You may not think something as simple as knowing the Law of Fair Exchange can significantly impact someone’s life. But it truly does, and here’s how:
Everything in the universe is balanced and governed by laws – gravity being one of them. Can you imagine if we didn’t have gravity?
Positive and negative, night and day, creation and destruction, digestion and excretion. Everything, including narcissism and altruism – or giving and taking, saying yes and no, having and doing is all balanced. When we are out of fair exchange with ourselves, that’s when we will experience negative emotions.
The labels we give ourselves and the perceptions we create that build those labels cause emotions that can feel negative.
How do you know when you are out of fair exchange?
You are full of resentment
You have more negative than positive thoughts.
You are constantly overwhelmed.
You are everyone’s go-to and have no time for yourself.
You are living a life of quiet desperation, wondering how you will get what you want.
You are the yes person. Yes, to everyone else, but saying no to you.
You are exhausted and want to run away for some “peace & quiet.”
You have an hour spare but don’t know which of your many things to do for yourself, so you procrastinate.
You are constantly feeling guilty.
I think that’s enough on the list for now 🙂
Here are 4 things you can do right now.
Say no and watch what happens. When we constantly say yes to everyone else, we rob people of accountability and responsibility. Look at your boundaries – if you don’t value them, I can guarantee no one else will.
When you live in resentment, overwhelm, and never-ending busyness, you are heading toward burnout. Nice guys don’t finish first; they run out of steam for their goals. But, you might say, I’m not trying to be resentful; I’m trying to be positive, friendly, and generous to keep everyone happy. If you give more than you are receiving, you will never be able to maintain a positive mind. You are, however, saved by resentment. Trying to avoid the negative feelings and only focusing on the positive is impossible. You’re not created to be positive without negative. The more you give without giving to yourself, the more resentful you will feel, forcing you to become more self-first/selfish/put yourself first – an excellent way of saying narcissistic. The more you put yourself first, the more chance you have of not starting the cycle again. Resentment forces us to change.
Ask yourself what’s the secret plan you have for saying yes. Yes! Selfless people have a plan. It might be unconscious, but when you do something nice for someone, you feel great, and they owe you. See what happens when someone does something nice for you; you feel obligated to equal the good deed, right? Or you can feel guilty about something in the past that has happened. It keeps that cycle going.
Schedule one hour a day for you. I know it’s tricky, but it is doable. For example, I had a client with a very sick husband who felt guilty for wanting some time out. But, if she burned out at the end of the day, the family wouldn’t be able to cope, so it became necessary for her to prioritise herself. Her ‘homework’ was to give herself an hour a day to do what she wanted, and it didn’t matter if she read a magazine at a cafe or went for a walk or a yoga class. By reclaiming her energy, everyone benefitted.
When you are being altruistic or giving to everyone around you, people-pleasing, and being the yes person, you have a hidden agenda deep down. Often shame and guilt plays a big factor in altruism. We all think someone will judge us for being selfish although you have plenty of evidence that you’ll criticise yourself more harshly than anyone else will. We think we must make up for all the pains of our childhoods, but have a good look at that, as the challenges and the tough times you went through created a strong, resilient, and purposeful person. Wanting to protect your loved ones from anything negative in life, as we wish for our children, makes kids who can’t cope with tough times. Saying no and holding them accountable and responsible for their wants is a great solution.
Are you making life too easy for your children? One of my daughters was into horses and had a part-time job while in school. “Mum, I want a new bridle” (there was always a long list of needing something new for her horse.) So I said, lovingly, I’m sure – “you buy it with your own money,” and she looked at me horrified and said, “but I’ve just worked for 8 hours to get this money.” Exactly! Now she values her money and mine. So don’t rob yourself and your kids of accountability and responsibility.
Yes, there has to be give and take, but make sure that you are not doing all the giving and ‘they’ are not doing all the taking – in your perception.
Now, watch the positive thinking come back online.
I work with you and alongside you as your personal life coach. For years I have been studying human behaviour as it’s vital to know what we do and also what we don’t do that stands in the way of our potential.
Being a life coach and facilitator affords me a very unique outlook in the way people live their lives. I’m extremely fortunate to have a set of skills that allows me to dissolve challenges and also the baggage or ‘bags of age’ that we carry around. These literally take up time and space in your life and when these are negative they can weigh us down and create reactions as well as signs and symptoms. Your mindset is that important.
certified facilitator of human behaviour and human potential