Monday, October 8, 2012

Being Aware of the Unicorn Killers

Today I would like to introduce you to the women I like to call The Unicorn Killers (yes, there are male Unicorn Killers, but that's a whole other blog).  Along the lines of embracing the things that make us feel good about ourselves, I think it’s time we throw down the gauntlet and acknowledge the flip side of things, or more specifically, the people in your world or who might cross your path that tend to steal your bliss.  We can’t be sure if they are doing it intentionally or if they are just so unhappy themselves  they aren’t even aware of their behavior, but what matters most is that you are able to identify them and be ready to mentally silence their negative ways.
Let me offer a few tell tale signs of the Unicorn Killers so you can be on the lookout for them in your own life:

A Unicorn Killer is the person in the group who when you are celebrating something, no matter how big or small, can always be counted on to find something wrong with it or make it feel less than fabulous!
YOU:  “I’m so excited!  I just got a promotion at work.”
Unicorn Killer:   “Is your boss a male?  He probably has a thing for you.”
A Unicorn Killer is the person who when everybody is paying you a compliment or enjoying something they love about you will be the one who points out something that is wrong.
YOU:  “I’m so excited that I finally decided to try this new hair color.”
YOUR FRIENDS:  “It looks great, you look ten years younger, I love it.”
Unicorn Killer:  “I never noticed that line between your eyebrows before, I’ve got a great guy for Botox if you want his number.”
A Unicorn Killer is always there to remind you of your short-comings while you are on walking on Cloud Nine.
YOU:  “I just lost 6 pounds!  I can’t believe I finally got off my butt and did it! I’m so excited!”
Unicorn Killer:  “Yes, but don’t you have like 20 more to go? You’re not even half-way there yet.”

The Unicorn Killer can always be relied on to rain on your parade, give you reason to doubt yourself, or find a way to diminish your bliss and steal your rainbows!  Somehow, she is always the first one to show up when things are not going the way you hoped they would, but she is not there to offer to support, she is there to quietly say “I told you so.”
If I’m being perfectly honest with you, then I don’t mind telling you that the leader of the Unicorn Killers in my world is my mother.  Sad, but true.  She’s been that way my whole life.  I take a step forward and she reminds me of all the times I tripped and slid backward.  I accomplish something I am proud of, she reminds me of the times I screwed up or fell short.  The good news is that the older I get, and with a little bit of help from a very patient therapist, I have learned to head her off at the pass….I just don’t tell her anything.
It sounds a bit sad to admit that one of the most negative forces in my world just so happens to be the woman who is partially responsible for my being here, but unless you’re really lucky, you don’t normally get to pick your parents but you can pick your battles.
The point is not who YOUR Unicorn Killers are, but how you choose to handle them.  We can CHOOSE to permit them to continue to throw mud in our eyes,  we can simply walk in the other direction when we see them coming or teach ourselves to simply not hear them when they are speaking their usual negative language.  I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been at an event filled with throngs of women I don’t know and no matter how big or small the group is, I know that somewhere in that room is a Unicorn Killer.  The moment I locate her I make a mental note and flip the switch that will help me to not take it personally when she slings one of her verbal arrows in my direction.  People are people and each one of us has a story.  Some people take their story and use it to put good into the world, others, like the Unicorn Killers, well, not so much.  But honestly, that’s their problem and you don’t have to let it be yours.  Once again, it comes right down to choice.
It’s not our responsibility to change people, but we do owe it to ourselves to change how WE respond.  If you are aware of a Unicorn Killer in your own life, you can choose to walk away, not answer the phone, eliminate contact, and if you DO run into her, you can teach yourself to not let her words get into your head. You can take away her power by not giving her the opportunity to thwart your amazing day.  I know from personal experience that it is far easier to listen and HEAR the negative junk instead of focusing on the positive.  But what if when the negative words are headed in our direction we make a conscious choice to consider the source and flip the mental switch that is specially programmed to silence the Unicorn Killer?
Can you imagine how much more rewarding life would be if we all actually CHOOSE to listen to the good, to surround ourselves with people who lift us up and make us feel fabulous?  Each and every one of us has our flaws, the trick is to not surround ourselves with people who get some sort of twisted enjoyment by pointing them out!  If there is somebody in your life who repeatedly dims your light in order to make hers appear brighter, it’s time to make the conscious choice to distance yourself from her negative ways because anything less than that is a form of self-sabotage that you simply do not deserve!
Today I wish you the ability to consciously choose to silence, eliminate, and rise above any Unicorn Killer that might cross your path.  Instead of enabling her to invite you to doubt yourself, I would challenge you to stand up tall, smile, and remind her that you’re perfectly thrilled with you are because it just so happens that FLAWED IS THE NEW FABULOUS.

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