“Almost all of our sorrows spring out of our relations with other people.”– Schopenhauer
This phrase from Schopenhauer (a famous old German philosopher) appears at the real introduction of Glaen.
Now, bear in mind that broken clocks are right twice a day (the ones with hands); and, so too can German philosophers!
Think about your own life. Look at your sorrows. Do you see people in it? If they were different or treated your in a different way would your sorrow diminish (or perhaps disappear)?
The truth is that this relationship stuff is absolutely everywhere. It is at work, at home, in Starbucks, and especially around holidays! We all struggle, and most of our struggles come down to one simple word: Manipulation.
Manipulation is where people are busy trying to get us to do something they want us to do, but they are trying get us to do it in a clandestine way. By clandestine I mean ‘not straightforward’ and usually controlling. How do they manipulate? Well, words and actions are the best tools. They are trying to ‘force us to do what they want’—just like a clever salesperson or a child having a tantrum. Here’s the problem, we are doing it too! We are using our upsets and our words to give other the ‘job’ of doing things we want in the way we want them done! Manipulation kills relationships because it takes away our freedom to be ourselves…and…takes the exact same thing away from others. Relationships happen when two people connect as who they really are!
You know you don’t like it…guess what…they don’t either!
GLAEN is largely about this issue and how to stop! In the meantime, here’s a tip:
***Why not INVITE people to do things you want rather than DEMAND it?***
An invitation can be turned down, a demand cannot be turned down. Inviting is very powerful and works with spouses, waitresses, lunch partners, etc. Yet, it always must be a REAL invitation BEFORE you give it. A real invitation means that you have pre-decided that they can turn you down! You can sure HOPE they’ll accept the invitation, but they can sure say, “No.”
This isn’t the total cure to the ‘sorrows that come from our relations with others’–but it’s a great start!
Get after it,
P.S. Please get a copy of GLAEN and tell 5 others what it’s meant to you. I heard of someone this weekend who just read it twice— and suddenly realized how he/she had been messing up his/her relationships! That is exactly why this book was written the way it was. Dozens and dozens have told us they’ve read it twice (once for the story-fun—and then they read it again for the principles).