Bulldozing (The Way To Ruin Your Relationship With Yourself) - Teal Swan Articles - Teal Swan Jump to content

Bulldozing (The Way To Ruin Your Relationship With Yourself)

I want you to imagine a bulldozer.  When a bulldozer encounters resistance or opposition, what does it do?  It drives straight through and over it. It will not stop and consider and it will not work with whatever is resisting it, so that there is any alignment.  It plays a zero sum game with whatever is opposing it. “I win and you lose. I get my way and you don’t.”

How many people in your life do you know that act like this in relationships?  Whenever they encounter anything that opposes them, they disregard it and bulldoze right through the person opposing them in any way?  It’s the parent who does not care if their child is miserable in school, and says “you’re going no matter what and don’t complain about it.”  It’s the boyfriend who doesn’t listen to his girlfriend saying she’s scared and doesn’t want to, and grabs her hand to force her to cliff jump with him.  It’s the spiritual master who says “Everything comes from your connection to god, you should not need anything or anyone and if you do, it is because you are caught in illusion”.  What all these circumstances have in common is no accommodation. To accommodate is to provide space for something in your consideration so as to include its desires or needs.  When we are bulldozing, we are refusing to accommodate. This is a recipe for disaster.

There is no possible way for someone to be bulldozed and be ok with it.  If we are playing a zero sum game, where we win and they lose (which we are if we are bulldozing) they can no longer trust us because trust is about relying on someone to capitalize on our best interests.  Trust depends on accommodation. And seeing as how to love is to take something as a part of you, if you bulldoze, you are not taking them as a part of you, you are simply running them over to get your way as if it was possible to do that and suffer no consequences yourself.  It is a recipe for relationship ruin. It is a recipe for other people to see us as the enemy, not the ally.

But this article is not about other people.  This article is about you. The reality is that no matter how good or bad you may be at not bulldozing other people, you do bulldoze yourself.  As people, we bulldoze ourselves nearly every day and we don’t even realize it; or the damage it is actually doing.

The concept of bulldozing yourself does not make any sense if you continue to see yourself as a singularity.  For this reason, you have to see that you are not a singularity. Consciousness itself functions like water. If you are looking at a river from above, you can see that a large river often branches off into smaller rivers.  Due to trauma (which occurs in all people’s lives with no exception, the question is simply to what degree) our consciousness splits just like a river does. It splits so that instead of whole, we are fragmented.

It is easier to comprehend of this process of splitting (that is fragmentation) in terms of how it affects our being by imagining that when our consciousness splits as the result of trauma, our ego splits in two.  And it can do this over and over again. This means, even though we have one body, within that body, we end up with multiple selves. The best way to picture this is to imagine that inside your body, you have a collection of Siamese twins.  They are technically all conjoined because they all share one body. But each one has its own identity, its own desires, needs, perspective, strengths, weaknesses and appearance. Some of these internal Siamese twins, we like and identify with.  Others, we dis-identify with, suppress, deny and disown.

We always have good reasons for having approved of parts of ourselves and having rejected other parts of ourselves.  But no matter how we spin it, it means that we are polarized. You have experienced this polarization any time that you come to a place where you have to make a decision and part of you says yes while another part of you says no.  When we are faced with this situation, we usually begin to play a zero sum game internally. We make a decision so the part of us that says yes has won and the part that says no loses.

It is as if the part of us that is saying NO to something is standing in front of a bulldozer being driven by our other part and instead of creating resolution so that both parts feel in alignment with the choice being made, the one driving the bulldozer simply runs right over the one protesting.  This creates an internal atmosphere of distrust. It is an antagonistic internal atmosphere.  To understand more about how this whole splitting process really works, watch my video titled: Fragmentation, The Worldwide Disease.

Here are just a minimal amount of more examples of the bulldozing that we may do to ourselves:  Part of us doesn’t want to get married, but we go ahead with it anyway. You’re terrified but you say, “I’m fine” because you’ve been taught that fear shouldn’t exist.  The circumstances have changed but you made those plans months ago so you don’t change your plans and forge ahead anyway. You are in a group and everyone wants to do one thing.  You don’t want to do it, but you force yourself to participate anyway. Your body says you’ve reached your limit but you don’t accept you have limits and push forward anyway. You really want to get a job doing what you love, but you don’t want to let your family down so you do what they want you to do.  You are tired and drained but you get up and force yourself to do what has to be done day after day anyway, no matter how you feel. You’re in pain because you lost someone but you deny it and say you don’t believe in grief or you just have to focus on the good times. We feel bad about ourselves, but we sit down and repeat “I love and accept myself” fifty times in a row.  You are a spiritual person and you are angry, but spiritual people aren’t supposed to be angry, so you suppress it and do a bunch of yoga. We feel a certain way, but we resist and deny the way we feel because we’ve already decided we shouldn’t feel that way. You get the point. We can bulldoze ourselves in all kinds of ways, emotionally, mentally and psychically. And we can use all kinds of tools and beliefs and justifications and techniques to enable that bulldozing process.

Whenever we encounter internal opposition, otherwise known as resistance, we must deal with that resistance directly so as to create a unity between the opposing sides and get them on the same page, or we will suffer for it.  To understand more about this watch my video titled: Urgent! Deal With Your Resistance Before You Do Anything Else.

We will suffer for it if we do not resolve the resistance inside ourselves because we will be trying to do things in spite of ourselves, instead of with all of ourselves.  We will suffer because it destroys self-trust and with it, a feeling of internal safety and security.  Trust is about relying on someone to capitalize on your best interests. This is NOT what is happening if one of your internal Siamese twins is not capitalizing on (or even considering) what is in the best interests of another one.  This is especially true if one of your internal Siamese twins has convinced itself that it knows what is best for the other, no matter what the other thinks or says.

If one part of you is bulldozing another, both parts are still inside your skin, this means you will feel the emotion belonging to the part of you who was just given the message, “you don’t matter, you’re powerless to get your need met or stay safe because I’m doing what I’m doing no matter what you think, say or do”.  We will suffer because our opposing sides both have a very valuable truth, which we must see deeply in order to arrive at what is truly right for us.

The time has come to commit to the practice of integration instead of bulldozing.  I call it a practice because to expect yourself to never bulldoze yourself, especially when you have been specifically trained by your society to do just that, is cruelty and you will fail at it.  But if you commit to the practice of it, you will get better and better at being in total alignment with yourself and others.

You know how painful it is to be bulldozed.  You know how painful it is to not be considered at all, because someone has made up their mind.  You know how painful it is to not be accommodated at all, and to suffer for it. Why would you be ok with any aspect of yourself feeling this way?  Aim to get your internal Siamese twins on the same page. For more information about this, watch two of my videos tiled: Get On The Same Page (Relationship Advice) and Attunement (The Key To A Good Relationship).  And when you are watching these videos, apply everything I say in these videos to your internal parts, not just to someone external that you are in a relationship with.

If we want to have good feeling relationships, relationships based on love, trust and awareness we must create relationships with people who do not bulldoze us, we must stop bulldozing other people and we must stop bulldozing ourselves.


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