The more women I speak with and the more comments I read, is the more I discover that many of our fears and our reactions to them are based on assumptions and a total lack of reasonable questioning. On the surface though, many women assume that they are communicating but in actual fact they suffer with Women Who Talk Too Much Syndrome, talking for the sake of talking but never actually deriving any action from it.
Assuming is for people that don’t want to risk knowing the truth and possibly having to adjust their own behaviour or even discover that they are wide of the mark.
Assuming also allows you to stay emotionally invested because as long as you never get real about things, you can still believe that somehow everything will pan out.
Making assumptions about things puts you in the comfort zone of believing that nothing is going to change but if it does, you’ll be around to benefit from it, only of course, it never quite works out like that!
I was talking with someone the other day who told me that they didn’t go out because they were wary of their Mr Unavailable not being around when they got back. On further digging it transpired that she had never actually found out if this was the case because she had just assumed it was. Now it didn’t take away from the fact that he was a Mr Unavailable but the basis of her fear for not creating her own life and being social may have actually been invalid and it is the type of fear that exacerbates the common feeling that many readers have of not feeling like they are an entity. It meant that as well as coping with breaking up with him, she also had to cope with unnecessary isolation of her own creation.
Sometimes the assumptions that we make about people, whilst being based upon some of our history of dealing with people, are often based upon fears that go unchallenged and unchecked. This means that some of the time you may be right but some of the time, you may be attaching your assumptions to the wrong people. It’s a bit of a tarring everyone with the same brush and not judging a person based on that particular relationship and that particular individuals behavior.
If you make assumptions you will consciously and subconsciously adjust relationship behaviour to accommodate your assumptions which in turn ends up making your assumptions appear to be ‘real’ – yep, that self-fulfilling prophecy territory again!
So if you take my old assumptions and fears:
If he is pursuing me after just getting out of a ten year relationship he must be seriously interested in me and over his ex.
Total assumption. If I had asked him where he stood about starting a new relationship with someone else so soon, I could have found that out and save myself five months of fannying around. I, however, was afraid of coming across as needy or demanding – the fear powering the assumption. Note though, that he also assumed that because I knew that he was just out of a relationship that I must know that he couldn’t be ready for another one…
If he is coming back to me after I cut off contact, he must be ready to give me what I want.
I assumed that because I had finished it with him for not being ready for a relationship that he must be ready if he was calling me up again. I was also afraid of scaring away a good opportunity and ending up being alone. If I had even thought about it rationally I would have realised that he was coming back because he was testing the waters for an ego stroke and a shag.
If he keeps being with me despite the fact that he has a girlfriend, he must find me hard to resist and be crazy about me.
Total assumption! The opportunity for a free ride was hard to resist would be a lot closer to the truth! He was coming back because he knew that I was wasn’t treating myself with love and respect! But I pursued the assumption which in turn bought lots of unneccesarry drama to the table. I was afraid to face the truth about him and admit that I had made a mistake and that yet again, I had found myself in a dubious relationship – fear behind the assumption.
If I don’t let him back into my life and restart our relationship, I could be ruining all chances of being with him as this could be that time that he is ready to leave his girlfriend and I might scare him away.
Assuming and scared of him being ‘The One That Got Away’. I was scared that this could be that ONE time when he was ready to ditch her and could be sh*tting on it from a height! There never was that ONE time and the reality was that he was coming back because he knew I was weak – he had nothing more to offer me other than pathetic, empty promises.
HOMEWORK: Take the negative things that you believe about your guy and your relationship and list them out on a piece of paper. If you feel like you may not have enough paper to cover your thoughts… start with the 3,5, or 10 most important as a basis.
I want you to list them with plenty of space in between each so that you can jot notes and I want you to challenge them.
If you are in any doubt email them to me at nml [@] baggagereclaim.co.uk and I’ll challenge them! Or list them in the comments and between us all we’ll challenge them!
Here are some tips for helping you challenge them:
1) Is the belief that you have listed, in any way, shape, or form, based on an assumption? Note any aspects of it that are assumptions.
2) When you first started to believe this ‘thing’ about you or the relationship, was it based on something that had happened or was it just based on your own internal thought pattern?
3) Have you ever challenged this particular belief? For instance:
If you have been afraid that unless you are at home waiting for him to call each day that you may not hear from him, have you challenged this belief by actually going out? If so, what happened?
4) What are you REALLY afraid of? Behind every assumption and behind every excuse, is a lot of fear. What is it?
Do you have a post or tip to submit for the series? Get in touch!
Catch up on posts in the 30 Days of Drama Reduction series.
If you are a Drama Seeker, you should be reading my ebook Mr Unavailable and the Fallback Girl. Find out more and buy and download.