Guilt by Association

  I was in a good mood till you came home.


  I told you its unacceptable to talk to me that way.


  It doesn’t work for me when you don’t clean up after yourself     


AAAAGGGGG~ Those ugly Defenses!!!                         



       The other day I caught myself pursing my lips while on the phone with an old friend. We were discussing money she owed me from a few years back. The air between us got awkward.


       More than three decades ago I had made an agreement with myself to never again ‘lend’ money without deciding inwardly I was truly okay with never getting it back, no matter what the amount. That way, I would not be disappointed. I would not give something I couldn’t afford to lose and I would be pleasantly surprised and appreciative if it got returned to me.


       That system has worked really well for me. So why all of a sudden did I find myself pursing my lips over a measly forty bucks? My tone changed on the phone toward her and though she is someone I feel great fondness toward, some button was definitely being pushed. What was it???


       Okay, first success, I noticed!…this is progress! I am aware I am in a defense. My body is giving me a big clue…I’m pursing my lips and my tone is not warm and when I check into my heart center…yep, it ain’t open.


      Second thing…I ask myself, “What’s going on?” It’s not the money I care about so what is it? As I reflect on the situation I start by noticing what I am feeling from talking to her. I feel hurt, not appreciated, taken for granted and not valued. Just because of the money?   


       Third step…I ask myself,  “What is the story I’m making up in my head about the situation? Nope, turns out its not about the money at all. It’s that she hasn’t returned my calls in a timely manner or answered my emails. I’ve gone out of my way to support her, because I enjoy her. The story I made up in my head, she’s no longer interested in investing in our friendship. Ouch! No wonder I’m pursing my lips.


       Third, I try to put myself in her position to see if can figure out the other side of the fence. I suspect she’s feeling uncomfortable, not knowing what to say to me, and then, opps oh yes, there’s that complicated factor, I’m longtime friends with her recent former boss who fired her. Guilt by association.


       Fourth, Seek till I find a place of compassion. What’s the story she’s making up about me? Okay, I melt, my heart softens. Perhaps she embarrassed thinking her former boss is complaining about her and she’s scared about money even though she starts her new job in another month.


       Last, be willing to check out the story I’m making up. Call her back and share with her the story I’m making up in my head…


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