Addressing Gaslighting that Takes Place in Church

Uncategorized Aug 03, 2020

A new group for divorced singles was opening up at Megan’s church, so she decided to join. On the first night there, she shared a story about the issues with her husband. 

“He was an addict, and I made excuses for his behavior all the time. I didn’t want to believe things were that bad, so I tried to overlook it for awhile.” 

Another member of the group interrupted her. “Well, did you pray for him?”

“Of course. With friends, too.”

“Have you forgiven him?”

“I’m working on that,” Megan said. “That’s why I’m here.” 

At the end of the group, Megan was hesitant about going back. She knew that she needed to forgive her husband for the hurt he brought in her life, but she was still working on processing the trauma that happened within their relationship. 

Sometimes when we’re sharing our pains with another person, they think they’re being helpful when they...

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A Lesson From My Daughter

Uncategorized Jul 31, 2020

It was a holiday weekend, and I was at a celebration that included a memorial “paddle out” on surfboards in the Pacific Ocean to honor and remember my brother-in-law, Mark. He was a Navy SEAL, a great American, husband, father, hero, brother, and a friend. Mark died on a mission in Iraq in 2008.

My daughter, Olivia, was 10 at the time, and she wanted to participate in the paddle-out to honor her uncle. So, we borrowed a surfboard and began to walk out to the beach where the surfers were gathering, with me carrying the board. I was excited for her to take part in honoring her uncle Mark and was inspired by her fearlessness in wanting to paddle way out into the ocean with all the adults. She did just great and when we came back to the beach we hugged.

She was very proud and thankful for her uncle Mark, and we spent a moment talking about all of it before everyone gathered their things to make the long walk back up the hillside to the main event. Everyone, that is, except...

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You're Not Responsible for an Addict's Behavior

Uncategorized Jul 30, 2020
 

You develop codependent habits because you care, and you don’t want to hurt anyone. You want to see an addict get better or feel good, but When we see our loved ones suffering, it’s easy to want to come to their rescue. But the reality is, you can’t just take on their feelings, get sober for them or solve all their problems. We are to be responsible to someone by providing them resources to get help, but we are not responsible for someone in the sense that it’s not our place to do the work for someone else.

This clip comes from Episode 66 of The Dr. Cloud Show. 

Also, I talk more about boundaries with addicts right here. 

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How to Negotiate and Get What You Want

Uncategorized Jul 30, 2020
 

In life, you don't get what you want. You get what you negotiate. The things we want are very doable. They're attainable. But there's an obstacle in the way because it requires an agreement from someone on the other side that has some power to block it or say no. And we have to be able to get to a yes at some point.

In a negotiation, you're looking to come to a solution that you can live in agreement with someone else, but many times, people come to a standstill on what they'll agree on. There are a few things that are important as you find yourself trying to get to an agreement that works.

This clip comes from Episode 66 of The Dr. Cloud Show. 

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How Healthy is Your Most Important Relationship? Find Out.

Uncategorized Jul 29, 2020
 

 

What’s your relationship with the word no? Do you get along well? Are you friends, or are you strangers?

 

If I’ve got a conflict with the word no, then I am going to have some problems in life. The word no is one of the most important tools that you have in your toolbox if you want to have a good life.

I hope this clip from today’s episode of The Dr. Cloud Show brings you insight and encouragement.

If you’d like to feel more confident in your relationship with the word no, I can help you work on that right here.  

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How to Show Yourself Grace

Uncategorized Jul 28, 2020

Have you ever had one of those moments where everything just seemed perfect? It never seems to last, does it?

What are those perfect moments? How do we create more of them?

We all have a perfect nature, and in a perfect world, every one of us would succeed beyond our wildest dreams. However, we do not live in a perfect world, so we have to manage the imperfection that makes up our day-to-day reality. We have to pursue virtue and ideal outcomes despite living in a world that sometimes seems to reward people who act in bad faith.

We need to develop the character to face reality, to handle whatever challenges are put in front of us, and to overcome them. Part of developing that character is admitting your imperfections to yourself. There may be a lot of qualities that you really don't like in others, that you might give yourself a pass on because you haven't examined your own life the way you scrutinize others. We must do this because otherwise we will be continually disappointed, and...

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A List of Toxic People to Set Boundaries With

Uncategorized Jul 27, 2020

As you go through this list, I want you to know that it isn’t exhaustive, but in each one of these relationships, we see common problems with boundaries and those who violate them. Keep this list handy, as it can serve as a resource for you to refer back to when you need a reminder. 

And if you know someone who may benefit from this, feel free to share it!

Common Boundary Violators: 

Your Parents, In-laws and Family of Origin

An Immature Spouse

The Toxic Gaslighter

The Guilt Tripper

The Passive-Aggressive Manipulator

The Narcissist

The Drama Instigator

The Disrespectful Boyfriend/Girlfriend

The Shame Projector

The Toxic Person at Church

The Addict


Also, you can see the full-length version of each one of these videos in the course library on Boundaries.Me. Also, we’ve made SO MANY NEW changes to the site to cater to your personal journey. If you’re not part of the community yet, or you want to give it another try, you’ve got...

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It's Brave to Be Vulnerable

Uncategorized Jul 23, 2020

It felt like I was at Wimbledon watching a tennis match, but instead of a tennis ball that was flying back and forth, it was blame. In tennis, players hit the ball back and forth over the net. In this counseling session with Jeremy and Rachel, one would blame the other, and before the shot ever landed, the other would hit it right back. I felt my head going back and forth, left to right, as they pointed the finger at each other.

This particular “match” was about “his irresponsibility,” as Rachel termed it.

“What do you mean?” I asked.

“He always lets me down. Every time I depend on him, he doesn’t follow through, and I am left with some situation that is awful and have to clean up the mess. He keeps doing it over and over,” she said.

The “situation” that she was referring to this time was kind of a big one. He had forgotten to pay the light bill and the lights had literally “gone out.” And she was not...

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How to Process Feelings of Anger

Uncategorized Jul 23, 2020

Aspects of the self can be paired with guilt messages, and certainly, anger is one of those. Some people feel guilty whenever they feel themselves getting angry. But there is another problem with anger.

Anger is a state of protest and fight. We are wired with this emotion inside of ourselves to be “against” something. We use anger to fight injustice, unrighteousness, evil, and other bad things. Anger is a problem-solving emotion designed to protect what is good and what is valuable.

But sometimes people have not expressed anger toward bad things that have happened to them because they have happened in a context in which expressing anger would have been dangerous. So these people deny their anger.

The problem is that anger is directional. It has to be aimed at something. It is supposed to be aimed at injustice or the person who is being unfair. But if this is not possible - for example, in cases of child abuse - people will aim the anger at themselves instead. Abused...

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Intimacy is a Necessity, Not a Luxury

Uncategorized Jul 22, 2020

We were created to need a close and intimate relationship not with others. Relationships are the fuel of life. They provide us with acceptance, encouragement, empathy, wisdom, and a host of other relational nutrients. These nutrients keep us healthy and growing. In fact, many studies have shown that people without enough intimate relationships in life have more medical and psychological problems, as well as a higher mortality rate. The songwriters are correct: a lack of love can literally kill you. So however we look at the digital age, we need to make sure that we are getting our relational sustenance. The key is this: whenever you have the opportunity, set a limit on the digital and default to face-to-face.

Intimacy Requires Multiple Levels of Information Exchange

This sounds a bit dry or technical, but it’s true: to be deeply connected in satisfying, safe, and vulnerable relationships, we need to express who we are at many levels and experience others at those same levels....

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