Cover image for Gridlock : finding the courage to move on in love, work, and life
Title:
Gridlock : finding the courage to move on in love, work, and life
Author:
Greer, Jane, 1951-
Personal Author:
Edition:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Doubleday, 2000.
Physical Description:
xii, 191 pages ; 25 cm
Language:
English
Added Author:
ISBN:
9780385494731
Format :
Book

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BF637.C4 G74 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks
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BF637.C4 G74 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area
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Summary

Summary

From the author ofHow Could You Do This to Me'comes a wonderful guide to taking action when we get "stuck" in our careers and relationships. Are you Gridlocked? Have you ever found yourself: Feeling misunderstood when explaining to your loved one what makes you happy? Getting anxious about meeting strangers? Longing to tell off your boss--but giving your monologue to the water cooler? Feeling guilty when you do what you want to do? Compromising in order to share your spouse's or friends' beliefs, interests/hobbies? Feeling responsible for your mother's happiness? If so, you may be experiencing emotional Gridlock. Gridlockis for anyone who has ever been stuck--in a bad relationship, career, friendship, or family interaction. In these pages you will learn not only how to identify the patterns you and your loved ones have fallen into, but how to find the courage to change them and move on. Which one of us hasn't felt trapped--in a bad relationship, a moribund career, a destructive lifestyle? And, making it worse, we often know what we need to do to change things. We just don't know how to do it, or why we keep confronting the same problems over and over. If this is a familiar scenario, for you or for a loved one,Gridlockwill be a godsend. It truly is for anyone who has ever wondered, "Is it me or is it them?"; for anyone who doesn't speak up for themselves; for anyone who thinks they could be getting more out of their relationship, their friendships, their career, or their life. Dr. Jane Greer begins by offering clear, concise explanations of why we do what we do. She then provides specific tools and skills that will help you to cut through the confusion, self-doubt, or self-sabotaging behavior that keeps you or those you know stuck. So, whether your problem is love, career, or personal fulfillment, Gridlock will offer you a way out--and up. For all those who stayed on--in jobs or relationships that hurt, rather than enhanced, their lives--GRIDLOCK is a godsend. It is for anyone who ever wondered, "Is it them, or is it me?" It is for anyone who does not feel entitled to speak up for themselves, doesn't know how to, or doesn't think they can. It is for anyone who suspects they could be getting more out of their relationships and their lives--if only they could get a jump-start. GRIDLOCK offers clear, concise explanations enabling us to understand why we do what we do, in addition to specific tools and skills to cut through our confusion and self-doubt and help us gain the self-assurance necessary to make positive life choices. Whether the problem is love, career, or personal self-fulfillment, GRIDLOCK offers a way out--and up. -->


Reviews 1

Publisher's Weekly Review

Making ample use of traffic analogies, Greer (How Could You Do This to Me?), a marriage therapist, takes her readers on a guided tour of psychological gridlock. The first two thirds of her book is devoted to identifying and understanding gridlock as it commonly occurs in relationships, careers and other areas of life, while the last section covers the cure. Gridlock, quite simply, is the inertia that keeps people stuck in situations that are physically or emotionally harmful. Often, according to the author, it signals the presence of unresolved issues from an individual's childhood. For example, someone who played a do-gooder role as the firstborn of her family might, in adulthood, develop into a "Clinger" who becomes fixated on meeting the needs of others. This pattern may result in others taking advantage of her while she exhausts herself, yet she may remain stuck because the pattern is comfortingly familiar. While it is common for those in gridlock to rationalize their emotionally mired state and to blame others for their circumstances, the only sure way out is to take a proactive role in life. In spite of a flawed assessment tool (the "Gridlock Questionnaire") with ambiguous scoring instructions and a confusing interpretation, Greer's advice, based on her clinical experience, is sound. (Apr.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved


Excerpts

Excerpts

How to Spot a Dead-End Relationship Danielle, a public-relations executive whose client roster reads like a Who's Who in film, politics, and media, seems to have it all. Dressed in a black sheath and Sabrina-heel shoes, her pale-blue pashmina shawl casually wrapped around her toned shoulders, she sank into the couch in my office with a deep sigh. "I'm thirty-four, I manage a bicoastal PR agency, I've already made more money than my parents ever did--and I'm miserable," she said, her steady voice belying a barely concealed anxiety I've come to recognize in many young women these days. "I've exceeded my dreams," Danielle continued. "For the past ten years I've poured every ounce of energy into my work. I've loved it, and I'm very proud of what I've accomplished. Not to mention the fact that it's extremely glamorous to fly first class, eat at fancy restaurants, and hobnob with people whose names appear in boldface in the gossip columns. But though I've worked hard to get here, the truth is, I'm burned out. And lonely. I'm dating two men--if you can call it that. I hardly see either of them because of work conflicts. And there's been no one special in my life for years. Considering my hours, how could there be? I can't find time to take care of a dog, let alone a relationship. But I'd be lying if I said I loved being single. I want a meaningful relationship with someone who thinks I'm special. I want to be married. I want a child. Yet I feel trapped, and it's all my own fault. Some days I think about quitting, even though the very idea is terrifying. How would I support myself? But if I don't, I'm heading toward a goal that no longer holds any meaning for me. Does this make any sense? I always thought this was what I wanted to do with my life, but now I'm not sure. I don't know what to do, and I feel so stuck. Am I expecting too much?" Like many of her contemporaries, independent, spunky Danielle has earned an impressive reputation and a résumé to match. But on a personal level, she's nowhere near where she wants to be. The pride she justifiably derives from her accomplishments is tinged with anxiety; the joy of reaching a goal, shadowed by the loneliness of crawling into bed each night alone. Depressed and confused, she doesn't know what to do or where to turn to relieve her pain. "This is one problem I just can't fix," she said sadly. And so the woman who seems to have it all stays stuck. She's hit gridlock. At one time or another, you probably have, too. Although the people or situations may change, gridlock's impact remains strikingly the same: You are not getting what you want and need in love, in work, or in life--and chances are you never will. You are stalled in a relationship or a situation that is empty, unfulfilling, or hurtful. Yet, for reasons you can't fully understand, you hang on and continue to rationalize what you are doing and why you are staying in a dead-end situation that is clearly toxic to your emotional and physical well-being. Gridlock is the inertia that keeps you stuck. It is all those experiences trapped in your unconscious mind that are replicated over and over again in each relationship you have and each life choice you make. When you're gridlocked, you feel angry, edgy, or frustrated, yet you're unable to put your finger on why a particular person, work situation, or life choice is so damaging to your self-confidence and self-esteem. You are giving too much to, and getting too little back from, people who seem unavailable and unsupportive. You feel defeated, hopeless, and above all, trapped in a position that is clearly unyielding--but you have no idea how to move on. Moreover, you're not entirely convinced that you should. You inhabit an emotional wasteland. Your head tells you one thing, your heart another. What Keeps You Stuck? If you're reading this book, you're probably hungry for more passion, enthusiasm, challenge, and stimulation in some area of your life--and you'd like to think you're flexible and responsive enough to find it. You've always assumed that at least in some ways you're the master of your own fate. But sometimes attaining such a seemingly simple goal means relinquishing all that is secure--and that can be a terrifying prospect. Each step forward may entail a step away from the familiar into the confusing nowhere of in-betweenness. One reason is the dual nature of change itself: It can fill us with a sense of excitement, the promise of something new, and the deep satisfaction of having met a challenge we thought unattainable. But it can also flood us with dread. Letting go when you don't know what lies around the corner, coupled with fear of the struggle you must go through to get there, can be overwhelming. Taking a chance on change means putting your emotional security at risk--an often immobilizing proposition. Even positive change--a job promotion, a new baby, a move to a larger apartment in a nicer neighborhood, getting married, winning an award or competition--can trigger anxiety that you will be unable to meet your own, and everyone else's, expectations. Then, too, each new beginning involves a loss of some kind. Ending a marriage or a friendship, saying good-bye to a person or situation always entails relinquishing the sense of control or the feeling of being loved and supported that the person or situation provided for you. You may be thrilled to be pregnant for the first time but sad, worried, and angry at your new baby's intrusion into your life and your inability to find half an hour alone with your husband. Even something seemingly silly can provoke the same feelings of unsureness: Dana, a thirty-two-year-old buyer for a department store, recalled how unsettled she'd felt during the first few weeks at her new job in a new city: "I'd worked at my old company since I'd graduated from college, and I was really psyched to move on. But for the longest time I couldn't get my bearings. My routines were off, and everything was so unfamiliar. I hadn't realized how much I had counted on the small stuff to give me a sense of solidity: The guy at the deli who knew just how I liked my coffee and corn muffin . . . the checkout girl at the supermarket who'd cash a check for me when I ran short and the banks were closed. I'd moved into my work mode far more easily than it took to rebuild those outside connections." Excerpted from Gridlock: Finding the Courage to Move on in Love, Work and Life by Jane Greer, Margery D. Rosen All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.