4 Tips For Avoiding Backsliding During The Holidays

 

The holidays are tough for many recovering doormats. If you’re at a gathering where known manipulating narcissists are present, please keep in mind these 4 tips to avoid slippage and backsliding into doormatish behavior.

  1. Do not accommodate.

 This is the number one behavior to stay vigilant about.  Remember, the word NO is your best friend; everyday, and especially during the holidays. Remember to enforce your boundaries because if left unguarded the danger of backsliding into mattish behavior is imminent.

  1. Refuse to be manipulated.

By now you’re aware of whom the master manipulators in your family and inner circle are. Never relax into a comfort zone with them because that is when they will worm their way across your boundaries.

Awareness of their manipulation tactics is the most important step to avoidance. Their tools include, but are not limited to:  flattery,  a noted change in their usual narcissistic behavior (being too cooperative or too nice) and offering up sob stories in hopes of eliciting pity from you.

And remember NO is your best friend.

  1. No obsessing. Period.

Recognition of obsessing is the first step for avoidance.   The next step is consciously changing what you’re thinking about. Exercise is a great mind altering tool for recovering doormats. If you can get out for a long walk or take a jog, do it!

A bout of holiday blues is normal for many recovering mats.   Holidays may stir up memories that get stuck inside our heads repeating on an endless loop. We may search for relief by over-sharing with whoever is in our company, and this is dangerous. Confiding in a professional mental health specialist is best, but if this isn’t possible, be selective about who you’re sharing your feelings with.

  1. You have a voice, and you’re allowed to use it!

 Don’t let anyone drown out your voice rendering you into a silent state of compliance. Even though it’s the holidays, you can stand up for what you want, disagree and stay true to your beliefs.

Remember;  recovering from doormatism never takes a holiday.

By | 2017-11-20T15:07:52+00:00 November 20th, 2017|Miscellaneous mattiness|0 Comments

The Society For Recovering Doormats Turns 5!


I’d been a people pleaser since childhood. Being a polite, caring, thoughtful, kind and non-confrontational person was ingrained by my Mother. I didn’t know there was an alternative way to behave and treated everyone with respect and love; except myself. Years of this behavior chipped away at my self-confidence, worth and esteem.

In my twenties, I realized something was wrong but I didn’t know what. As an actor and writer accepting rejection was my status quo and confirmed my feelings of worthlessness. Since I didn’t know there was another way to feel, I accepted my self-doubt, and insecurities as normal.

Later in life this became an ongoing conversation with my therapist.

On a hot day in July 2012, I received another rejection letter from a publisher who I’d sent a query to about my book. I stuffed the letter inside my purse and went to see my therapist. In tears, I told him I was done with writing. He suggested taking a break from submitting my book. “Why don’t you start a page on Facebook?” I wasn’t technology savvy and the thought learning social media was daunting. And besides, what would I write about? “Write about something you’re good at.” My therapist offered.

I thought for several minutes and couldn’t think of a single thing. Then I blurted out, “I’m good at being a doormat.”

“Then write about that!” His eyes light up.

I left my appointment confused, and scared. I stored his suggestion in the back of my mind. Then on a rainy night in late October I started wondering about what my therapist had said. A few days later, after figuring out how to put up a page I took a deep breath and began writing. Unsure of what I’d say, or what my page would be, I forged ahead. The only thing I knew was I couldn’t be the only person out there who put everyone else’s needs and desires first. There must be a few others feeling “less than” and not good enough. Perhaps people who were too nice for their own good needed someplace to vent, rant, and share their struggles. And so I created The Society for Recovering Doormats – A safe place for people pleasers to visit.  And visit they did, by the thousands.

Now with over 76,000 Facebook followers, I’ve expanded to other social media platforms including this blog site The Society for Recovering Doormats, INSTAGRAM, and twitter. I published my first book, My Life as a Doormat in 2014, and am working on the sequel Not Just My Mother’s Daughter.  Also in the works is a self – help book called Off The Floor.

To mark my 5 year milestone anniversary, I’ve started a newsletter which you can receive for free by signing up with your email address on this blog site.

Many thanks to all who visit and share, I appreciate you more than words can say. Here’s to another 5 years of standing up and speaking out together!

With love and gratitude,
Ivy Tobin aka Rose Gardner

By | 2017-11-06T17:48:31+00:00 October 23rd, 2017|Miscellaneous mattiness|4 Comments

Update on my second book –

I’m starting  work on chapter 13 in my next book!  Although I haven’t decided on a final title yet, I’m considering Not Just My Mother’s Daughter. 

Book 2 takes place in the early 1990’s.  Rose Gardner is faced with a new set of challenges, situations and people to stand up to. Many of the same characters from       My Life as a Doormat are featured and new ones are added as the complicated relationship between mother and daughter is explored.

Below is  an excerpt.  I’d love to hear what you think of the title, and this blurb.

Excerpt for Book 2

By | 2017-10-07T11:18:27+00:00 October 7th, 2017|Book 2 untitled, Uncategorized|5 Comments

Happy 4th of July

July 4thThis summer holiday celebrated in the USA is more than going to the beach, barbecues,  picnics and watermelon.  This holiday commemorates that we are a FREE NATION.  We celebrate this day because millions of Americans sacrificed their lives defending and protecting this precious commodity freedom.  Freedom of speech, the press and the pursuit of happiness.

By | 2017-07-04T10:37:25+00:00 July 4th, 2017|Miscellaneous mattiness|0 Comments

TURN BURN.

Turners

Beware of the turner.

Turners are usually close and trusted friends and relatives.  They are our confidants because they feel like a safe haven until  disagreeing  with them. Then, turners are vicious and nasty, just like the narcissist. But worse because we trusted them and never suspected their toxic side.

The main difference between a narcissist and turner (although they are kissing cousins) are the recognizable red flags preceding the narc.  The turner doesn’t exhibit  warning signals. Their status is only realized after burning us.  They are more dangerous than narcs because much energy,  love and trust is invested in them. Many times, we excuse away the first attack because we can’t believe our dear one is capable of this hurtful behavior.

Once a turner shows you who they are; believe them the first time.  They will do it again and again if you allow them the first trespass. Distance yourself emotionally and avoid another turn burn.

By | 2017-05-18T12:30:09+00:00 May 18th, 2017|Miscellaneous mattiness|11 Comments

We have to believe.

I believe with all my heart

With the current chaos in our world, amplified and distorted by the media 24/7, it is easy to get caught up in the turmoil. Today, more than ever, we have to believe better days are coming.  Repeat this thought often and share it with others.  As recovering doormats we can’t let these turbulent times send us back to hiding within our comfort zones.  We can’t use it as an excuse not to stand up and move forward.

I believe with all my heart better days are coming and encourage all to do the same.

 

 

 

 

By | 2017-04-06T10:52:57+00:00 April 6th, 2017|Miscellaneous mattiness|0 Comments

Got Healthy Self-Love?

healthy-self-love

 

“A healthy self-love means we have no compulsion to justify to ourselves or others why we take vacations, why we sleep late, why we buy new shoes, why we spoil ourselves from time to time.  We feel comfortable doing things which add quality and beauty to life. ”  Andrew Matthews

 

By | 2017-03-04T14:39:01+00:00 March 4th, 2017|Miscellaneous mattiness|0 Comments

You have a voice!

you-have-a-voice

Declaring your choices by speaking up is vital for all people pleasers.  Use your voice to perpetuate or negate. For initiating or terminating. You have a right to agree or refute.  All  vocalized decisions enable recovery from doormatism. 

The only decision keeping you stuck in doormat mode is remaining silent.

#standupandspeakout

#empowerment

 

 

By | 2017-02-19T11:30:06+00:00 February 19th, 2017|Miscellaneous mattiness|2 Comments

True Friends.

 

True friend

What is a true friend?  Many claim this title, but how many are mere acquaintances, people we know in passing ? Or people who disappear when we’re struggling? Or become belligerent, hostile and toxic when we express different opinions.   Perhaps some are adversaries, hiding their true agendas; like wolves in sheep clothing.  Or friends using our failures and disappointments to bolster their egos.

Today, more than ever, it’s necessary to know who’s with you.  In this chaotic climate of change and uncertainty, one thing is absolutely vital:   True friends.  

A true friend loves you at your worst, and celebrates your bests.

 

By | 2017-01-22T11:48:14+00:00 January 22nd, 2017|Miscellaneous mattiness|2 Comments

Keep Breathing.

keep-breathingThere are times when we can take action, make a positive difference by standing up and speaking out and bring about a significant, effective change. But there are those times when all we can do is keep breathing, waiting for the storm to pass.

By | 2017-01-17T12:45:53+00:00 January 17th, 2017|Miscellaneous mattiness|2 Comments