“Any person capable of angering you becomes your master; he can anger you only when you permit yourself to be disturbed by him.”

~Epictetus~

 

I have used this one extensively. I feel that this goes for any emotion. I feel that if someone manipulates you through your emotions, you are their puppet. Speaking from personal experience, it’s extremely difficult to recognize and overcome. But once you recognize it, it gets easier to manage. Especially if the person has very little emotional worth to you. As in someone you barely know says something hurtful to you. If it’s someone you love, it’s obviously much more difficult. You  have much more emotional investment.

Once I recognized that the person was repeatedly pushing the same button to hurt me, it was easier to not get hurt. That button doesn’t work anymore. They would find a different button, which after an even shorter time wouldn’t work anymore. Until eventually there were no more buttons to push and the emotional machine they used was broken. Which meant they couldn’t control my emotions anymore. I didn’t instantly react to the pain, but recognized it for what it was; a defense mechanism for them to avoid dealing with the situation. A diversion.

This is just my scenario; again, my personal experience.  Everyone is different. What works for me may or may not work for you. This wasn’t an overnight thing for me either. And I had outside professional help to get me to realize what was happening. But once I did, things started to change for the better not just in my relationship but my world in general. I was not wounded by the callous things some people would say like I would’ve been a year or two before. Their opinion meant nothing to me. I’m not saying that my emotions are locked in a steel box or anything. Acquaintances/strangers saying hurtful things still stings but what I’m saying is that mean people don’t affect me as much as they used to. They have no power over me. The only power they have is to show me that they are horrible individuals and that I don’t want to associate with them. If I do have to associate with them, it will be as little as possible. Life is too short. Just my humble opinion.

 

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