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Section 27
Domineering Resident Technique #12
Are You Afraid of Your Domineering Resident?

Table of Contents | NCCAP/NCTRC CE Booklet

You may or may not be "afraid" of your Domineering Resident or "afraid" of setting limits with him or her.  However, in order to have an evenly balanced program you need to continually be setting limits with the one or two domineering residents you have in your facility.  Here’s information regarding how to handle your fear, not only related to possibly setting limits with your Domineering Resident, but fear related to other relationships in your facility.

However, you may say "Me? Afraid of my Hester!  No way!"  If you do not feel a certain small knot in your stomach when you approach her, perhaps use this Section of the Manual to focus on another person in your life whom you anticipate with fear.

How is your life limited by your fear? What are you not doing that you’d really like to do? When you use fear to your ad­vantage by tackling those things that evoke a sense of excitement, fear becomes an ally. Each experience provides a challenge and an opportunity to expand your comfort zone.

The way to create an extraordinary life is to make the challenge
of fear work for you by building your courage muscles.

Take Action! Build Your Courage
To begin the process of building your courage, you’ll want to set yourself up to succeed. Any courageous act can be made easier with the right inspiration and preparation. To do this you might consider three things:
1.    Support
2.    A history of success
3.    A courage talisman

1. Support
Having someone in place both before and after taking what you might consider a difficult step can't help but facilitate your success. That way, regardless of the outcome, you end up with a supportive friend who makes you feel okay about what ever happened. There are a number of ways to use the support of others. For example, if your courageous act in­volves talking to that Domineering Resident, you might ask a significant other or staff member to listen as you practice what you will say based on ideas presented in this Manual.  Have a friend available to speak with you once you have had the conversation with your Domineering Resident. Or if another staff member has mentioned successfully confronting your Hester in another area, speak to him or her so you know what they did and how they "handled" her.

Who is a supportive friend or staff member to talk to prior to confronting your Hester, perhaps to role play with, perhaps to get ideas regarding how to approach Hester, and/or to use as a source of support following your encounter with your Hester?

2. A History of Success
The next way to set yourself up to succeed with your Hester is to create a personal reminder of your strength and ability to handle what comes your way. To do this, take out your journal and write the following:

Three challenges that I’ve successfully handled in the past are:




Next, ask yourself the following three questions:
    1.    What qualities or characteristics allowed me to handle the challenges I listed above?
    2.    In what ways was I resourceful?
3.    What did I learn from these experiences that might serve me today with Hester?

By doing this exercise you may be able to create a written reminder of your strengths and abilities. By flagging this page in your Journal you can refer back to it during those times when you feel afraid and question your abilities.  Write your answers below.

1.    What qualities or characteristics allowed you to handle the challenges you listed above?

2.    In what ways were you resourceful?

3.    What did you learn from these experiences that might serve you now?

3. A courage talisman
Finally, as you prepare to build your courage, consider finding some symbol of courage—a talisman or good luck charm of sorts. It could be a quote for a book, a figurine, visualization of a powerful animal like a lion ,  or any thing to remind you of courage.  Your talisman creates a sort of mental security blanket for you. 

What will be your talisman?

Whether you are afraid to confront a Domineering Resident, a particular staff member, or to sign up for a meditation class, makes no difference.  As you know, what feels scary to one person may feel like a piece of cake to another. The only way to learn how to face the challenge of fear is to practice, practice, and practice. Remember, when you take well-prepared action in spite of your fear, you gain energy. Oftentimes the excitement that comes from pursuing something that will change your life for the better will fuel your efforts.
- Adapted from Richardson, Cheryl.  Stand Up for Your Life. The Free Press, New York, 2002.

Commit yourself to a course of action!  Re-review the 12 Sections in the Manual.  Replay the DVD.  Then make an action statement below regarding the ideas, techniques, and strategies.  This Manual and DVD can be a reference manual, a tool you will refer to often.  Perhaps one time you thumb through it you will find one or two ideas that resonate or seem to fit with you.  The next time you may find four or five or none.  After that you may find several again.  Where will you start?  What action will you take regard an idea(s) in this Course?




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