“My sister treats me badly.”

“My sister treats me badly.”
February 24, 2016 Ann Weiser Cornell

Focusing Tip #498


“My sister lashed out at me in front of everyone. I feel like she picks on me because she can.”


A Reader writes:
I am divorced, 60, and returned to work 4 years ago. Prior to the divorce, I left a good job in journalism to raise my 3 children. I work for my sister in her office. I am very grateful for the opportunity and have developed new skills. I get along with coworkers. However, my sister treats me differently. We had a situation where important paperwork was sent out containing errors. She lashed out at me in front of everyone. It came out that someone else had done the paperwork. She turned to the employee and said, “Oh, OK,” and walked away. I feel like she picks on me because she can. I need this job while I search for another one.

Dear Reader:
What happened to you was unjust and unfair, for sure. But I suggest you not be so sure what is going on inside your sister.

You will probably need to have a private conversation with her in which you let her know that the way she is treating you is affecting your ability to work with her. But before you do that, there is an inner conversation, using Focusing, that can prepare you for that talk with your sister.

You would take some time, get settled and feel your body supported, and then sense in the inner area of your body…inviting “something in you” that has feelings about how your sister treats you.

When you do this, you are able to be with the feelings rather than getting taken over by them. You will be able to explore what bothers this part of you the most about what is happening. You can let it know you hear it.

This might seem unbelievable…but doing this can actually calm down your feelings and change your perspective.

Then when you have the meeting with your sister, you’ll be able to be clear about your needs, and listen to her side. She might even be sorry about how she treats you, and doesn’t know how to change. You can send her over here to Focusing Resources for ways to explore and change her own feelings!

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