are clearly stating your boundaries and limits. Of course, a few other steps are involved and you need to take more action than simply stating your boundaries (saying ‘No”, reducing guilt, etc.); read my article “5 steps and tips to setting your boundaries”.

Accordingly, while it might be obvious that the way you allow others to treat you will determine the way they will continue to treat you, the converse is also true: the way you treat them will eventually determine how they will treat and respond to you.

For example, think about someone in your life who is unreliable, undependable or flaky.

For how long have they been behaving this way?

Now, think about the way you respond to them.

Do you invite them to every dinner, event or party?

Have you stopped inviting them to events?

Do you turn to them for help or in times of need?

Do you stop and say “No, I won’t invite Jane because she is so unreliable; she is always late and in fact, she might not even show up”?

Have you stopped trusting and opening up to Jane?

Jane’s pattern of behavior and actions has resulted in her friends recognizing that she is unreliable and undependable. Now, her friends have stopped inviting her or have reduced the number of invitations she receives; her friends are shrinking the trust they show her and the friendship they share.

Thus, Jane taught others how to treat her by the way she behaves towards them.

Still using the same example, think again about your friend who is unreliable, undependable or flaky.

Do you or have you responded to him/her in exactly the same way?

In other words, do you also find yourself being flaky or unreliable towards him/her since you conclude “Well, Jane won’t mind since she is flaky anyway, and she cancels at the last moment…”?

The point is that Jane will eventually lose her friends or she will be surrounded by people who are also flaky and unreliable.

Jane has been teaching people how to treat her because of the way she treats them.

The point or lesson here is that you also teach people how to treat you by the way you treat them.

Like attracts like.

People with the same values congregate and become friends.

Honest, kind and compassionate people attract honest, kind and compassionate people.

Thieves, liars and dishonest people also attract and hang out with thieves, liars and dishonest people.

However, you might also argue that you treat people well – with kindness, respect, care and concern but they do not treat you this way. You might explain that they do not respond to you in the same way as you treat them.

Therefore, consider the message that you have given them based on your behavior.

Although, you might argue that you are kind, caring and respectful towards them, your dominant behavior is that you are not kind, caring and respectful towards yourself because you allow them to disrespect you.

Accordingly, they conclude “She doesn’t respect herself, so why should we respect her?”

You might even unknowingly or subconsciously be demonstrating neediness, desperation, insecurity or clinginess. Your friends will be responding to those emotional drives which are based on insecurity, low self-esteem or a lack of a feeling of deservedness.

We truly and really have much more control over our lives than we realize or choose to admit; we truly and really have much more control over the friends and people we attract in our lives than we consciously realize or choose to admit.

Become emotionally aware – how do you behave and treat other people in your life?

How do you allow others to behave and treat you?

Finally, be willing to say “No” and be willing let go of that which don’t really want (including so-called friends who don’t value you) to make room for that which you do truly want – real friends who love and prize you.

And if you need help to gain emotional strength, consider a one-on-one private session with me. Watch the video here.

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I wish you the best and remind you “Believe in yourself -You deserve the best!”

Patrick Wanis Ph.D.
Celebrity Life Coach, Human Behavior & Relationship Expert & SRTT Therapist

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