Have you had conflicts with friends or family members due to your likes or dislikes?
When something we like becomes an obsession, it is called craving. Likewise, when something we dislike causes stress it is called an aversion.
Likes and dislikes are so embedded within that we may not even pick up that they have turned to an extreme which is craving or aversion.
Here are some tips for knowing if you have a craving or aversion
- Unable to stop thinking about the thing or situation you like or dislike
- Urge to constantly explain your point of view
- Intense emotions of anger, frustration when it comes to letting go or toning down
If you observe that any likes or dislikes you have cause you to experience any of the above, it may be time to set the balance right.
Things can be set right by learning to draw boundaries. Setting a boundary allows us to value relationships more than our own likes and dislikes. It is a temporary phase to heal, reset, and reconnect.
The reality is by not setting boundaries, we overcompensate for the stretch.
By consciously drawing boundaries, we can work on ourselves to expand, deal with the situation differently, i.e, allow ourselves a step towards boundlessness
Boundlessness is the ability to expand or alter one’s own personal limits in a way that is conducive, at the time when we are ready. Through this, we can be more of ourselves with everyone around us.
Here is a 4 step process that I have found to be very useful and effective. In my work as a coach, I have also found that my clients arrive at something similar after they reflect and realise that they want to change.
To make it easy to remember, let’s use the word DRAW as the mnemonic
Step-1 : D – Develop interest to reflect on your day
Just the intent to want to self-reflect is a way forward. Take few mins at the end of the day to ask yourself some questions
Did I have any moments of losing my cool or being frustrated today? Were there moments related to a like or dislike of mine? Is it a pattern related to the same context?
Step-2: R – Re-evaluate to validate
Without jumping to conclusions, re-evaluate the scenario. With the armour of self-awareness, step into the scenario being aware of how you feel and react when it comes to your likes and dislikes in the presence of others who influence you. Some self-coaching questions could be
How would it be if I were to tone down my likes? How would it be if I were to let go my dilike? What are some thoughts that come to me when I consider this?
Step-3: A – Adjust behaviour
Here is the crux. Altering behaviour is not easy. It requires conscious steps and consistent effort. If you find that you are swinging to craving or aversion, are you willing to draw a boundary? Some self-coaching questions could be
When I think of making a choice diffrerent from the usual, how do I feel? What is a small step I am willing to take towards this outcome? What benefit can the change bring me and to others?
Step-4: W – Widen
Appreciate yourself for making changes. Observe how that is working and slowly continue to take steps towards what feels right and rewarding. Some self-coaching questions could be
What was the first order consequence of my action on my emotions and those close to me? How do I continue to balance and make this conducive for all those involved?
With these steps, you will find that you can take steps towards expanding your own personal limits for your likes and dislikes in a way that is most conducive for you.
Boundlessness is a beautiful state which allows us to explore more about ourselves.
Drawing temporary boundaries allow us to keep what matters most, i.e., relationships, while we grow and flourish