How To Set Boundaries With Men & Examples Of Healthy Boundaries

How to set boundaries with men examples Examples of healthy boundaries in relationships

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This is probably one of the hardest relationship topics I’ve ever tried to discuss. And this is the longest post I’ve ever written. It’s difficult mainly because boundaries are a very conceptual topic. What boundaries you might have someone else might not have, your boundaries might change with time or you might have a boundary you don’t even know about until it’s crossed. Learning how to set boundaries with men is not an easy task especially when we’ve been conditioned to give, give, give to our partners. In this post, I’m going to give you examples of healthy boundaries in relationships.

This post is really going to help you:
Understand why boundaries are necessary;
Identify what boundaries you have;
Identify moments when your boundaries are crossed; and
Understand the common ways boundaries are crossed and how to combat disrespectful behavior.

Why Learning How To Set Boundaries With Men Is Necessary

As women, we’ve been taught to give ourselves totally to our partners and hold nothing back. I don’t know if it’s from watching too many Disney movies or bad parenting advice to “play nice and share,” but women these days are finding themselves feeling lost, used, and walked all over in their dating lives.

You can go on any relationship forum and find constant posts on “Am I being used?” “I told him to stop doing this but he keeps doing X,Y,Z.” “My partner is doing X, am I overreacting?” These are posts about boundaries that were crossed. More often than not, these women “gave in” to the poor behavior and now are concerned about the state of their relationship and left feeling disrespected.

In the end of the day, learning how to set boundaries with men is not about CONTROL but about maintaining your own self esteem, mental health and self respect.
For this benefit ALONE we need to establish boundaries.
Because we all have felt that small sick feeling in the pit of our stomachs when a boundary has been pushed or cast aside and we didn’t give ourselves the chance to speak up.

Learning how to set boundaries with men is important whether you’re just dating casually or already married. Setting boundaries early will strengthen your relationships and take the guess work and miscommunication out of any encounter.

How to identify what boundaries you have:

Determining what boundaries we already have is the first step in being able to set them properly. A lot of times when I ask my friends where they see their relationships going or what they want out of their dating experiences I get, “oh, I don’t know, I just want to see where things go,” or “I’m just seeing my options, not decided on anything yet.”

This sort of wishy-washy mindset comes from the hopeful positive belief that if you keep things open, anything can happen. And that’s right, ANYTHING will happen and not necessarily things you wanted or expected.

Example) Jill has been dating Tom casually, she decided to keep things open and wasn’t ready to demand commitment. She was seeing him and a few other guys but she is sexually active with Tom only. After a sexual encounter with Tom, she notices that she’s getting pimples around her mouth and her genitals. At the Doctor’s office, it’s confirmed Tom gave her Herpes Virus 1 and she’ll be getting cold sores the rest of her life. She confronts Tom and finds out he’s also been dating around, a lot. This wasn’t what she wanted out of her open dating experience, but this was the result. (This actually happened to someone I know).

Terrible story, but life doesn’t play favorites and messed up things happen in the dating world all the time.

The key to establishing boundaries is to really THINK what you want out of any encounter, what you want out of your relationships, then determine your dealbreakers. These dealbreakers need to have consequences you stick with. Another essential part is to VOCALIZE your boundaries and ESPECIALLY WHEN THEY ARE CROSSED. Hell needs to be raised when a boundary is crossed.

Jill later decided she was done with these open relationships. She decided that saying no to the forever talking phase was a boundary she needed to set. She knew she was still a catch so she decided to only have sex AFTER she secured commitment first. A lot of men walked away after hearing her demands but one man stayed and took the time to date her properly. She married him 3 years later.

So thinking through what your values are, what you will and will not accept from a potential partner or the partner you already have, and then vocalizing + committing to creating consequences for poor behavior are how you identify and set boundaries.

How to identify when you’re boundaries are crossed

Sometimes we’re presented with a situation that is ambiguous. We’re not sure if we’re being disrespected or not.

There are are two ways that a boundary can be crossed and here are examples of non healthy boundaries in relationships

1) Someone violates what you’ve already expressed as something you didn’t like or felt comfortable with. Example: Jens boyfriend is always late to dates, even though she’s expressly told him she hates it.

2) Someone, through manipulation, misinformation, deceit and lies, gets you to step outside of what you would normally do otherwise if you had all the information. Ex: John tells his girlfriend Megan he’s meeting a friend for drinks at a local bar to catch up. In reality, he’s meeting at a bar where he knows his ex girlfriend works and the bar is having a girls night promotion. Megan finds out when another buddy tags him in pics accidentally. Megan would have said she was uncomfortable if she knew the whole truth upfront, but now John’s backpedaling and calling her controlling and jealous.

Sometimes when boundaries are crossed it happens unexpectedly and is more like someone line stepping to test the waters of how far they can go. In these situations, YOU MUST TRUST YOUR GUT. Logic will tell you that you don’t have all the information and that you shouldn’t react without being 100% sure of the situation. If your intuition is screaming out to you, most importantly LISTEN, then work to flush out the truth.

I’ve never regretted listening to my intuition. I have, however, deeply regretted not listening. Side with your intuition, ALWAYS.

Common ways boundaries are crossed and how to combat them.

1)Rudeness and Negging

Negging is a red pill phrase coined by pick up artists to give women backhanded insults and slights disguised as banter or flirting. Enough of these and your self esteem will start to tank.

I once dated a guy that insisted to find out my “celebrity fantasy.” He swore that everyone had a celebrity fantasy of someone they wanted to date and pushed me to tell him, but I honestly didn’t have a real answer for him. He then proceeded to tell me his fantasy was Jessica Alba. I don’t look anything like Jessica Alba and it kinda left a sour taste in my mouth like Is that what I need to look like for this guy to be attracted to me? Of course it didn’t work out but I was left feeling pretty low about myself after dating that guy.

This kind of behavior is just rude. You’ll really need to learn how to set boundaries with rude men. This and other types of rude behavior should not be tolerated. Things like lateness, excessive cheapness, inconsiderate behavior, pushiness, rude unnecessary pet names, and the like should not be tolerated.

How to combat?

Here is just one of the examples of healthy boundaries in relationships. You keep it simple and say something along the lines of, “Excuse me, but that was rude. I don’t like that.”

He’ll reply. “Why?” (A lot of times they know why, they just play dumb).

Be firm. “I shouldn’t have to explain myself but here’s why [insert why his behavior is rude]

If he tries to justify his behavior and minimize your feelings, it’s time to move on and stop dating him. Because some men don’t care if they’re rude or are hurting their partners feelings. And chances are that that’s not going to change. The dating phase is the BEST behavior he has to offer, so if rudeness is happening on the regular it’s time to stop seeing him.

If he tries to see your point of view and apologizes, it’s worth continuing to date him but keep an eye out for other rude behavior and incompatibilities.

2)Unintentional boundary crossing

Sometimes the guy has no clue that he’s stepping over your boundaries and he genuinely has good intentions in mind.

Ex: Jen has been dating Dan for a few months and things have been going well. It’s her birthday and he wants to be generous and take her to a nice surprise dinner. She gets all dressed up and is horrified to find out he planned a dinner at the World Trade Observatory 100+ floors above New York City. She never told Dan that she is terrified of heights. She knows she could not enjoy this dinner, but they’re already there.

How to combat? Nobody’s really in the wrong.

She should tell him that she really appreciates the gesture but would be happy to eat anywhere else. She should outright explain her fear of heights and why she wouldn’t enjoy this dinner.

At the end of the day a boundary is a boundary and if she continued her dinner, terrified, afraid and acting all weird, it could be misunderstood as ingratitude. Or she might get away with it and he’ll keep taking her to places that have high altitudes.

A high quality man will want his partner to have a good time and go somewhere else, even if it didn’t work out the way he planned.

A low quality man will push through her boundaries and try to minimize her fears b because he wants to eat there and enjoy the fantastic dinner that he had in mind FOR HIMSELF.

If you want to learn how to set boundaries with men when the boundary crossing is unintentional, the key here to to communicate these boundaries and be understanding of the situation. But also be firm in what you need.

Inappropriate behavior within a monogamous relationship

Whether you’ve just started going steady and have been married for years, it’s important to maintain your personal boundaries and self respect.

In long term relationships there’s always room for deceit and dishonesty. The hardest part of being in a relationship and dealing with issues is that it’s difficult to tell when to work on things or just cut your losses and leave. Nobody wants to put in months or years of emotional work and have to cut off what you’ve built, but at times that can be necessary.

THE MOST IMPORTANT THING TO DO IS TO REALLY KNOW AND UNDERSTAND YOUR PARTNER BEFORE CHILDREN ARE INVOLVED. Once children are involved, it’s much harder for your partner to feel motivated to change their behavior since children serve as a sort of anchor that keeps relationships together. Too many people stay together for the kids.

Here is a list of behavior that I would consider unacceptable. If you find yourself combatting these issues it’s best to nip them in the bud by standing your ground and raising hell over it to correct the behavior or LEAVING. Once you let this behavior slip with a pat on the wrist, it becomes more acceptable and harder to change.

-Cheating of any kind. Emotional or physical
-Sexting
-Compulsive gambling
-Alcoholism
-Drug use
-Complete laziness with housework
-Lack of job or financial contribution whatsoever
-Physical abuse- hitting, forced sex, slapping, unwanted touching, etc.
-Emotional abuse: name calling, ignoring, bullying etc.
-Porn addiction: once porn takes the place of actual sex, it’s an addiction.

This is an inexhaustive list but, for most women, these are the biggest deal breakers. To establish strong boundaries for these examples the consequences should be severe.

Ex:
Not Severe: “If you keep going like this, I’ll leave”

Severe: “I DO NOT LIKE SAID BEHAVIOR. If I ever see you do this again, I will pack my bags, move out and change my number.” This is one of the better examples of healthy boundaries in relationships.

The first response is an ultimatum and a vague one at that. The second response is firm and specific of what will happen. It’s essential to always do what you say you’ll do, that way actions with consequences hold a lot more weight.

At the end of the day, WE are responsible for what we allow into our lives.

4)How To Set Sexual Boundaries With Men

We live in a world where sex is free. No strings attached relationships and FWB make it so easy for men to have sex with with little or nothing to offer!

In my opinion sex is probably the most intimate physical act you can do with someone. (It shouldn’t be like shaking hands!). And it requires trust and vulnerability.

I’ve heard sooooo many stories from women who thought they would be having an enjoyable sexual encounter but end up being touched in places they didn’t want to be touched, pressured into acts they didn’t want to do, pressured to go without protection or realizing during sex that the condom was removed, degraded or insulted during sex, or outright assaulted while they sleep!

I’m not saying all men are like this (most are not) but if you don’t know the person, how can you be sure that this won’t be you?

Now before I proceed on how to combat this type of behavior and avoid it at any cost, I am in no way blaming women for having endured this. All men should have the common sense and human decency not to engage in this kind of behavior and are 100% at fault if they do. However, women need to be aware that the fun encounter they signed up for can EASILY turn left and they need the tools in how to handle them safely.

I advocate against drinking on dates. If you drink it should be no more than 1 drink an hour. Maintaining personal boundaries becomes much harder when intoxicated and 9 times out of 10, these one night stands are happening after a drunken rampage. If you can’t be expected to drive a car while drunk, something you do with ease on a daily basis, how can you be expected to make other responsible decisions…decisions you won’t regret.

If you do have sex and any of the following happens to you:
-being touched in places you don’t want to be touched
-pressured into acts you don’t want to do,
-pressured to go without protection or
-realizing during sex that the condom was removed,
-degraded or insulted during sex, or
-outright assaulted while you sleep

END THE ENCOUNTER AND LEAVE IMMEDIATELY.

I don’t care if he’s about to bust and seems like he’s enjoying it. I don’t care if he pouts and sulks over it. Tell him outright, you cannot continue sex because he disrespected you. Tell him to get off and put his pants on. Be angry about it so he knows it’s not sex play.

And trust me it will be the most awkward, awful sex he has ever had. But he will never forget that he crossed a boundary and that it gave him the bluest balls ever! And if you choose to see him again (I wouldn’t) the chances that he would try that maneuver again on you will be greatly diminished.

Let me tell you a quick story.

My friend was dating this guy we knew from school. She was sleeping with him and he didn’t put a condom on and busted inside her! She was stressed and worrying about getting pregnant. She was late that month but thankfully got her period. But before she knew he made her take a pregnancy test in front of her. When it turned out she wasn’t pregnant, they both sighed with relief.

Later on she sleeps with him again and he doesn’t put on a condom AGAIN! And he busts in her again! And this time she softly tells him, “Why, why would you do this again when we just got through this stressful situation?” This time she takes a Plan B.

He asked her what she would have done if she was pregnant. She told him she would terminate. He was shocked and said, “I’m spanish, we don’t do that. I should have a say too!”

Moral of the story: my friend really needs to kick this guy to the curb. He obviously didn’t learn his lesson the first time because he keeps on trying to bust in her despite how much the pregnancy scares stress her out and how much she requests he wrap it up! AND he feels so entitled to her body that he should have a say on whether she has an abortion or not!

At the end of the day, us ladies need to protect ourselves and ONLY engage in sex when our partners have proven WORTHY. That means commitment. Otherwise we’re just putting our lives, we’ll-being, health and mental health on the line for a guy who obviously isn’t worth it.

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As girls, we were taught to share and be gentle. To be kind and take care of the feelings of others. But as women, we need to learn to value our own boundaries and put ourselves first. It’s hard. Especially when we’ve been conditioned in the exact opposite way.

My heart goes out to all the women who have been disrespected, assaulted, and manipulated. I’m hoping this post reaches the next generation of girls and women who can learn how to set boundaries with men quickly from our experiences and grow from them. This post is meant to inspire and offer examples of healthy boundaries in relationships.

If there’s anything you take away from this post it should be to never be afraid to say, “NO.” That “NO” holds weight, always.

If you like “How To Set Boundaries With Men & Examples Of Healthy Boundaries In Relationships” check out:

How To Build Your Self Esteem & Self Confidence

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examples of healthy boundaries in relationships

How To Build Your Self Esteem & Self Confidence

build self confidence and self esteem
build self confidence and self esteem

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Self esteem. Most people don’t know how to build their self esteem and self confidence. And it’s tough, self esteem is kind of an abstract concept. Most people feel like they know what it is but they really don’t. It’s one of those ideals people constantly chase like- purpose, meaning, life, and goodness. Self esteem is probably the most valuable thing you can have and yet so many people don’t posses it.

So what is self esteem? And how do you build your self esteem?

Self esteem, by my definition, is a sense of confidence and belief in oneself that you are a person of value; a person worthy of respect and dignity. That you are a capable and independent person no matter what.

Let’s break down the concept further. What is esteem? What does it mean to hold someone in high esteem? Well, you’ll probably really respect that person, you won’t doubt them in moments when they give you advice and you might even want to be a bit like them. Self esteem is exactly that, but towards yourself.

A lot of people throw around that phrase but don’t really have it in themselves. Often times it’s confused with ego. But self esteem is different than ego. Ego is a version of ourselves that we imagine. Our sense of self. You can have an ego and no self esteem. You can also have self esteem and no ego. You can have both. But they are separate. Like I said, ego is the version of ourselves we imagine and self esteem is the complete respect and belief in oneself.

So what do you need to do in order to build a high self esteem? It’s not as easy as you think:

1) Avoid toxic people
This seems like a given but somehow toxic people tend to slither into our lives. They love to leech off the good energy of people with high self esteem and confidence. Usually in the form of a romantic interest. When you have high self esteem you tend to repel toxic partners (because you know better than to engage them) but when it’s low, the toxics will come in droves. It makes sense to avoid someone who devalues you, doesn’t respect you, pokes at your insecurities and overall is incompatible. Yet so many men and women end up with partners that thrive on keeping their lovers down and out.

By ending relationships that hurt how you see yourself, you are taking the next step to confidence and happiness. Because it’s impossible to be happy when someone you love is hurting you. It just doesn’t work if you want to build your self confidence.

2) Avoid situations that are emotionally harmful

This sort of ties in to topic # 1, if you’re avoiding toxic people you’re essentially avoiding situations that are harmful. But that’s not enough, there are tons of different situations you’ll need to avoid in order to maintain your sense of who you are and your value.

Somehow we’re also drawn to situations that seem either too good to be true or just give us too much hope. Disappointment is a huge reason why people lose their self-esteem. It could be something as easy as wanting a guy/girl to like you and finding out he wants your friend or standing next to your supermodel sister and feeling like the most monstrous person in the world when you’re actually really cute or dating a known player but still hoping you can change him. Or studying with the smartest kid in class, only to be left feeling dumb because you take too long to do the work. These sort of small not so serious situations will peck at your self-esteem and keep you from feeling as confident as you should be.

There’s also the issue with drama. I wish people were logical but we aren’t. We’re drawn to drama because it gives us a thrill or some sort of validation. It’s so important to avoid all drama and disappointment as much as possible and not put yourself in these emotionally charged situations because at the end of it all, the conflict will cause negativity towards yourself.

Think about the last big argument you got into…it wasn’t long until you started doubting yourself and wondering why you’re going through such a hard time. You started to question who you are and your value. The truth is, you can’t always avoid drama but, at the very least, you don’t have to seek it out.

3) Remember your strength

Sometimes when I’m feeling like life is impossible and too hard, I look back at what I’ve accomplished. I think of all the really hard shit I’ve gone through like my battle with achalasia or my unplanned pregnancy or the mold that infested our house. You see, I went through all that and it was stressful but I got through it.

Chances are there are challenges you’ve had to go through too. Remembering those obstacles in your life and drawing on that strength you had to get through them is a huge tool.

Looking at your past moments of perseverance and applying that to your future is one way to build your self esteem. Why shouldn’t you believe in yourself now when you’ve proven yourself capable time and time again? This is an easy way to build your confidence. It’s not really a fake it until you make it sort of self-esteem but more about giving yourself the credit you deserve.

4) Be your own cheerleader
It’s not always going to work out that someone will be rooting you on. In reality, there might be people in your life who are actively trying to tear you down.

Life is rarely perfect in that way and in these times you’ll need to know how to be your own cheerleader and believe in yourself when no one else does.

There was a girl in my high school that was always so negative. She had no knowledge on how to build self confidence. Every conversation I had with her was dreary and self-deprecating. She always complained about how nobody liked her, she was ugly, the teacher didn’t help her, her parents suck, etc. I tried to cheer her up and get her to think about the positives in her life but it never worked. After a while it was too draining and I had to distance myself. It just seemed like she enjoyed her own misery.

The point is to not expect others to lift you up but to do it on your own, even if you have to fake your own happiness for a little while. Self esteem isn’t something that can be built overnight but is something that’s built over time as you start to see yourself as worthy.

That friend, she had terrible self esteem and even though I was a friend who always was positive, it never helped. She needed to see all the positives in herself, for herself.

5) Accept who you are
Don’t be an apple wishing it was a pear, and don’t be a pear wishing it was an apple.

We all have things we wish we could change about ourselves but some of those things are unchangeable.

When I was younger, I used to wish I had lighter skin. Can you really change the color of your skin? Not unless you’re Michael Jackson.

My skin is the color of light milk chocolate and it’s a very nice complexion, but I lived in a neighborhood that was white and Italian so I wanted a fair complexion instead. Over time I learned to really love my skin, it hardly wrinkles and never gets sunburn. Imagine if I dwelled over my darker skin color, how unhappy I would have been?

For things you can’t change, you need to learn to live with it and love it. Your quirks, your imperfections, all of it. Accepting these things about yourself and even loving them will give you the mental room to feel positive about who you are and what you’re all about.

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I think the main point here is that most people aren’t born with a ton of self esteem. I would describe it more like a muscle you need to flex to strengthen.

What benefits are there to build self confidence? Tons, actually! You can finally do all those things you wanted to do in your life but were uncertain you could accomplish. You can ask that cute guy/girl out and not feel like their approval means everything and you can start living on your own terms and no longer feel chained to your insecurities. A person with high self esteem has the ultimate freedom.

So take it one step at a time, little by little your self esteem with find you.

If you like “How To Build Your Self Esteem & Self Confidence” Check Out My Other Posts!

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How To Stop Being Petty & Learn To Be Happier

How To Stop Being Petty & Learn To Be Happier
How To Stop Being Petty & Learn To Be Happier

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I’ve been guilty of it, subtly putting someone down, nitpicking flaws, needing to have the last word as a futile effort to be “right.” It’s true, I have moments where I’m the asshole and most of the time I don’t mean to be…it just sort of happens. But I’m working on it. I really want to learn how to stop being so petty and learn to be happier.

According to Urban Dictionary (my main source of definitions for modern day lingo), petty means:

1)making things, events, or actions normal people dismiss as trivial or insignificant into excuses to be upset, uncooperative, childish, or stubborn.
2)A person who habitually overreacts.
3)A person who is purposefully childish with the intent of illiciting a reaction.
4)An immature over reaction in retaliation of an undesired outcome.

You get the picture, basically an asshole. Most of the time, I don’t mean to be this way, it’s usually a response to other people’s asshole behavior.

I think most of us are petty in our own ways. At work I often find myself absorbing other people’s negativity and then giving it back in petty, unwarranted comments. Life is so stressful, sometimes my capacity for stress bubbles over in pettiness. I need to really learn how to be happier and not so petty.

Here are some of the ways that pettiness can show itself:

1) Needing to get the last word

Have you ever spoken to someone or gotten into an argument and the other person always had a biting comment back? You might correct them or clarify politely and you’re met with a derisive unnecessary comment that really didn’t do much but get under your skin. With people who are petty in this way, you can almost always guarantee that there’s a biting comment around the corner, usually it’s something to put you down or or point fingers at you for some wrong doing. It looks like this:

“Marsha, can you please wash the dishes tonight. I feel so tired.”
“Of course I’ll do the dishes Jenna, it’s not like I have anything better to do than to clean up after you.”

Of course Marsha, is being a petty b*tch about washing dishes. She could have either said “yes” or “no, sorry I can’t,” but she had to give this underhanded comment that was totally unnecessary.

3) Nitpicking

Nitpicking is an obvious one, and kind of piggybacks on needing to get the last word. It’s a way of picking at someone’s flaws until they have nothing left but bareboned insecurity. People who have experienced nitpicking tend to feel very insecure around the person being petty, it often feels like they’re walking on eggshells.

I used to have a friend, honestly she was more of a frenemy, she would always make fun of little things “jokingly.” It was pervasive from what I wore, to how I ate, to what I said. She always said it in front of other people so they could get in on the “joke.” Little things like, “why are you wearing that, it’s too hot, you never know how to dress for the weather,” or “you eat too slow, everyone always has to wait on you,” or “look how forgetful Alex is”, she always needs to be reminded of when the test is.” After a while those kind of comments tend to strip you bare and leave you feeling like you’re nothing. It’s so much harder to learn to be happier, when someone is reminding you of all the ways you suck.

3) Superiority complex
I’ve seen this happen at work more so than anywhere else. Especially with bosses or more seasoned colleagues. Somehow the status of being more seasoned or a manager makes people petty as f*ck. These people are always reminding you that you are beneath them. Whether that’s objectively true or not, it doesn’t matter.

People who suffer from this type of pettiness rely on belittling you so that they always feel in control. They NEED you to feel like you’re beneath them so they can feel superior.

5. Stubbornness
I’ve been very guilty of this one. I can be intensely stubborn. ESPECIALLY when I feel like I want to have something my way. If I’m not getting my way, then I’ll go out of my way to be stubborn over the smallest thing just to give the other person some hell. Sure, I could compromise and meet in the middle, but then I’d have no leverage for what I really want. By being extra stubborn, in some ways, it gives me some wiggle room to negotiate something else. A “tit for tat” kind of deal.

This is actually a VERY immature way of negotiating and handling disagreements but who said I was mature? Being overly stubborn is a way that some petty people (me) passively can get what they want or get their revenge.

Here are the ways you can stop being petty:

1) Be the bigger person

Pride is a hard thing to swallow and at the root of all pettiness is a sense of pride. Pettiness finds a way to “one up” someone. By being a person that is above all that, it just proves you’re an emotionally mature person that doesn’t stoop to other people’s pettiness.

Trust me, I know how satisfying pettiness can be, especially when someone is being rude to you first. At the end of the day, holding your head up high and not lowering yourself to other petty peoples’ level will give you a sense of self confidence, assurance and petty-free pride.

2) Meditate

Sometimes you just need to take a step back from the situation. Meditation, prayer or whatever you want to call it on a daily basis will help calm your nerves and give you perspective on what’s important in life- and it’s definitely not pettiness. Life is about how to learn to be happier with yourself.

Next time someone gets under your skin, you’ll be able to have the calm clarity that it’s just not worth it and let their annoying-ness roll right off.

Even if you’re in the heat of the moment and someone is being totally obnoxious, it doesn’t hurt to take a few moments to breathe before giving a petty comeback. In those few seconds, you might be able to come to the conclusion that your petty comeback doesn’t do sh*t to resolve to conflict and actually adds fuel to the fire.

So take a moment, not everyone deserves your reaction, so stop being so petty.

3) Talk out your issues

Other times people might just get on your nerves and not even KNOW it, and if you don’t speak up but just jump to pettiness, you’re going to give the wrong impression. This is the way many communication issues arise. Someone says something rude and annoying, they’re unknowingly doing it and you just get triggered.

The key here is to talk it out. Mention that the behavior that triggers you is not ok and why you feel that way. Really make an effort to explain yourself. Some people will understand and stop triggering you and stop unknowingly annoying you. Others will scoff and say, “Oh, stop being so sensitive. It was only a joke.”

To those scoffing assholes, bring on the pettiness. It’s ok, as long as you gave them the warning not to trigger you. *wink*

4)Avoid your triggers

And if all else fails and you can’t get those annoying rude people to leave you alone despite telling them, you should probably just avoid them. That’s probably the easiest way on how to stop being petty and learn to be happier. Most of the time pettiness brings negativity into your life so half the time it’s not worth the effort.

Avoid the assholes and the people who are rude and crass. Avoid people who don’t respect boundaries and are just trying to get a rise out of you.

I’m a true believer in karma and bringing positive people into your life through positivity. So avoiding and cutting out people who don’t treat you the way you deserve and only bring out your ugly side sounds like a plan.

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If you like “How To Stop Being Petty & Learn To Be Happier” Check out these other posts:

How To Be Successful & Be Happy

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The Power Of Positivity: Live The Good Life

How To Get Ahead At Work Without Brown Nosing

Brown-nosing. My personal definition is that brown-nosing is when someone sticks their nose up someone’s figurative ass. They get right up cozy into the crack and take a good big wiff of whatever’s up there just so they can get close to the decision maker in their company and benefit from it. Flattery, compliments, baby-talk, gifts and other inappropriate behavior is how the brownnoser get’s their nose as far up that crack as they can go.

I personally find brown-nosing to be the most disgusting, underhanded, and pathetic thing to do at work. And yet so many people are just so willing to throw their self respect in the garbage and brown-nose their way into a big paycheck.

Why?

Because it works. Bosses have egos and for some reason they like when people brown-nose. It makes them feel important in their position. After all, why would someone take a job with more responsibility and stress if they weren’t getting some status and money in return?

But despite how effective and despicable brown-nosing is, there are some of us that hold onto our dignity and just can’t get ourselves to stick our noses up our boss’s ass to get ahead.

Thankfully, you don’t have to sell your soul to get promoted.

Here Are My Top Ways Of Getting Noticed At Work Without Having To Kiss Up To Your Boss.

Be Reliable, Be On Time

This works wonders. Just being on time and being reliable can say a lot about your character. People who are consistently late are generally perceived as lazy, unreliable, selfish and irresponsible. Even if you’re late once, you can leave a bad taste in someone’s mouth depending on how important it was that you be on time. Some people say that they can’t control traffic, their kids ability to get out of the house on time or that there was a random emergency that came up. 99% of those excuses are bullsh*t. Planning ahead can easily help you with your tardiness issue. You need to anticipate where you need to be and all the obstacles that can get in your way and aim to be early. By being timely, you’re saying to the world that I respect your time, I’m reliable and I’ll do what I say I will do.

And what kind of boss wouldn’t want an employee like that. When it comes down to it, if you’ve proven that you’re reliable, your boss will see that and give you more opportunities over the unreliable employees.

Speak Your Mind, Share Your Ideas

I used to be so afraid to share my ideas at work. Mainly because my ideas would question the status quo or a direction the company was taking. I was afraid of rocking the boat. I don’t mean “question” like in an adversarial way, but I tend to offer a different alternative. I think that speaking your mind and offering your perspective can be incredibly empowering and help you stand out.

And occasionally I’m able to offer a view that’s highly valued. There have been times when I pointed out a flaw in a program that we started using or a scheduling conflict or paperwork that needed to be completed. Catching these problems early and being able to point them out efficiently has help me seem like I know what I’m doing at my job, that I’m not sloppy, and that I care about the quality of my work.

Be A Team Player

I’ve actually been guilty of not being a team player 100% of the time but this is definitely something you want to do if you want to get noticed. Being a team player means sometimes letting the other person get work that you wanted to do, stepping outside of your role and training others and taking the advice of others around you.

Being a team player is actually really hard because, often, your company is asking you to take part in something that you don’t necessarily agree with, whether it’s the direction of the company with a new hire, or merging departments.

But being able to step up to the plate during those difficult times and have a positive attitude can absolutely make you stand out to upper management.

Ask For More Responsibility

Asking for more responsibility is not necessarily brown-nosing. It really depends on how you approach it. Are you saying that you want to do more work than other people and that you’re better at your job than other people? That would be brown-nosing. But if you really have some extra room on your plate to do some work then go ahead and ask for it. The worst thing to do is to skate by with as little work as possible while everyone else is drowning

A good boss will definitely appreciate initiative and may even take this as a sign that you’re ready for the next step, like a change in role, a promotion or a shift in responsibilities.

So asking for additional responsibility it’s definitely not brown-nosing as long as you do it in a tactful way, without throwing others under the bus and are honest about your intentions for why you want to take on the extra work.

At the end of the day, let your work speak for itself. You don’t need to kiss up to someone, give unnecessary gifts, flatter or any of that stuff to get ahead. People who do that are just really insecure about what they have to offer and then want to play the “like me card.”

And as a caveat, if you’re not getting ahead after putting in good work, loyalty and years on the job then it’s probably a good time to consider other options and opportunities. Not all employers will see good employees and reward them but that’s on them and usually results in a higher turnover.

So just be yourself. Work hard and be friendly. Brown nosing it is never the way to go if you want to keep your dignity.

Check Out My Other Career Posts

What To Do When You Dislike Your Job

How To Interview Well: Tips & Tricks For The Perfect Interview

Dealing with Toxic Work Culture

How to Job Hop Successfully

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Why Integrity Matters

As I get older, The idea of living a life of integrity is starting to fade. I miss being “green” and wanting to do the right thing all the time.

But I know that that’s not how the world works. Why is that? Because of greed, selfishness and ego. This is what drives our world.

Integrity, according to Webster Dictionary, means a firm adherence to an exceptional code of moral or artistic values.

As a child I was always concerned about doing the right thing, making sure everyone got their fair share. But even then, I noticed the lack of fairness and integrity in my fellow students, teachers and other adults. I saw the most talented athletes get chosen first for sports teams at gym and given the most floor time. Students that wanted to participate were left to the sidelines. And I’m not even talking about organized school sports. Teachers spent the most time with students who were already very smart, had tutoring and helicopter parents to support their performance. So children who had less were expected to produce more to keep up.

I always thought adulthood would be a lot easier when dealing with moral problems. I thought people are honest. Naively, I wondered why would adults lie? I had thought that my fellow students were opportunistic liars and cheaters because they were immature. But the reality is that these children would grow up to be adults who continued to lack important characteristics like honesty, integrity and virtue. The saying “you can’t teach an old dog new tricks” has a ring of truth.

The childhood version of me imagined that I would grow into an adult that was confident, sure, honest and willing to fight for what’s right but now I’m not sure I’ll ever be those things. Some days I can feel myself shrinking, barraged by the screams of people playing politics and those fighting for themselves.

From the time I was 20-25 years old, I was very optimistic. Truly believing that the world would sort itself out and that what’s right will prevail, but that’s not necessarily the truth. It feels like the older I get, the more “woke” I am about how things work.

I’ve been burned a few times. I’ve written a few posts on that.

The Horror of Dealing With Mold In My Apartment

Dealing with Toxic Work Culture

From friends to work to even my landlord now. They’ve all burned me. When it comes to benefits, money and status, a sense of doing what’s right goes out the window.

I came to realize that there are people who will only interact with you when it benefits them financially, politically or socially. It was a hard pill to swallow, to realize that there were a lot of people who were disingenuous.

But I grew up.

And sometimes when I’m looking at a situation, I now think how can I profit from this, how can I benefit? I hate to admit it but I’m becoming one of those people who are selfish, egoistic and greedy. It’s almost like I can’t help it. Intrusive thoughts enter my mind like, if you don’t take advantage, someone else will or you have to take your share of the pie.

I’m ashamed because deep down I know these thoughts are wrong. I’ve grown to distrust other people to the point that I’m becoming untrustworthy and I hate that.

Am I growing up and becoming less naive? Or am I becoming jaded and callous?

If the young and optimistic version of me met 30 year old me today what would she say? She’d say I’m becoming everything she hates about this world and that I’ve given up. But fighting to keep my integrity and resolve to be an upright, unselfish human being sometimes feels like swimming against an impossible current.

I can count on my one hand the amount of people outside of my family who I respect for their character. Everyone else would easily resort to dishonesty if they knew they could benefit from it.

Maybe that’s why I have no friends… I just can’t accept a friendship that’s false.

So what to do?

I still think that being a good person is important. I want to hold on to that childish hope that as a human being we can care for the good of others without gaining anything for ourselves. Without even a few good people in our society, we’d be living in a literal hell where society is built on bullshit, lies, deception and selfishness.

The truth is I’ve met people with integrity and I hope others can look at me and see that I aim to be a person of good character as well.

So hopefully the child I knew isn’t as disappointed as I feel in myself sometimes. As I aim to be a person who’s better at standing up for what’s good and right for its own sake, I need to learn to not have such high expectations of other people.

Integrity and character matters because at the end of the day that’s all we have.

Check out my other posts

On Gratitude…

The Power of Positivity

The Power Of Change