There are generally both great factors and bad reasons for speaking out or staying silent, so how do we understand which is which? All of it boils down to our own energy, and that is something we can find out how to recognize.
When Im upset by something (out of integrity) I feel a buzzing, restless energy in my body, as my ideas race around and around, thinking about what took place and what I want to state back. This is not the time to state something!
“Stability isnt a morality issue; its an energy problem.” ~ Gay Hendricks
Among the biggest concerns I, and numerous other individuals I know, face as we set about our days is this: When is it worthwhile to speak our minds, and when should we keep our ideas to ourselves?
1. Wait until you feel clear.
Generally I love old expressions and aphorisms for the knowledge they contain, however there is one that I emphatically disagree with: Dont let the sun decrease on your anger. Truthfully, in 9 cases out of ten, the much better suggestions is: Sleep on it. I cant inform you how numerous times Ive gone to sleep angry and in the early morning might barely remember what the fuss had to do with.
When your energy is swirled up and upset, its like a muddy pool that requires time to settle. You can see if theres still something there that needs to be cleaned out once its clear again.
Unless you or another person is in impending risk, your first reaction will probably do more harm than good, because your energy is so swirled up you cant see whats truly there.
The ego (your “little self”) is constantly on the protective and ready to over-react when it senses a threat. You can be sure that your ego is triggered when you feel that desire to snap and say possibly upsetting things. Its just trying to safeguard you, however frequently the damage it does to relationships (and your own wellness) is lasting. This is why my 2nd general rule is another aphorism:
2. “Least stated, soonest fixed.”
You cant un-say or un-write something you have actually stated or written (as soon as youve sent it), so err on the side of care. Don Miguel Ruíz, in The Four Agreements, states that we require to be “impressive” with our words, due to the fact that they are basically like magic spells we cast, with power to do both good and evil.
Say less than you believe you should. This is particularly helpful when dealing with a narcissist, who will try to use your words versus you or argue you out of your sensations.
The secret here– once again– is to pay close attention to your own energy. Frequently we begin a conversation with calm energy and the finest of intentions, however then find it spiraling out of control.
Some people, especially females who have been motivated to always hide or reject their anger, feel that they “need” to lose control in order to face another person. Regrettably, this nearly constantly backfires and does not produce real modification. The unfortunate fact is that when you lose control of yourself, you turn your power over to somebody else.
In my experience, the ego tends to over-explain and over-justify. There are lots of reasons for this: maybe you want to reveal how much you were harmed by what the other individual did, maybe you want to elicit an apology or an admission that you were right, possibly youre making the most of the present scenario to bring up old grievances with that person (or offer voice to free-floating anger that isnt even associated to them!).
Often you can relax your energy enough by just slowing your speech and breathing way down, taking long pauses, and focusing your attention in a soft way on the other person. (We tend to get blinders on when our energy is swirled up.).
When needed, this isnt to state that you cant reveal strong feelings. Paradoxically, you will be much more reliable and powerful in communicating them when your energy is clear.
So lets re-orient for a minute: What does it feel like when your energy is “clear?” Remember, we called this a sensation of stability or wholeness. Its a sensation of being solid and grounded in your reality. (Notice that I didnt say the reality: We can never really know what the fact is for another person, however we are constantly on strong ground when we speak our own fact.) Since the small self is persistent and so pesky in muddying up the waters, my 3rd guideline for speaking up is:.
If you need to leave, attempt not to do it as a punishment or rejection or adjustment of the other individual– simply admit that youre having a tough time keeping your own energy in control and dedicate to returning when you feel clear again.
3. Inspect your luggage at the door.
In reality, these hidden programs (and our underlying energy) typically speak quite loudly! Individuals pick up on them, consciously or automatically, and they only compromise our arguments and put others on the defensive.
On the other hand, when we speak from a clear and grounded place, that energy is checked out also, and it allows the other individual to hear even very delicate and raw interactions with an open heart.
I actually needed to utilize this rule just recently when I faced my sibling about her new sweetheart. I waited a long time to see if what I was noticing was truly something that needed stating or was simply my own ego being sad that it was “losing” something important (my siblings time and attention). Its easy to fool yourself that youre acting altruistically, when in truth your main motivation is your own perceived desires and needs.
One way to look for prejudices is to ask yourself: What outcome am I wanting to accomplish by speaking up?
As I sat with the scenario for a while, I understood that she truly had the right to her own viewpoint, and that she might have practical reasons for continuing the relationship. When I ultimately did talk with her, I acknowledged that and didnt attempt to “persuade” her to follow my recommendations. I simply informed her my worries and observations and left it there.
What made me believe I should state anything in the first place? That brings me to my final standard:.
This ended up being an important distinction for me. When I initially thought of talking with A., my motivation was to encourage her to break up with the person. (That would have made me pleased.).
4. Dont neglect your gut.
When Im distressed by something (out of integrity) I feel a buzzing, restless energy in my body, as my ideas race around and around, believing about what happened and what I desire to state back. Often you can relax your energy enough by simply slowing your speech and breathing way down, taking long stops briefly, and focusing your attention in a soft method on the other individual. (We tend to get blinders on when our energy is swirled up.).
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Learning how to understand and monitor my own energetic stability has helped me in all aspects of life, beyond simply interaction (although thats pretty essential!). Deciding whether to speak or not to speak, and what to say when we do, is a continuous issue throughout every day, and energy is the essential to communication that genuinely achieves what we want it to accomplish, with the least potential for damage.
After we spoke, my energetic quandary was fixed, despite the fact that the situation stayed the exact same. She picked to stick with him however guaranteed to be cautious and go gradually. I no longer needed to conceal my sensations (which was a relief), but I likewise quit attempting to change her habits and worked on my own concerns about the circumstance instead.
As easy as it is to get into difficulty by speaking out when we shouldnt, its equally tempting to squash our instincts to say something if we think it will be awkward, unwelcome, or “meaningless” to do so. This comes down to energy.
I waited rather a while to see if what I was picking up was genuinely something that needed stating or was simply my own ego being unfortunate that it was “losing” something essential (my sisters time and attention). Sometimes when we pick to wait, our energy clears and the situation fixes by itself.
Sometimes when we choose to wait, our energy clears and the scenario deals with by itself. Often, we continue to feel upset or to ruminate about the circumstance. If you have done this honestly and youre still troubled, that is the time to speak up.
In the case of my sis, aside from my individual unhappiness, I truly felt that she was getting in over her head with a narcissist. This put me in a bind, because whenever she would talk to me about him, I felt inauthentic and upset for concealing my true sensations.