Tag Archives: guilt

High Maintenance Girls and Autos

Not talking Cuban smokers here: Sometimes a boyfriend with unclear boundaries is just a stand-in mechanic. Zen and the Art of Girlfriend Mechanics Maintenance.  — BadWitch

Readers Are Spellbound & Perplexed…

Dear GWBW — My girl never does basic maintenance on her car, then when small things go wrong, she gets all up in my grill. She has a mechanic she likes and says she trusts, but I get stuck with all her raging when things go wrong and costs her big bucks. How do I deal with her? I’m not interested in becoming her mechanic OR losing my girlfriend. Auto Affixiation

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Dear Auto Affixiation,

I just heard an important grandpa to grandson line about it being necessary to experiment and fail in order to grow up — but even he wouldn’t tolerate the same childish behavior twice. This is exactly my take on your question: you have a woman who “won’t do basic maintenance” then blames her boyfriend “when things don’t go right” and she has to pay money she could have likely avoided shelling out if she’d taken better care of herself. Hmm. I think there are some other issues going on here that have nothing to do with trains, planes or any other mode of transportation.

Seems like some irresponsible people have to learn by needlessly spending dollars they usually don’t have, and others need to stop trying to save them (money or heroically). Let her drive her car, whether on the road smoothly or into the ground — and you focus on fine tuning your relationship in the real ways you express interest in: with love, RMPs and oil.

Oil & water, baby,

BadWitch

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Dear Auto Affixiation,

So be girlfriend, you mean you are her automatic auto mechanic? Did you know you were signing on to this job? Sounds like there should have been a clear contract that discussed job duties in this relationship.

I would say it looks like it’s time for a really good conversation. Dear girlfriend whom I love, you have to start taking your car to the mechanic and sucking up the cost, except perhaps in emergency because this me as mechanic thing is killing us.

I remember being asked to teach my then boyfriend (now ex-husband) how to work a graphic program and some basic maneuverability with his new Mac. After being grilled every time I offered a thought, suggestion or teaching point, I finally cut him loose. All in all, start to finish on me as his teacher lasted less than 3 hrs. I let him know he would be better served to have a teacher he trusted and a girlfriend who still liked him, which meant she was not his teacher. After less than a minute, he agreed.

Let your girlfriend know the toll it is taking on your relationship. Let her know you would not volunteer to be her go-to mechanic because she does not take care of the vehicle to what you consider a basic level of care to keep other issues from happening. Let her know you love her and are there for her in a pinch, but on the regular she should go to the mechanic she trusts—for the sanctity and longevity of your relationship. Seal it with a kiss and give her the opportunity to either stat taking better care of her car so you can help her or take it regularly to the mechanic she trusts.

Remember to make freely with the love and don’t hold any grudges. This is all about creating a boundary that supports the relationship. No hard feelings and no more mechanic duty.

Good luck,

GoodWitch

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Juicy Relationship Coaching for Leaders and Individuals.

Mondays money, work, purpose dilemmas. Thursdays family, relationships, love dramedy. Send your brewing questions on how to thrive—not just survive— modern life to: coaching@stillsitting.net.

© 2009-2017 ManifestGroup. All rights reserved.

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Willingness vs. Obligation (inspiration)

“Life is made up, not of great sacrifices or duties, but of little things, in which smiles, and kindnesses, and small obligations, given habitually, are what win and preserve the heart and secure comfort.” ~ Humphrey Davy

“Do your duty today and repent tomorrow” ~ Mark Twain

“Being willing makes you able.” ~ Rhonda Britten

“For a long time it had seemed to me that life was about to begin – real life.  But there was always some obstacle in the way. Something to be got through first, some unfinished business, time still to be served, a debt to be paid.  Then life would begin. At last it dawned on me that these obstacles were my life.”  ~Fr. Alfred D’Souza

“No man is free who is not a master of himself.”  ~Epictetus

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Juicy Relationship Coaching for Leaders and Individuals.

Mondays money, work, purpose dilemmas. Thursdays family, relationships, love dramedy. Send your brewing questions on how to thrive—not just survive— modern life to: coaching@stillsitting.net.

© 2009-2017 ManifestGroup. All rights reserved.


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Addicted to Love: Buffy the Slayer…of Exes

Just as old music videos and TV series hold a fun and retro charm, they’re not reflective entertainment of who you are today. Not toying with people’s hearts, either.  — BadWitch

Readers Are Spellbound & Perplexed…

Dear GWBW — In college I was engaged to this guy. Then I decided I was way too young to be that serious and broke it off with him as nicely as I knew how, but he was still heartbroken and took a long time to get over me. Well he just showed up again 7 years later, I was stupidly weak, between boyfriends and started it up again. I guess I just felt lonely and this was there, so easy. Now I’ totally regretting this. How do I break up with this nice guy again? —Guilty Feet

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Dear Guilty Feet,

Honey, you need to buy a vowel and solve the puzzle of what you want in relationships — and stop using other people as convenience appliances for your amusement. It’s clear your ex-/current/ex-/current b/f is not like me, because I’d never allow someone to push and pull me as you have him over the years, so it’s very likely he won’t appreciate my answer any more than I expect you will. Yet, I manage to continue. Very simply: you both will benefit from identifying and acknowledging that whatever it was that was so great back in the day is over (developmentally), and if it is not, it’s still not the same warm-fuzzy relationship you had as kids because you’re not the same people today. Seven years completes one cycle of personal growth and living (if nothing else, physically you don’t have the same hair, skin or…heart!). Move on, both of you. This hanging on, fall-back default is not a healthy way to have relationships (for different yet co-dependent reasons of both of you), and hey, Guilty Feet?, you will benefit from working on getting over your need for blind adoration. That will be the best thing you can do for this “nice guy” once and for all.

Time for a new dance,

BadWitch

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Dear Guilty Feet,

Well, it’s complicated. First thing I’m going to say is, “STOP BEATING YOURSELF UP!” You said you would date the guy again, not commit to bearing his children. You tried again, admirable. You had the courage to see if there was something still there. Now you know there is an end date. Don’t blame yourself because this is not a long-term relationship. Take a deep breath and figure out how to let him down easy.

Realize that he may be a nice guy, but don’t allow yourself to be manipulated into staying in the relationship. Verbal abuse and emotional manipulation that make you responsible for his happiness is just not ok.  He is a grown man who must learn to deal with disappointment—whether in relationships, career or other situations. That is life.

Your job is to be sure to be compassionate. You two have a relationship and history, which does not mean that just because your romantic relationship is ending all communications and friendship has to end with it. Be honest and straight-forward and communicate your intent to end the romantic portion of your relationship.

Let him know that he is a good person. Let him know that you do not like disappointing him and that although some of the hurt may be inevitable, there is light at the other side of this juncture. Compassion is king. Here are some tips on how to do the break up thing, but really first forgive yourself for the last time. Doing what is right for you will sometimes leave others with hurt feelings. It is inevitable. You cannot make everyone happy all the time. Forgive yourself, be truthful with him and do what has to be done before the infection of resentment sinks in.

The truth will set you free,

GoodWitch

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Juicy Relationship Coaching for Leaders and Individuals.

Mondays money, work, purpose dilemmas. Thursdays family, relationships, love dramedy. Send your brewing questions on how to thrive—not just survive— modern life to: coaching@stillsitting.net.

© 2009-2017 ManifestGroup. All rights reserved.

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Willingness vs. Obligation (BW)

I have a lifelong policy of banning “obligation” from my life. The action bit of that noun, I mean. As a hyper-responsible type, I’m not worried this might lead me to confusion of becoming reckless or neglectful of what needs to get and be done in my life. I just want to avoid becoming bitter and/or going numb. Simply put, my criteria for doing things that are required in life are I: 1) need to for survival (i.e., bill paying); 2) want to (pay extra for eating out); or 3) have a passion to (create, share or help expand someone or –thing, or my capacity/self). As a result, my energy that goes into doing a thing because of either of those categories is positive, if not downright peacefully easy and light.

But even all good, enduring philosophies do not go untested in life. After all, that’s what we (literally) live for: to learn lessons. What to do when life throws you the inevitable tests that make you want to run and hide from a responsibility, or throw things, preferably messy breakables? Find your own personal mantra (I have repeated, “There for the grace of god go I,” — uhhm, quite a lot) and if the going gets really tough, I find the best method of embracing something while tamping down your own discordant ego is to jump for joy and say out loud(ly) how much you are grateful for doing this thing, for example, “I am so blessed to have X in my life to (manage/take care of/pay for, etc)! I love learning how lucky I am to have simple lessons like this to teach me! I’m happy I’m starting to be less frustrated by X each day!!” Really make the statements as ridiculous, loud — but true — as possible. Do not lie to yourself (e.g., “I love doing this work!”) when a thing/your attitude has not shifted yet. You will only be putting that into your system (brain, body chemistry, body memory), too. Only re-program with the truth and — don’t forget to LAUGH OUT LOUD at how silly your own ego makes you feel when you do this exercise.

Do you do things in life because you feel duty-bound and obligated, as a habit? How do you expand your willingness in life, most especially when it is most challenging? — BadWitch

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Juicy Relationship Coaching for Leaders and Individuals.

Mondays money, work, purpose dilemmas. Thursdays family, relationships, love dramedy. Send your brewing questions on how to thrive—not just survive— modern life to: coaching@stillsitting.net.

© 2009-2017 ManifestGroup. All rights reserved.

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Lawbreaking Friend vs. Your Ethics

To snitch or not to snitch? That is the update, Shakespeare. Preserving your ethics when friends do break the law.    — BadWitch

P.S. HAPPY VETERAN’S DAY (enjoy this well done and helpful video). Much gratitude to those who served and sacrificed.

Readers Are Spellbound & Perplexed…

Dear GWBW — A friend I love did something illegal I can’t tell you the details of. What do you do if a close lifelong friend does something like this? Do I turn him in? — Shawshanked Heart

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Dear Shawshanked Heart,

Ah, ethics. Yo, Shawshanked, we may be without the details, but I think you know exactly what you must do. I think you’re here for permission to do a hard thing. While it is always about increments and degrees of a thing’s severity, truth and sticking to your own ethics and values don’t shift. Speak up and separate his crime from yours of being a silent accessory after the fact. If you are so bothered by the bad behvior(s) of a loved one, I think you owe it to yourself and him to do the right thing…the one in your heart. Not saying it’s easy. They call it “tough love” for a reason. Sometimes truth telling is hardest for the truth sayer to do, when a loved one is involved. You already feel what you know you should do – now give yourself the courage to do that thing that represents your own best self.

Here are two very different yet related questions you might want to review.

Good luck,

BadWitch

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Dear Shawshanked Heart,

Wow. This is a very heavy issue and without knowing the severity of the crime, whether someone was hurt by these actions, it is very hard to answer this question. This is firmly somewhere in the middle of some deep gray areas.

If the issue is your conscience AND no one was hurt in the making of this criminal action, then one must wonder whether saying anything is for the defense of your own moral high ground and/or revenge. Did your friend brag or pour a guilty heart in front of you? Was this information shared as a deep bonding moment of deepest secrets? Would you respect yourself if you broke a confidence and broke someone else’s heart by telling what you know? Sometimes the moral high ground is not really very high if you have to betray and hurt others to take it.

On the other hand, if your friend did something in which other people were hurt then it becomes a whole different story. You wonder how many people VanderSloot bragged to who never mentioned a thing to the authorities, despite the fact that a girl is missing and her family continues to mourn and search for her.

In a case such as this, with victims, it may be necessary to move beyond weighing your loyalty to a friend and responsibility to the larger community. If you think there is any chance that this illegal act might happen again, you will need to step forward before anyone else is hurt.

Whatever the specific details, just be sure you are not stepping in to take over someone else’s karmic lessons [link: Whatever the specific details, just be sure you are not stepping in to take over someone else’s karmic lessons — either by telling because he has to pay for minor sins or not telling when others may be put in harms way. I appreciate how and why you wrote to us looking for input, but really, you must judge what is right for your own soul. Will you harbor guilt (a depleting emotions) because you said nothing? Can you live with yourself if this person commits this act again?

Pray over this answer because you will be affecting your friendship and his life. Felons don’t just pop back into society with ease. Jobs are barred. Housing is barred. In the end, just make sure you are doing the right thing in your heart for the right reasons.

Good luck,

GoodWitch

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Image: Avada Kedavra

Juicy Relationship Coaching for Leaders and Individuals.

Mondays money, work, purpose dilemmas. Thursdays family, relationships, love dramedy. Send your brewing questions on how to thrive—not just survive— modern life to: coaching@stillsitting.net.

© 2009-2017 ManifestGroup. All rights reserved.

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Fashion Trend: Good Choices Best Accessory

Playing dress up is for kids. To riff on Madonna, grown-ups dress themselves in their love. Finding balance in and out of your closet for every budget.  — BadWitch

Readers Are Spellbound & Perplexed…

Dear GWBW —i know this is my own fault but I was always known for having the hottest clothes and accessories of all my friends. Now I’m learning how to pay off my debt, and that makes me feel good every month. My problem is that I am going crazy not being able to go shopping and feel I have to still keep my image up. Can I buy one nice thing every month since my bills are going down? — Undressed for Success

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Dear Undressed for Success,

Honey, I feel your pain in the wanting to buy nice things department (but you’re not going to like my answer). Congrats on starting to get your bills under control— that’s huge — unfortunately, you had not learned to curb your impulses (leading to habits) earlier, and are now paying the consequences and (literally) the bill that’s come due. Throwing the baby out with the bathwater (by not shopping) doesn’t work in most cases. Try to come to a balance, and I’m not talking about just your shopping.

Your thinking is what begins the chain of events that ends with your monthly bill paying (literally and figuratively). Realize that our fast food, instant gratification society is an outgrowth of lazy and poor thinking, immature behaviors, and an insecurity that comes from…somewhere. It’s never too late to get with your own best program, and good choices does not equal all work and no play, no fun. Privately take genuine and deep inventory about how you feel about your self, choices you have made (still not talking shopping yet; what choices did you make from school, to acquaintances, friends and lovers — the people and influencers with whom you have chosen to share your life). Get naked! Really see what priorities you’ve made, what messages you’ve bought into about “success”…in other words, the life you have chosen for yourself. True examination helps lead to a life lived well, better, best for each of us. There is no blame or shame in this game I’m suggesting to you. When you know better, you can do better. Live consciously.

Window dressing always optional,

BadWitch

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Dear Undressed for Success,

Well, first off, I don’t know your budget, the amount of your debt or your shopping habits. But, I will say, paying off your debt and learning to live with less, BRAVO! Not an easy thing to change your lifestyle around.

And, let’s face it, keeping up with the image of the joneses is an addiction not easily walked away from — which is where I think your current state of discontent arises. You’ve carefully crafted a reputation of being “It” with all the hot clothes and accessories. You’ve crafted an image of yourself as carefree, stylish and solvent, though you were digging yourself deeper into debt. You certainly were not alone in this. Let’s face it, living within our means has not been considered chic for some time.

But the readjusting can feel like you are being punished, rather than doing something positive for yourself. A couple of tips:

1. Don’t try to diet or restrict your habits in any other ways until this new lifestyle becomes second nature.

2. Do not restrict yourself to the point of feeling pained. At some point the pressure will become so much that you really may blow your progress thus far in one ultimate shopping extravaganza. Not good.

3. Do allow yourself to buy one item every month, as long as ALL monthly bills are paid (at least minimum amounts, preferably more for the sake of your interest and long term financial security).

4. Do not buy designer straight off the rack. You will pay full 3-4 digit prices for these items. Shop designer overflow stores like TJ Max (Yeah, I said it) or designer recycled clothing stores like Cross Roads Trading.

True, you may no longer be ahead of everyone else’s curve, but you’ll be looking like a hot fashionista to your friends while looking like a responsible adult to yourself, your bank teller and your creditors.

And one last thing, who you are and what people love about you may be your knowledge of fashion and your love of cutting edge culture, but if they are only in love with what “Fashionista Barbie/Ken” looks like and the benefits they believe that are somehow conferred upon them by hanging out with said Barbie/Ken, please kick them to the curb with your Manolos. Users have no place in your life and certainly not driving you further into debt to satisfy their vampiric needs.

Do it for you,

GoodWitch

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Juicy Relationship Coaching for Leaders and Individuals.

Mondays money, work, purpose dilemmas. Thursdays family, relationships, love dramedy. Send your brewing questions on how to thrive—not just survive— modern life to: coaching@stillsitting.net.

© 2009-2017 ManifestGroup. All rights reserved.

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The Tao of Tipping

Servers live and pay the rent by tips. Not all servers are an automatic 15%. What’s the rule? — BadWitch

Readers Are Spellbound & Perplexed…

Dear GWBW — Do you recommend tipping 15% or by the level of service? My brother and I have fought over this at the table. Tipping Point

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Dear Tipping Point,

Come on now, people! Everyone knows American service industry folks work a usually hard and dirty tough job for next to or minimum wage to pay the rent — this means they’re clearly working for tips. Sure as with the rest of life, not all servers are created equal. But tips are not some charitable nicety you bestow on a lowly server from your station above when the generosity whim hits you. Unless your server is completely inept, rude, or otherwise not doing her/his job (then use your discretion), BadWitch says tip starting at 15%. Additionally, percentages are percentages, but if you happen to frequent small neighborhood buffets, diners or other inexpensive eateries more than you go to costly restaurants, maybe you might consider carefully weighing your number of visits to the level of service against the fact that these working people have to make it up with volume over big ticket size. Help a (good) server out!

Service is as service gets,

BadWitch

P.S. This fighting at the table thing…be the sort of diners you would like your servers to be on their side of the public (not your kitchen) table, and the whole eating out experience will likely be a lot more appetizing for everyone.

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Dear Tipping Point,

Gratuity should be based on your level of appreciation for the service received balanced by the knowledge that your waitperson has to pay their rent from your offerings. Get it. If you receive great service, where the waitperson has really contributed to the overall enjoyment of your meal—through personality, exceptional service, etc—why would you only leave 15%? Encourage that person to keep doing a great job by reflecting your appreciation in the tip: 20%, 30% or more.

Of course, now with service the service industry expecting customers to tip because the person put a scone in a bag because they pay their workers so poorly, the debate over tipping has only heated up. So, spend what feels right and affordable for you. It is a comment on the service, not a way to impress others with how much money you have or show how good you are to the help. It is a comment to say, “you did a great job,” or, well, we all know the other side of that coin.

Once I left a penny tip. Why? The waitress was rude, as hell, got my order wrong and then tried to make me feel like it was my fault. By the time she slapped the missing piece of my order on top of the same I-said-no-coleslaw-plate, I decided leaving her no tip would not truly reflect how much I did not enjoy her service. So I left her a penny. She threw it at me as I walked out the door. I caught it and said, “Thank you.”

That being said, I worked as a waitress throughout my college career and after. I used the money earned to pay for rent, books and food. I worked hard and tried to give people good service because I understood that I was a part of their lives for this little interval and could make their meal great or suck, if I so chose. My attitude almost always got me great tips. Yes, sometimes I was stiffed. Once a family ran out on a check. (Nice example for the kids, huh.) Another time, a patron yelled at me (he was not having a good day) and announced to the dining room he would not be leaving me a tip because of my incompetent service. I felt like crap, smashed a tray in the break room where no patrons could here and walked back out with a smile on my face. Every other table in my section left me a huge tip. One table told me straight up it was because that guy had been such a $#&% and I kept on rolling.

All this is to say, please tip your server if they give you good service. It is a difficult job that requires memory, stamina, multi-tasking abilities, good humor, PR, finessing the egos of the kitchen and coordination. It ain’t easy and base salary is almost non-existent. But when it is done well, it can make your meal pleasant and delicious. Isn’t that worth showing some appreciation for?

Love from a standard 20% tipper,

GoodWitch

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Juicy Relationship Coaching for Leaders and Individuals.

Mondays money, work, purpose dilemmas. Thursdays family, relationships, love dramedy. Send your brewing questions on how to thrive—not just survive— modern life to: coaching@stillsitting.net.

© 2009-2017 ManifestGroup. All rights reserved.

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