Many bullies and narcissists take control of people and situations by creating drama and chaos. Everyone has problems in life; stuff breaks; health goes south; hopes, dreams and expectations get shattered. But that doesn’t require fear and panic, drama and chaos.
Gina had noticed a pattern. Both her mother and one adult daughter loved drama and chaos. Every time life seemed to be going along smoothly, something would happen and they’d get hysterical. Everything was an emergency; it was the end of the world. By the time everyone in the family, especially Gina, had gotten involved, Gina realized she’d spent every minute doing what they wanted. Nothing had been solved but she’d spent a lot of money and it was her fault that things were even worse. All her plans had been ruined; she could never relax and enjoy herself.
What seemed like a simple problem had become a whirlpool or black hole, and everyone had been sucked in to make her mother or that daughter happy.
But how could Gina not help? Gina realized she was being sucked into the hysteria and required to help the way they wanted, which meant using all her time and energy to throw gasoline on the fire.
During these near-continuous episodes, they’d become the center of attention. Everyone’s feelings, thoughts and energies were devoted to making them feel better. And afterward, Gina was exhausted.
But how could she say, “”No” and mean it. And not feel guilty about it.
Gina declared herself a drama/chaos-free zone.
She made that more palatable by saying her doctor required her to have no drama or chaos for six months. Of course, that didn’t stop her mother or that daughter. They’d never cared what Gina thought or wanted. They demanded she help them the way they wanted.
Gina used the scripts she’d prepared.
“That’s a real problem. Sorry, I can’t help this time. When you’ve solved it, we can get together for coffee. Doctor’s orders.” And she hung up.
She had to restrain herself from immediately calling back and suggesting solutions and then doing what they wanted. She had to restrain her fear and guilt that her mother would die of neglect. She didn’t. She had to live with her fear that something horrible would happen to that daughter or her daughter would be even nastier and keep the grandchildren from her. But her daughter needed her and wouldn’t kill the cow she thought might give milk later.
Gina had to resist their bullying and manipulation.
Her mother and her daughter attacked her. They called her names; they threatened her. Then they tried getting the rest of the family involved to force her into returning to her old behavior. Gina kept smiling and saying, “No,” sweetly. She never explained why she was so mean and selfish.
Gina had to resist her inner bully.
“You’re being cold and uncaring. Our main job is to be forgiving and available to help others. You won’t be loved by God. You’re guilty of a grave sin.” Gina also had scripts to argue with that voice. Then she focused her whole energy and attention on other activities she’d planned. After a while her guilt subsided.
Of course they kept trying but the doctor-required, drama/chaos-free zone kept getting extended.
After a long time, when Gina seemed to feel no guilt and was steady on her course, she noticed her mother and that daughter had found other people to fill their needs. She’d hoped they’d change their bullying and narcissism but the chose the easy path.
And Gina got the result she wanted: a drama/chaos-free life.
Of course, there are many complications depending on your situation. The best way to learn how to take power in your life and to be the person you want to be is to hire Dr. Ben for personalized coaching and counseling so you can:
Develop the strength, courage, will and determination to be and to act your best resolutely, diligently and effectively.
Develop a plan and master the skills necessary to create the life your spirit has always hungered for.
Since all tactics depend on the situation, call me at 1-877-8Bullies for expert counseling and coaching by phone or Skype.