I’ve noticed that when times are stressful – and when are they not?- that you tend to resort to some behaviors which seem comforting but are not really helpful. In fact, these behaviors only worsen the situation. They hurt you and they hurt your family and they damage your relationships. I think it would be to everyone’s benefit if we looked at some of these destructive tendencies squarely so you can deal with them honestly. I realize that sometimes you don’t feel well, but you don’t need to feel well to do the right thing. Besides, doing the right thing will help you feel better.
- You eat when there is no one around, sneaking and hiding, like an alcoholic sneaking a drink. You do not share your treats; you need to eat socially more often. Furthermore, you steal food. (From the kids Easter baskets, etc.)
- You are very lazy. Get up and do things for yourself. Run your own errands. You have two beautifully functioning legs; be grateful for them and use them because they are a gift and are not guaranteed to always be there. Your husband and the children are not put here for your convenience.
- Keep regular hours.
- Stop hiding yourself, especially in bed, especially from your family.
- Smile more than sigh.
- Strike the phrases “I know” and “I was right” from your speech. Stop being so anxious to prove how right you are.
- Give sincere compliments, not flattery; don’t gush.
- You are precious in the Father’s sight. You don’t need to brag about yourself or puff yourself up in any way.
- Stop numbing yourself with shopping, things, food and entertainment.
- Say nice things, not snotty jokes that aren’t even funny. It is unnecessary to fill in awkwardness with jokes and chatter.
- Air grievances, if necessary, in a calm, loving, straight-forward way and not with snide comments and not by avoidance.
- Interact purposefully with the children.
- Do not blame-shift. Stop casting around for the one whose fault it is.
- Carry the burden of forgiveness willingly, cheerfully, with prayer, daily.
- Ask people about themselves and listen without waiting to pounce in, without trying to “relate”, without saying “me too.”
You know I have your best interest at heart.