“The way a person talks about other people in front of you is how they will talk about you in front of other people.”–David Gerrold
My friend SF titan David Gerrold was on a podcast recently, waiting to go on a show discussing Star Trek when he heard another guest bad-mouthing people venomously. His heart sank, and he hung up, deciding not to be a part of such a hate-fest. Luckily, the host understood that something bad had happened, and rescheduled the call for another time.
David’s point was that you need to be careful with whom you share a platform; you lend them legitimacy. Or…they lend YOU illegitimacy. People presume that water is seeking its own level.
So often when a client or friend tells me of a bad relationship they are trapped in, when you ask about how the person behaved BEFORE the relationship began, the clues were right there, in things that the person said or did…or said about what they did, or did about what they said. Here are some warning signs to pay attention to.
- Talking smack about previous relationships. If every previous relationship was bad…THEY are the problem. They are either a bad relationship magnet, or they are blaming others for their own dysfunction.
- Talking rudely to others. Either in your presence, or bragging about things they said to put-down people they perceive as having wronged them. While everyone enjoys a good “burn” now and then, be wary of people who seem to find opportunities to insult people too often. That thin skin will one day be triggered by your slightest mistake.
- People who deny doing things that you KNOW they did. Beware of “gas-lighters”. Sociopathic liars or the garden variety fibber. Especially the kind who, when finally cornered, just laugh and say they were kidding. Such people are nightmares once your finances and personal integrity are legally enmeshed, let along your deepest and most vulnerable emotions.
- People who cannot admit that they were wrong, ever. I actually ran into a guy who BRAGGED that he never admitted he was wrong, as if this was a sterling character trait. No doubt some consider that strength. They are fools.
- People who cannot keep their word. PAY ATTENTION. This may be the most critical thing about speech: not only do they tell the truth about what is past, but do their promises and statements accurately predict their future behavior?
What they say, what they do, what they say about what they do, and what they do about what they say. Remember that you will become what you surround yourself with. Whether “just” friends, or a life partner, be careful.
We’ll be discussing core concepts surrounding relationships in our FINDING AND NURTURING YOUR SOULMATE class, totally FREE, beginning this Saturday the 16th. Join us at: www.soulmateprocess.com