"People may not tell you how they feel about you, but they always show you. Pay attention."
We spend far too much time trying to 'figure' people out and not enough time believing what they show us.
When someone treats you badly, they are showing you how they feel about you. There's no need to misinterpret actual behavior... and if you err on the side of thinking the best of people, think again.
Your 'hope' that people don't mean what they mean is the exact reason you find yourself in situations where you're being taken for granted, not appreciated or treated poorly.
And I'm not saying that someone else's bad behavior is your fault; it's not. But you allowing them to continue to show up and play a role in your life in that way is...
So what do you do when you finally believe what people show you?
How do you reset your boundaries and protect your heart when others make it very clear that they don't feel you're worthy of being treated well?
You do three things:
1. Re-evaluate the relationship. Do you really need to have this person in your life? Is this person actually contributing to your life in a MEANINGFUL way? Why are you holding on to someone who treats you like trash?
2. Re-set your boundaries with that person. If you're dealing with someone who continually treats you badly, there's a boundary that you've allowed them to trample over. It's time to reset that boundary and have a serious boundary conversation with the person where you say "This is no longer acceptable" and then you back that up with action.
3. Re-define your understanding of forgiveness and compassion. Forgiving someone for bad behavior doesn't mean you give them the ability to continue to behave that way in your life. Feeling compassion for a person who's had a tough life doesn't mean you give them permission to take out their frustrations on you. You can forgive, have compassion and feel empathy for a person who treats you badly without allowing them to treat you badly.
Separate what you forgive from what you allow and refuse to confuse the two ever again.
At the end of the day, you teach people how to treat you... So the next time you feel like allowing bad behavior in your life, remember the words of Rudy Francisco:
"Perhaps we should love ourselves so fiercely, that when others see us they know exactly how it should be done."