A friend of mine recently pointed out how difficult it is to have the “tough conversation” with someone. You know the kind of conversation that makes you anxious at the mere thought of what the other person might say, think, or feel if you sat them down to have a heart to heart. The truth is most of us avoid these conversations because we don’t want to hurt someone’s feelings. Instead, we sacrifice how we feel on behalf of the other person so we don’t have to feel guilty or bad. Sound familiar?…
When we do this we may think we’re protecting the other person from getting hurt, or avoiding confrontation but what we’re really doing is: a) not being honest, b) hurting them, and c) betraying ourselves. While it may be a difficult pill to swallow, if you don’t have the heart to tell someone how you really feel, you betray the other person by pretending to feel or be something you’re not. Over time, this continual betrayal of the other ultimately becomes a betrayal of the self which diminishes your inner Spirit and compromises your happiness and well being.
I know, I know for those of you who think it’s selfish to put yourself first, I would like to challenge that ideal. As a wife, mother, and energy worker one thing I have learned is if I don’t put myself first by nourishing my mind, body, and spirit, or communicate my feelings to another- I’m going to be one unhappy, overworked, overstressed mama. Think about it, if you don’t put yourself first and express how you feel, where does that leave you emotionally, mentally, and physically? Still not convinced?…
Imagine for a moment that you have a child, or a loved one who tells you he/she is unhappy and needs to have a tough conversation with someone. Would you advise them to repress their feelings, or would you advise them to be honest and express how they truly feel? Why should this advice be any different for you? Now, I’m not suggesting the conversation will be easy. In fact, it may illicit fear, anxiety, or pain on both your parts. However, let’s look at the alternative…
Emotional Harboring of: Resentment, Guilt, Fear/Worry & Anger
Emotional, Mental, Physical: Distress, Anxiety, Depression & Tension
By not having the “tough conversation” we become self sacrificing martyrs, gluttons for punishment, and besties with betrayal. What’s worse is over time all of the emotional hoarding becomes repressed and creates a physiological response within the body that can cause emotional distress, anxiety, depression, and yes- disease!
Is there a tough conversation you need to have? Are you avoiding it because you want to preserve a relationship, or protect someone from betting hurt? Have you considered that by avoiding the conversation you actually cut yourself and the other person off from growing and truly living? I would love to hear from you.
With Love & Light,