Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Pressing the "I Don't Want to Know" Button

Each of us has a combination of friends, acquaintances, and some un-categorizable people in our lives. We want to share experiences with these people and get to know them each in a unique way. There can be times, however, when you identify parts of people or their lives that you don't want to know about. Is this okay? Ask your body and your mind, and they'll say it's more than okay. Boundaries are important and we can each learn to listen to our health and press the "I Don't Want to Know" button when other people's stress is starting to become our own. And you can do this without sacrificing a friendship or other type of relationship.

First off, learn to recognize the signs of outside stress entering your life from another person's life. Are you constantly thinking about something this person said or did to you, even while trying to fall asleep? Do you feel like he or she is pushing you to see them in a certain way that is challenging for you based on your eyesight? Do you feel like a friend is pulling, pushing, or wrestling you into his or her personal drama? Do you find yourself wondering why, why, oh why is this person acting this way?

Uh oh--It might be time to push the "I don't want to know" button. Realistically, you could spend every waking second for weeks trying to figure this person out and why they do what they do--especially where you're concerned. The problem is, there isn't always an answer. And while you're pouring your brain cells over it, other people's stress can become your own and raise your cortisol levels, create adrenal fatigue, upset your stomach, and disturb your sleep without your conscious choosing.

Ultimately, relationships aren't 100% drama free throughout life. You may not even want it that way because a healthy sprinkling of drama naturally occurs from people being different from each other and from you. Why else would we be hooked on gritty T.V. show dramas? But you still have the right to press your own "release" button before allowing someone else to cross the line in pushing your buttons and triggering excessive annoyance, irritation, and anger. The "I don't want to know" button reminds you that not everything in other people's business has to become your business if you don't want it to.

Healthy relationships help create a healthier you too. So learn where your boundaries are, realize what you'd like to know versus what you'd rather not know, and keep your "I don't want to know button" handy in case of an emergency. Your body, adrenal glands (the organs that help you through stress), blood pressure, and mental-emotional health will thank you for it. Maybe your friend will too in the long run, you never know.

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