I will briefly say something about my outfit here: this is what I walked in at the Garden Party at Elisabeta Palace for King’s day. It is a vintage dress of emerald green velvet and taffeta combined with a fantasy cap by Cosmina Nicolescu – Fandacsia.
This event inspired me to say some words about femininity and quality. Here it goes.
Someone once said that a woman’s mind is cleaner than a man’s: she changes it more often.
Beside the joke, this is a fact that myself as a woman with a more masculine approach have seen it happen at some of my girlfriends. And I know that this could be a torment to a more result-oriented mind. I also am aware that I do it from time to time. In some limits this has a feminine charm. But one must carefully see the limits. The “I want this / no I don’t” game is fun as long as is accepted by both parts. If you cross the line, you will end up by annoying the other one and make him slowly (or speedily) turn away from you. And this is ok if you want that, although it would be fairer to tell him straightly that this is what you want.
How a woman can know what the limits are?
Well, this is another issue observed by men at their (unfortunately not) better halves. Women do not “listen”. I’m not talking about obedience. I’m talking about really and truly listening when someone is saying something to you. Brendan Francis said that a man is already halfway in love with any woman who listens to him. Well, he was a writer and his needs might be more complicated than others’, but he still has a point. If we listen what the other one has to say, we would see the limits of the “changing of mind” game. And if we have some inner depths, we will know if those limits come from a problem of ours or from a problem of our partner. And we can make a more conscious choice regarding the question if this is the man we want to have a relationship with, or not. In any relationship there are early signs about how the other one is thinking and how he/she sees life. If we plunge in that relationship regardless of those red lights, we cannot complain about what he/she has “done” to us. It was our choice not to see the signs. It was our choice to live the illusion, to lie to ourselves that “this is the love of my life”. Nobody does anything to us, except ourselves. If someone treats you badly, it is because you let him/her do that.
So basically you do this to yourself, because you let it happen. Walk away and solve your problems without letting anyone punish you for your faults. Skip the pattern. The others treat you badly to activate some flaws you have that you need to fix. Be aware of that, identify them and go away. It may take years to solve them or it may take days, but it’s not helping you to allow yourself to be treated poorly because of them. If this is repeating over and over again, it does not mean that the others are bad and heartless. It means that you have to work over and over again with yourself, until that flaw heals within you.
I had a friend who had an alcohol problem. People started to avoid her and criticize her. Her boyfriend left her. She would not really “listen” to those people. She called me in a rage against everything and everyone, except herself. This is not love of yourself. Every book on spirituality nowadays is talking about loving yourself and accepting yourself as you are. People don’t get the meaning of this. This does not mean that you have to indulge your flaws and expect others to tolerate them. People say that if someone doesn’t accept their flaws that person doesn’t love them, doesn’t understand them. In fact, the true meaning of the “love yourself” line is about two things:
ONE: to love yourself enough to know that you have to work with you to be better, to accept that you make mistakes, to acknowledge those mistakes, to learn not to repeat them and to forgive yourself. Not blaming others for things you do to yourself means that you love yourself. And
TWO: to love yourself means that no matter the reason, even if you are the cause of bad behavior that others have towards you, you don’t allow yourself to be treated poorly. How? In case of my friend, I told her: those people are mean to you, of course. Do you know why? Yes, they’ve told you it’s because you drink too much and you create problems and hurt their feelings. So, it’s not them. They react to your attitude towards them. The cause is your drinking. “Listen” to what they are saying to you. So, instead of blaming them, how about quit drinking for a while and see what happens? If they treat you the same, this means they have some problems, not you. And you should not allow them to treat you poorly. She tried. Her boyfriend came back to her and the friendships she had got back to normal. At first, her reaction was to blame everyone around – except her. This was not love for herself. If you love yourself you must see how some of your attitudes do wrong to you and act to change them. This is not obedience to the norm. If your friends are killers and they treat you badly because you don’t kill, this is obviously their problem and you should walk away.
The feeling of what is good for you lies deep down inside you. To “hear” it you have to sit in silence and peace and “listen” to it.
And so we’ve come to the point in which the words of Brendan Francis have a different and enriched meaning: a man is already halfway in love with any woman who listens to him. And he is totally in love (or at all – but at least you will know how things truly stand) with a woman who listens to HER.
In order to really listen to your partner, you first have to learn to listen to yourself. This is true love of yourself. What do you want, what do you need, what you do wrong, how do you feel is right in your heart. Only after you’ve done that with yourself you can truly listen to him. And see if you two are “good to go”.
Changing your mind to make it cleaner, as the joke stated, is something to drive insane any person, regardless of their gender. But if you truly love you and listen to yourself, you will profoundly KNOW what you want and you will see that you will not change your mind. At first, you will do it more rarely. Until you will not do it at all. Of course I’m not talking about extremes. I’m talking about important relationship issues. And I’m talking about not carrying your man with you when your indecisiveness kicks in – shopping spree or choosing your outfit for an event or for the daily routine, for example.
Women want respect. Newsflash: if you want respect, you have to earn it. You don’t earn respect by changing your mind with the direction and speed of the wind. And you don’t earn it by not listening to your partner and trying to manipulate him to do what you want, regardless of his plans, dreams, intentions. Sooner or later, if he is not stupid, all those “feminine and charming” weapons will turn against you.
It’s not about him. It’s about you and how can you make your life and others’ brighter and cleaner. A mind of a woman is not cleaner because it is changed often. It depends upon what it is changed with. Change is a continuous and natural process. Use it to better yourself and others. Change it after you put a lot of thought and feeling into it and change it to produce joy, not to inflict pain.
Don’t do to others what others have tried to do to you in the past. Repeat to yourself: “I have no right, by anything I do or say, to demean a human being in his own eyes. What matters is not what I think of him; it is what he thinks of himself. To undermine a man’s self-respect is a sin.”*
*Antoine de Saint-Exupery