Bipolar Advantage

Being bipolar without disorder.

Deja Vu All Over Again

Avoiding our problems makes them just keep coming back

I was in my early 20s when we first met. She was a waitress in the restaurant where I got my first job waiting tables. I did not like her from the start and it only got worse from there.

I found her to be bossy, manipulative, petty, and self-centered. I couldn't stand working with her and determined that either she was going to leave or I would. She outlasted me and I ended up leaving within a few months.

Much to my dismay she showed up at my next job. She had a different name and a different body, but she was the same person. I put up with her for another nine months and quit again.

And there she was at my next job. She followed me from job to job for the next 20 years!

I was in my late 30s when I realized she hated me as much as I hated her. She found me arrogant, rude, condescending, and altogether a major pain in the ass.

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So we were even. Except I was the only one who felt that way about her and lots of people felt that way about me. 

It finally dawned on me that it was I who needed to change or else she would follow me around for the rest of my life. As I begun the effort to change myself, I came to realize she was a metaphor for the way life works. We can run away from our problems every time they come up, but they will keep returning until we finally face them.

So I tried to figure out why those particular traits of her's bothered me so much. Much to my dismay, I found that what I hated about her were the very traits that I had in myself yet had never noticed. She gave different words to them in her disdain for me, but they were essentially the same.

Once I set out to change myself I started to notice that she doesn't come around so much anymore. When she does I notice that I kind of like her now. I treat her much better too. I see now that she's been trying to help me all along.

What person or experience keeps visiting you? What is she trying to tell you?


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© 2014 Bipolar Advantage


Tom Wootton founded Bipolar Advantage with the mission to help people with mental conditions shift their thinking and behavior so that they can lead extraordinary lives.


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