Sure, most of the time a cold hard ultimatum will get you what you want in the moment…
But the downside is, you wind up knee deep in relationships that are ultimatum dependent. In other words the only time you can get people to do what you want is when you threaten them.
It’s Not Right Or Wrong To Use Ultimatums
The intention of this article to shed some light on what may be causing you to need to use an ultimatum, so that you don’t feel like you have to use them anymore. Because let’s be honest, there’s nothing enjoyable about having to give someone an ultimatum, or all of the other junk that comes with it because you and your relationship are now ultimatum dependent.
Now I know what you may be thinking. ‘Well how the heck am I supposed to get him to take me seriously?’ or ‘Well the only time she ever takes me seriously is when I’m ready to pack up my sh…and leave…What on earth do you propose I do then?!!
First let me say this, these are perfectly valid questions. Questions that I will answer throughout the body of this article. Also, don’t think for a second that you’re alone. Because you’re not. Or think that I’ve never been where you are… Trust me, I have been. I want you know right off the bat, that I have zero interest in telling you what to do. Nor will I ever tell you what I think is best for you.
What I am going to do is tell you what has worked for me in the past and what is working really well for my clients. So in order to get full value from this article, my invitation to you is to read this with an open mind. Swish it round and see how it feels.
Then you can choose for yourself what to do with this information. I mean seriously, if you’re reading this article, I already know that you’re smart -you don’t need anyone to tell you what to do. Trust yourself. And I will trust you to know what’s best for you. Cool? Okay good. Let’s keep moving along then shall we?
You’ve Got Bigger Issues
Now, others may think differently, but in my personal and professional opinion, ultimatums should only be used as a last resort. And even then, if you have to resort to using an ultimatum, chances are that you have way bigger problems and issues to deal with in your relationship(s) than you think.
If you’re using ultimatums on the regular my friend, it can only mean one thing. You’re not getting what you want or need in your relationship(s). Now, there can be oh so many reasons for this. From you clearly asking for what you want, to you being in a partnership with someone who’s is not a vibrational match for you, to you projecting your issues of low self-worth on to your partner, to you or your partner subconsciously sabotaging the relationships… As you can see, there are tons of reasons that may be driving you to ultimatum the people in your life to death.
But at the end of the day the real issue is that you and this other person (Or people) are not in sync. You are not aligned. If you keep using ultimatums to get what you want…
In other words if you use fear tactics to condition and force a particular response/reaction from your partner (and understand when I say partner you can insert, child, spouse, colleague, business partner or whomever), then you will forever need to use this tactic.
Further more, because they only did what you wanted when they were scared, not because they authentically and organically wanted to, they will almost always revert back to their old ways (behaviours) until you ultimatum them again. When this pattern occurs ultimatum dependency has now settled in. Can you see that you’ve got way bigger issues here?
Ultimatum Dependent Means…
Okay, so if you google ‘ultimatum dependent’, you’re not going to find anything anywhere about it.
Ultimatum dependent, is term I coined to describe partnerships where one or both partners are consistently motivated to behave in a relationally desired way in order to to avoid anticipated pain cued by the issuing of an ultimatum. People can also have an ultimatum dependency. This is where a person consistently uses ultimatums as a strategy or tactic in in order to prematurely or falsely induce a desired outcome. In my experience consequences are useful, but ultimatums are not. And many people seem to be confused about the difference between the two.
Here is the definition of consequence: a result or effect of an action or condition.
Here is the definition of ultimatum: a final demand or statement of terms, the rejection of which will result in retaliation or a breakdown in relations.
What I am suggesting here is that more of us (and in this case if you are reading this, then I’m talking to you directly), address the bigger issue -loving ourselves.
When you love yourself you are clear about what you will and will not accept and you address boundary violations on your energy, your time, your physical space and any broken agreements immediately. As such, consequences occur naturally as a result of you honouring yourself; and the people around you who are a match will respond in a way that aligns with you.
If they do not, then you can either choose to do the work to get yourselves aligned, or that person will naturally flow out of your life. That’s all I’ll say about this for now. We will come back to this whole loving yourself approach. But before we do this, it’s important that you first identify if you are currently in an ultimatum dependent relationship or if you have an ultimatum decency.
5 Key Signs of Ultimatum Dependency
- Though it’s tough for you to admit, you tend to give way too much of yourself in your relationship with others. This often leaves you feeling angry and resentful or wanting to terminate these relationships.
- Despite your efforts to try to remain calm, you find yourself getting excessively angry when your partner/friend/business partner/employee doesn’t agree with you or respond to you in a manner that you feel is appropriate. You often feel like things aren’t resolved until they agree with your point of view.
- You’re a total control freak… Um ya… And you know it! You’ll never admit to anyone else, but yes, you want people to do it your way… Because well you’re way is the better way damn it!! Okay just kidding… Or wait am I? Hmmm :-S Bottom line, you’ll do just about anything to get others to do things your way.
- You withdraw. You often find yourself having the insatiable desire to just retract or weed wack people out of your life. You distance yourself from them without communicating, purposely cutting them out of your life like ninja in the night, without them even having any idea that it’s happening.
- You flat out, in their face, threaten to leave the job, cut funding, end the relationship, or walk away from the family if ‘so and so’ doesn’t _______. Oh but here is the important part, this isn’t the first or the second time you’ve behaved this way… You do this all the time. You play this same hand over and over and over again. This is you’re ace and you know it.
Okay take a nice deep breath here. If you went through the list and you think you have a dependency don’t sweat it. Don’t make yourself wrong or think that other people are better than you or more evolved… They aren’t. There stuff is just different. Remember that this article is being written by me purely from a place of love so that it can hep you to love yourself more. Mmmmm yes. I’m here to help you or your friend (whoever you’re planning on sharing this with) . So don’t panic!
How To Cure Yourself of Ultimatum Dependency
- You have to focus on yourself. From now on commit to never ever again trying to make anyone do anything. You want the people in your life to always be acting from a place of free will period. As a whole human being in a relationship with another whole human being, you are responsible for loving yourself to the highest degree.
- They are not responsible for giving you anything. If you follow this practice people will move in and out of your life naturally. This doesn’t mean that you won’t argue and fight. Cus honey, oh yes you will! Especially if you are in a spiritual partnership, where it’s all about you helping each other to grow. But the ultimatum thing won’t be default tactic. And you’ll no longer be in partnership that feels like trying to roll water uphill.
- You have to ask for what you want every time. No more relying on expectations. Make specific requests. Keep them short and clear. And if the person doesn’t follow through address it.
. Unaddressed problems are buried bones in the backyard of your relationship. Actually no, they’re worse. So train yourself to speak up and to be heard. Train your partner to take you seriously from the get go so you don’t have to rely on fear tactics later.
- Prepare your loved ones for the new you. This step is specifically for older relationships. If up until now in your partnership with your friend, partner, employee etc. you’ve been using threats to control your partner (even if just a little), you will need to lovingly inform this person that you are doing some personal work around self-love and self-care and that part of what they may experience is a noticeable change in the way you handle conflict or make requests. Let them know that you recognize that you’ve been being ‘attached’ or ‘controlling’ and that where it’s been coming from is your own issues of self-love, self-respect, self-worth etc. You’ll need to inform them that you’re no longer going to try to use power or force to get a desired outcome and that you trust that if you’re just being yourself that none of that will be necessary.
- You will either align or you will not. And you’ll need to let your partner know that you will being more vocal about certain things not to hurt them, but to love yourself more so that you can give the relationship a fair and true chance. This will allow them to understand and prepare to be in a relationship with the upgraded version of you.
- Remember that consequences are natural. For example if every time someone says that they will pay you on a certain date and they never ever do. Then stop lending them the money. You will need to deal with your own guilt or fear about what will happen to them. But remember that is your own self-love and self-worth issue. So if you continue to lend that person money, and you suddenly get mad and give them an ultimatum, you cannot deny that you would not have been in that position had you honoured yourself and your intuition, and simply stopped allowing someone to take your money and not pay you back. Any anger directed towards that person is a distraction. In this new self-love model you know that the person you need to deal with is you. An ultimatum might get them to do what you want the next time, but I can guarantee they will dishonour you again in other ways. Why? Because you allow them to. And in not honouring yourself you are a vibrational match for more people to also do to you what you are doing to yourself.
- Without compassion nothing works.
. When we do not have compassion for ourselves, we don’t have any for others. It is important to keep in mind that when you are training someone how to treat you, they may make mistakes, mess up or completely miss the mark. Also if they are struggling with their own issues of self-love and self-worth they may not be able to express this struggle or offer you what you need. So be gentle with each other’s hearts. Pushing won’t resolve anything. It will only create a problem later on.
- Don’t suppress your anger. Use your anger in healthy ways – but it’s important to not use it as a weapon. Additionally, sometimes being loving means, allowing yourself to be angry at that person without feeling guilty or obligated to nurse them back to feeling better. As long as you are coming from a place of love and compassion you will do what’s best for the good of you both. No ultimatums needed.
Relationships are necessary for personal and spiritual development. Some relationships are easy and just flow naturally, while others… Well to say that they test us daily would be huge understatement 🙂 All relationships are mirrors. They are designed to teach us how to love ourselves, live fully and connect. In rare instances, ultimatums can be loving when used correctly. But I say, why do we have to let it come to that. What would be possible if we just loved ourselves and each other unapologetically in our relationships from day one? Or starting right now? Well now that you’ve read this article, you have the power to answer this question for yourself. Go in love.
Until we meet again be well and stay wise.
xo Renee 🙂