Prickly People (Part 2)

To navigate the emotional maze of the prickly person, after “clarity”, your best tool is “focus”.

Part of what causes prickly people to be so prickly is a disordered lifestyle or world view.  Something is out of balance.  They may deny an issue or just refuse to deal with reality.  Prickly people often project this discord externally rather than look within for their source of unhappiness, which is why you may experience them as being so prickly.

So if you happen to be along the path of the prickly person, you may have the unfortunate experience of being the target of this projection.  And if you are, this negative energy can easily distract you from the task at hand and your life mission.

“Focus” helps us realign our attention to where it should be and gain a healthy detachment from the prickly person.  We must ask, “what is our stuff…and what is their stuff?”  and address any personal areas that require improvement.  As tempting as it is to over analyze, “process”, and ruminate over the prickly exchange, we must turn our attention back to our personal mission and the next step to get back on it. Our personal mission may be attending to our kids or spouse or going to the gym or do the next task on the list.

Often the prickly person will want to drag us back into the emotional mirage.  Our detachment creates an uncomfortable vacuum  for the prickly person.  It makes it harder for him or her to uphold the façade that all of his or her problems are rooted in what we did or did not do.  The prickly person is faced with the unpleasant reality that if the source of happiness is not external, the only other place to look is within.

Some prickly people never turn things around, and others do in time.  But as Catholics, we can accelerate this progress with another powerful tool in our Catholic bag. Tune into the next blog to see what it is.

The Catholic Women’s Guide to Healthy Relationships Tip:  After distinguishing between what is your “stuff” and the prickly person’s “stuff”, focus on what God wants you to do at this moment.