Teaching people how they should treat you

I found this interesting stub of an idea on Racism 101, and I'd like to discuss it with all of you. They're posting it in the context of dealing with people who are racist towards you.

It's also related to how people deal with conflict. What's your attitude toward conflict? Do you relish it? Do you try to make everyone like you to avoid conflict at all costs?

And it's also related to our attitudes about how we should be connected to people. Like, is all connection good? For example, if you're a freelancer, should every client be held on to just because they're a client? Or in the area of personal frienships, should you stay connected to someone just because you've been friends a long time?


From Racism 101:
“We’re taught to turn the other cheek—that being kind in the face of hostility is the better way to respond to conflict so love can overcome hate. According to psychologist Clifford N. Lazarus, writing for Psychology Today, that sort of reaction just teaches abusive people that their behavior is effective. Here’s why.

It all comes down to something called the “Law of Effect”, which refers to the way people interpret and understand the behavior of others. For example, if someone treats you poorly and you treat them kindly, the effect produced by their bad behavior is your affection. By being nice to mean people, you’re essentially creating a reward system for bad behavior.

This doesn’t mean you should devolve into a complete asshole anytime you encounter one, but it is important to remember that there is such thing as being too nice. When someone does something that bothers you, it’s important to take that immediate opportunity to tell them. Being kind is often just an excuse to avoid necessary conflict. You don’t have to be a jerk, but you do have to confront the situation or risk encouraging the bad behavior you’re seeking to prevent.”



Christine Kane has four steps about how to teach yourself this that you can check out. I also found this point salient:
"The biggest risk involved in teaching people how to treat you is the risk that some of them might go away. Some friends might not call you anymore. Some clients might leave. In my situation, I might simply not get the performance date. You have to be willing to surrender those things that aren’t in alignment with how you want to be treated. They necessarily must go away. And the test is to let them.

One of the things that keeps you hanging on to them is a belief in lack. A belief that there’s not enough. There aren’t enough jobs, clients, gigs, men, women, whatever. And one of the best ways to find out that there are more than enough of these things is to be brave and selective, live by your values and standards, and watch what you do attract. You might be scared. But you won’t be disappointed."




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