The first guest blog I wrote was for shylebrandi.com and I talked about relationships. Relationships are the main thing that drives us as humans. It is what motivates our thoughts, feelings, and behaviours. That’s why I feel passive aggressive behaviour can be one of the most toxic things for our souls and relationships. Passive aggressive behaviour is defined by:
“of or denoting a type of behavior or personality characterized by indirect resistance to the demands of others and an avoidance of direct confrontation, as in procrastinating, pouting, or misplacing important materials.”
Yes you read that correctly: it’s an indirect resistant and an avoidance of direct confrontation.
I have been the passive aggressive gal. I have said the comments., “You should know what you did wrong.” I’ve said, “I’m fine.” I’ve slammed doors. I’ve said “I’m sorry” then followed it with “but you did this” (PS my wise oldest sister says if you say “BUT” after the word sorry you have completely cancelled your apology). I’ve even done the dreaded silent treatment – so grade 8 behaviour.
Do you know what I felt every single time I behaved this way? Power. Passive aggressive is 100% manipulation and with manipulation comes a sense of power. I could get the attention I wanted and leverage. When doing these above behaviours I caused a power imbalance and make the person grovel, text me 90 times, or call till I eventually pick up. There is a high that comes from watching someone try to figure you out like a jigsaw puzzle and bend over backwards to make the silence or resistant stop.
By the time I started dating my husband Rob I was so over the passive aggressive game that had caused so much drama in my life. We agreed to take everything at “face value”. That whatever he said I would take it exactly how he said it. If he said he was happy, I would assume he was happy. If he said he was “fine” I assumed everything was okay! It went both ways: if I was upset, I said so.. If I was fine.. I said so. If I was pissed off because of something he did or said, I said it.
We are not perfect people nor do I want to pretend so I will share with you are big fight three days ago. Because my husband is pretty chill they usually don’t escalate but this one did. I honestly have no clue what started the fight but the great thing was it was finished in ten minutes. Our longest fight has only been twenty minutes long.. Why? Because of the habit we are in about saying exactly what we feel. Did I cry? Yes. Was he frustrated? Yes. Did we put it all on the table even though it hurt? Yes. But it felt good not to fume over it for hours.
This can be a hard and uncomfortable skill to master to be transparent but you will love the freedom and peace that comes from living life on face value and cutting the drama out of your life!