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

Why do I always do the right thing for the wrong people?

Right thing for wrong people

Chances are if you’re a people pleaser you are indiscriminate about whom you care about.  You do for others what you should be doing for yourself.   As an accommodating and passive, non confrontational and easy-going person, hours are spent worrying about doing the right thing. Or worse; worried about the past.  The past which is gone and can’t be changed.  Insecure and terrified about hurting other people’s feelings and doing what others want is the go to behavior of people pleasers; affectionately know as doormats.

When you give to like-minded people the rewards of you selfless behavior is acknowledged, appreciated, valued and loved.   But when the recipients of your good heart and intentions are narcissists, there is zero benefit. You’re left feeling judged and worthless. Nothing you ever do is good enough and they manipulate and dictate your every move according to their needs.

Why would anyone get involved with someone like this?  I believe it’s  a subconscious choice because narcissist are drawn to good-natured folks like us;  just like bees to honey.  They  disguise their ulterior motive and agendas until confidant they have us under their evil spell.  By the time we realize the one-sideness of the relationship it takes a long time to make a final exit.  But exit we must.

 

 

By | 2017-10-18T11:29:41+00:00 October 18th, 2017|Miscellaneous mattiness|2 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

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

Welcome 2017 Happy New Year

Thank you to all who visit, comment and share The Society for Recovering Doormats. Wishing everyone a safe, peaceful, healthy and happy new year.  Sending big hugs and much love to all.   *Ivy Tobin aka Rose Gardner.

For newbies here:  *Ivy Tobin aka Rose Gardner:   I am an author and Rose is my alter ego.  I use her strength to help others stand up and speak out and realize they are not alone.

We’re all standing up and speaking out together.  Rose can always lead the way,  sometimes as a conduit for all struggling. Or just someone to reach out to on-line when no one else will listen.

Ivy is a recovering doormat, trying my best my best to stay off the floor. 

happy-new-year

By | 2017-01-01T13:09:21+00:00 January 1st, 2017|Miscellaneous mattiness, Uncategorized|2 Comments

I’m doing the best I can and that’s all that matters.

i-will-ignore-others-judgements-about-me

 

How many times have we accepted others views without question? Allowed their thoughts to reign supreme and leave our own opinions unspoken. Or IF we speak out, and our ideas are met with disapproval, contempt, and invalidated, remain silent and allow others to feed our self-doubts.

People pleasers, aka doormats, accept others negative views as absolute truth because we’re programmed not to make waves, or disagree.  Stuffing down our own feelings and opinions is harmful and results in self-doubt, low self-esteem and inordinate amounts of stress.  Allowing other people’s thoughts and values to govern our lives is dangerous because it determines our self-worth.

STOP listening to other people. 

Being aware of this pitfall is an important step in recovering from doormatism.  Knowing that other’s value judgements don’t matter is freeing!   Validating our own efforts, accomplishments and self-worth is all that’s important.

We are doing the best we can and that is enough.

By | 2016-12-20T13:50:21+00:00 December 20th, 2016|Miscellaneous mattiness|5 Comments

We. Must. Hope.

The world is in flux, with nothing  certain or guaranteed except more confusion and uncertainty.   During these turbulent times we must not give up hope.  Now, more than ever, it is vital keeping our priorities straight and not participate in dramas we can’t control.

Focus on what we can do to help bring forth a better and brighter tomorrow.

Connect with like-minded people and let the rest go.

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By | 2016-12-10T11:54:11+00:00 December 10th, 2016|Miscellaneous mattiness|0 Comments

Happy New Year

Many thanks to all visiting and sharing The Society for Recovering Doormats. I want you to know how much I appreciate your viewership here, and on my other social media platforms. 2015 was a year of life lessons and tremendous personal growth and your continued presence helps keep me off the floor too.

As the new year begins, I happily announce the drafting of my second novel.  Many have inquired what happens to Rose after  My life as a Doormat? The second book will answer that question.  Now that I’ve made this announcement public, I guess I have to really set a deadline and get this book done!Happy New Year

Wishing you and your loved ones the happiest and healthiest  New Year possible.

Much love,

Rose.

 

By | 2015-12-29T09:24:50+00:00 December 29th, 2015|Miscellaneous mattiness|2 Comments