If you can’t say it out loud, write it down.
But it has to be the truth. YOUR truth. The whole truth and nothing but the truth.
There’s a message in that.
How can you wander the world not telling the truth?
I’ll tell you how, because you’ve become so accustomed to being all about other people, their thoughts and feelings and not about you and your thoughts and feelings.
You’ve learnt to become numb about yourself. You don’t even know what you’re thinking or how you’re feeling because you’ve become so enmeshed with everyone else’s thoughts and feelings.
If this isn’t all the way you, it might be that you have no problem saying the truth, but it gets you in trouble. You have no filter? You’re a shot gun?
Naming the elephant in the room doesn’t need to be about conflict. But it does need to be about honouring your values, being true to yourself and saying it anyway, no matter what you perceive the reaction will be.
Speaking up and standing up for yourself can be challenging if you’ve never done it before. But the more you do it, the more practiced you become, the easier it will get.
Like anything at first it will be uncomfortable. But eventually you will just be swimming in this water and you will look back and say I did it. I stayed true to myself and my values. If you don’t yet know what these are, it’s time to get insightful!
For those of you who have this other challenge where it’s like you constantly put your foot in your mouth and once the jack is out of the box, that’s it? All you need to do is stop and pause and ask this one little question: how would I feel if someone said this to me?
Most of the time, what is missing for you is empathy. Thinking about other people’s feelings and thoughts requires empathy. Without this, you won’t stop and pause and think and ask this little question.
For you, naming the elephant isn’t hard but it’s the way in which you go about it that requires tailoring. I get that you are staying true to who you are and your values. I get that you’re just being yourself and you don’t want to change yourself or anyone else around you.
It’s about meeting people in the middle. You have a good understanding of yourself. That’s great. Now you need to have a good understanding of others. Because we live in a world full of people, of relationships and of community.
In order to understand others we have to accept that other people are different to us. We are not the model of a human being. There isn’t just one model. There are many models. Hence why inclusion and diversity is so important right now, because we are so busy telling everyone that’s not like us to change?
Well that’s the way of the old anyway.
The new way is to recognise that we are all different and that’s ok.
How do we communicate and connect without making either party wrong? How do we name the elephant in the room without offending anyone?
How do we stay true to ourselves and our values?
You have to name the thing that is in your way of naming the elephant in the room. That’s it.
So what’s in your way? Name it. Call it out. Say it upfront. All of it. All that is there for you.
This is how I feel, I’ve thought about it and I get that what I’m about to say might be met with x y z but I’m going to say it anyway because this is how I feel.
I’ve considered how this might land for you... but it’s important for me to express how I’m feeling so here goes
I don’t normally speak up or stand up for myself but I’ve recognised it doesn’t work for me to be this way so x y z
The other great framework I use is FBI, feeling behaviour and impact.
This is how I feel:
Because of your behaviour:
This is the impact of your behaviour:
When you behave like x, this is the impact, and this is how I feel.
It doesn’t matter which order, but each element is required.
It’s all about communication. Relationships and communication go hand in hand. If you haven’t been expressing how you truly feel, it’s time to do it.
Do you want to know why? Because our days on this planet are numbered. We’re here for such a short time. Why waste your moments? Start being true to yourself and your values.
Watch what arises. There’s only possibilities and opportunities!
Hi my name is Angela. I have loved writing since I was able to hold a pencil in my hand. I soon learnt I had a gift of connecting with my ancestors through writing before my 30th birthday.