Within families and groups there are many different behaviors and coping strategies that people adopt.
Often to gain control of the situation or their lives…
This is not usually a conscious decision as many people may not even know they behave this way.
However, over the years I have been working with people and indeed in my own personal life, I have begun to realize that I have no control over the way people behave, what they do or say.
I have learned to accept that it is a waste of time getting upset about such things because it goes nowhere and at the end of the day, it is only me getting upset.
Why Does This Matter?
Understanding this is crucially important for your sanity as a carer because you cannot change the way other people think or behave…
Much as you would like to or indeed try to.
You see, you only know what you know.
And to get inside someone else’s head is not only impossible but it will cause you so much unnecessary grief.
So what am I talking about?
When You Need Help
Well some people can never accept a suggestion..
They have to come back with a counter offer.
For example, you may decide to meet up or send a care roster around the family to help get people on board.
Some people will accept this and say that is fine. I will adjust my schedule to fit in.
Another may want to change everything and nothing works for them.
They want to meet up at a different place or change the whole roster around.
There’s Always One…
Now for some there will be a genuine reason for changing things around.
But I am talking about the person who consistently makes things difficult and never agrees to anything.
You know, there is always a counter offer or for some reason they can’t work with others.
These people appear to have control everything.
They may not realize consciously that they are behaving in such a way, but you see the trends.
That one family member that just will not fit in with everyone.
The question you may need to ask though, is this person happy?
Because often they are not.
Do they fit into any of these scenarios? Read more here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/tamara-star/7-habit-of-chronically-unhappy-people_b_6174000.html
Here’s What You Do
So how are you going to handle this even if you know the person is unhappy or just obstructive?
You can try asking them to organize a time to meet up or get them to do the roster in the first place.
Put it back on them before you even start to suggest something.
While this may work, be prepared for it not to work because these people have worked on the counter offer principle.
They may not want to change or believe there is some weakness in saying “yes that is fine”.
How To Deal With Uncooperative Relatives
Now I am not saying that everyone has to fit in with your plan or suggestion or that saying “No it does not work for me” is not okay.
What I am talking about it the person who consistently comes back with counter offers and tries to manipulate every situation that occurs.
Nothing will be satisfactory for them.
See more on how to deal with uncooperative relatives here: http://www.wikihow.com/Deal-With-Difficult-Relatives
You’re Not Alone…
Such a situation is really difficult because the danger for you is to get into making up your own stories which may or may not be true or indeed have any relevance.
The people who behave in such a manner can be anyone in your life, but it is more difficult when it is family member.
You may just want to meet up to keep in contact or there may be a crisis where everyone needs to pull together for the good of a particular family member like an elderly parent.
How To Avoid The Stress
There are no simple or easy answers to handling these situations however, one thing I can say…
Keep it in perspective and do not try to second guess what is behind the person’s behavior.
It will do your head in and create unnecessary stress for you.
You might find some useful tips in this article https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/communication-success/201406/how-spot-and-stop-manipulators
You Can Only Change Yourself
Remember though, you cannot change anyone that does not want to change.
You cannot make anyone do what they don’t want to do or won’t do.
You can only change the way you behave, think or manage the situation.
Creating added stress in your life is counterproductive for you.
Important Questions To Ask…
So ask yourself the following:
- Why do I want this person to help?
- What are my reasons for getting people together?
- Is this worth my energy to keep trying and getting either rejected or counter offers coming back?
- What would be the worst thing that could happen if I didn’t include this person?
- What are my motives?
- How can I make this situation better for me?
Be Careful Not To Waste Your Energy
You see, in this world, you are only responsible for yourself and your own mental health.
What other people do, think or say, really is nothing to do with you.
Yes, it is hard as no one wants to feel alone, isolated or overburdened especially when you are the one left with the role of caring.
Playing happy families may be your way of coping but the reality is, often happy families are a myth.
Creating you own happy self is paramount.
So instead of trying to get families together or to help when they don’t want to is wasting your energy.
Find support from others, either friends or organizations.
This is where you should be spending your energy.
A Strategy That Supports You
So develop a strategy that supports you rather than destroys you.
Focus on an area that works for you rather than against you.
This way, your role of caring will have a much higher return for your emotional investment.
Well, no it isn’t but necessary for your survival, personal satisfaction and happiness.
To find out more on happiness, read this: http://www.lifecoachexpert.co.uk/whyishappinesssoimportant.html