I have a desire to have a better relationship with my mom, BUT I am still thinking things that keep me from creating that result. When we’re alone together, I find myself super annoyed and not open, judging everything she says and does. I want a better relationship but I don’t want to do the work of being curious…why? Why don’t I want to be curious about her? I just don’t like her. I think that’s a fact, and I don’t want to get to know her better because I’m judging her as wrong and I don’t want to dislike her more. (Which is funny, because the result I’m creating now is really not great.)
I do want to like her more, and I suppose I can ask myself better questions, instead of feeling at the effect of my “true” thought that I don’t like her. How can I like her more?
Well, I just had another opportunity and had a better interaction…because I wasn’t thinking “I don’t like her” the whole time… I think I put too much pressure on myself to try to like her more than I do, and the cognitive dissonance is too great.
I suppose I can start where I am…I don’t like parts of her…but I can try to look for and focus on the parts I do like. And the more I look for those things the more I’ll probably find evidence for the thought “there are parts of her I like”.
I noticed that in our first conversation this morning, sitting side-by-side in the car, I had a running commentary in my brain while she was talking…judgment, judgment, judgment. Then the second time around I was more present and looking her in the eyes, feeling more engaged because I wasn’t letting my brain just run wild with judgment.
I can see the judgment doesn’t serve me, her, or our relationship, but in the moment during those conversations, it’s so hard to remember to drop it. I think the solution is to not try to get rid of the judgment, but to let it be there, and choose to engage despite the judgment…instead of what I have been doing, which is to judge her despite anything good she may do or say.
Anyway, thanks for letting me do a TDL here. Perhaps my unintentional model is:
C: mom exists
T: I want to like her more (but I don’t…which I know is 2 thoughts)
A: think about how I don’t actually like her but I “should”, beat myself up for not liking her more, look at and see all the things I don’t like about her (and myself), wish I could create a better relationship, I don’t really engage because I’m in my head the whole time, don’t decide to find things I do like, fight my primal brain and my desire for what I actually want…
R: I keep wanting but not acting on my desire to like her more
Any thoughts? 🙂