WHO IS YOUR BACKSEAT DRIVER?
Are you letting stories that you repeat over and over again define who you are? Do you allow them to drive your life? If you don’t know what I mean read:
WHO IS CHAUFFEURING YOUR LIFE?
Maybe you have your stories under control but have another problem… other PEOPLE who want to (or you allow to) chauffeur your life. You know, that back seat driver that is always telling you where your life should go at every turn. As you read that did someone immediately come to mind? Did you see their face and hear their voice? If so, you know what I am talking about.
Humans need human contact to survive. People need people. We need time. We need touch. We need connection.
What we don’t need is to feel like we are powerless or controlled. We don’t need to feel like our emotions and happiness are totally dependent on pleasing someone else. We don’t need to feel like our actions are being controlled by the demands of another person.
I do have a caveat here -- I am not talking about a mutually loving relationship where there is reciprocity of respect, kindness and love. It is healthy when we give of our self and do acts of love and kindness for others and in return receive feelings of love and self-satisfaction.
I am talking about the sponges that soak up all of our good intentions and acts of kindness without returning any level of thoughtfulness. Oh, occasionally they may throw a sweet gesture your way, but for the most part, they hold an expectation that you will always be there, always support them and always give, give, give.
We believe the control is created by the other person, but the reality is – WE create the situation by giving away our control. We allow the back seat driver to steer our life and control our actions. Let me say that again- WE create the situation by giving away our control.
By doing this we give away our happiness. We cheapen our value by letting others push our buttons. We feel tied like a puppet with no way to cut the strings. And yet, we are the only ones who can.
It is even possible that the other person is not aware of this situation, but it has been going on for so long that it has become a habit that holds no consequences or responsibility on their side. After all, they are in the cushy seat, the comfortable place, the receiving end.
We must create boundaries.
Boundaries around what we will or won’t do.
Boundaries around our self-inflicted guilt when we believe we are responsible for the other person.
Boundaries around our hearts as a protection from the invisible force of expectation we feel from the other person.
And boundaries around our minds that have been trained to create the illusion of obligation to this person.
Isn’t it time to put the brakes on?
If you are always giving family members or friends money to get them back on their feet, but never see them grow up and take control of their own life --Stop writing checks expecting this to change.
If someone is always late, wait an appropriate 10-15 minutes and then leave- they obviously feel their time is more important than yours. Don’t cheapen your value.
If you are the one who tries to make everything perfect for others in hopes of making them happy, but it is never enough-- it probably never will be enough and they will probably never be happy…and while doing this neither will you.
If you are under obligation to continually take care of or give to a person, evaluate if the obligation is real or is it just your perception that you “owe” someone your time and talent. Evaluate the situation for codependency. Are you getting something from being a martyr? Even if you feel like you are being used and taken advantage of, have you become dependent on being needed?
If you are continually trying to stop giving your resources of time, finances, energy and control of your emotions and life to someone else, but only break free for short periods of time. Then you slip back into the old pattern again of one-way giving. Chart how long you have been doing this pattern. Where has it gotten you?
If you are following a life path because someone told you it was the road you should take, but you hate the scenery, you feel lost, or you know in your heart it isn’t the way you should be going, it is never too late to stop, make a U-turn and let your soul’s GPS recalculate to guide you on YOUR path. There isn’t time to be controlled by a backseat driver. Be your own navigator on this road of life.
Take control of your own steering wheel.
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Pennie’s Life Lesson:
“Take control of your own thoughts,
time and talent.
Don’t allow a back seat driver to
steer your life.”
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My intent in sharing this with you is to encourage you to think about who is controlling your emotions and actions. Shouldn't YOU be in control???
Share your thoughts and experiences relating to this post in a comment below . And please feel free to email me at:
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