Letting things pile up

Little problems can suddenly become big problems.

It is so important to address things in the moment instead of brushing them off, waiting or saying nothing.

When you do this you’ll find that days, weeks or even months later you’re bringing stuff up that were (according to the other person) not an issue when they happened. And this can then make you seem disingenuous because you pretended that everything was okay instead of raising the issue in the moment.

I think it’s important to be clear about what you do and don’t accept. And then practice voicing that to the people around you so that they are aware of what you’re not okay with.

That way, you never have to let things pile up because that person is already aware. Sometimes we tell ourselves that by saying nothing we are avoiding confrontation or protecting the other persons feelings from getting hurt. However, more often than not we just end up causing ourselves more issues.

Saying yes to what you want

The idea of saying yes to what you want is pretty simple yet somehow we often end up doing the opposite.

We end up saying yes to things that we don’t want.

We have this idea in our mind of what we want, what we’ll say yes to and what we’re willing to accept. Then, when the moment arises where we have the opportunity to show up truthfully, we crumble.

We say yes instead of no and we make allowances or excuses for other people. It’s like we intentionally draw the short straw. It could be about people pleasing, a fear of hurting other peoples feelings or maybe you’re just scared to say no.

What ever the reason, you’re the one that then ends up committing to something that doesn’t even align with what you really want.

And when this happens, it shows. You give less effort, show less enthusiasm and even if you don’t say it, you end up giving off a sort of ‘I don’t want to do this vibe’.

Essentially you just make things harder for yourself and you end up less happy than you could have been.

Using your voice and speaking your mind

And sometimes you realise that you’ve changed. Maybe few years ago or even just last year you’d have said nothing, said it was fine and pushed how you felt aside. You may have been upset, hurt or just frustrated but you were too afraid to show it for fear of your feelings being invalidated.

But now you’re different, you’re not waiting for someone else and you’re not relying on validation. It probably feels empowering because after all this time you’re finally using your voice and speaking your mind.

For everyone else in your life, this may come as a shock because they’re so used to you hiding away and being okay with everything. The shock of others can be enough for some to revert to their old ways, especially if there is a fear of losing people. However, speaking your mind is important, you don’t need to be in a constant state of ‘good’, ‘fine’, ‘not too bad’ or ‘alright’.

Maybe you’re not alright and of course you’ll feel better later but why not honour how you feel in the moment and express it.

If you have to ask…

…you probably already know the answer.

Sometimes when you ask questions, you’re not looking for an answer, you’re looking for confirmation on what you’ve already decided or you want someone to tell you what you want to hear. This is why you end up frustrated with how the person responds, you didn’t get the answer that you wanted.

For the person on the other end they’re simply being honest. As much as you may favour a particular response, there’s not much point in asking a question if you’ll only be satisfied when things go your way.

You have to learn to ask the question and accept that things could go either way. You can begin implementing this by learning to give people the space to be open without judgement and then placing honesty above things going your way.

Say it now

If something is bothering you, don’t ignore it. Say it now.

Of course there may be times when you need to process and check in with yourself to ensure you’re not making a mountain out of a molehill but that won’t always be necessary.

Often, the reason we ignore things and don’t speak up in the moment is because we don’t want to rock the boat, we’re afraid of what the outcome will be, we’re worried about coming across as confrontational and sometimes we fear we’ll be dismissed.

It sometimes feels easier to say nothing and push the feeling aside. But then time goes by and that feeling grows and often ends up bothering you more than it did initially.

Putting things off also tends to cause anxiety and tension in your body as you’re quite literally holding onto you’re words.

And when you finally do decide to say something you’re reaction is totally out of proportion.

There’s not much use in putting it off, you might as well just say it now and get it over with.

On learning to voice your needs

I just googled not being able to voice your needs and there were about 1,220,000,000 results.

Being able to voice your needs is an important part of life. If you can’t say what you need, you probably won’t get it.

If you’ve ever been that person you might have been lucky enough to find someone that gets you. Not in any romantic sense but just someone that understands you even when you’re not able to find the words. That kind of person comes into your life through you being open and vulnerable enough to voice your needs.

It could be as simple as letting someone know that you need space, at first the person might be surprised or not take it well. But over time a good friend or someone that cares about you will understand that at certain times you need to be alone. And it won’t become an issue, they won’t try and make you feel bad or tell you that you have to have to talk now. They will listen and respect your needs.

On the flipside, people that aren’t able to voice their needs might end up falling into feeling misunderstood or uncared for and then carrying that feeling around them everywhere they go. But more often than not, that feeling isn’t true at all. It only feels true because you’re not saying what you need.

How do you feel?

How often do you honestly say how you feel when you don’t feel particularly good?

It’s fairly easy to talk about how happy you are, how much you’re looking forward to something or how great you feel. But when it comes to saying I feel low, I feel sad or I’m not feeling my best, most of us are much less willing to be open.

Instead you’ll find yourself saying things like ‘I’m fine’ even though you don’t mean it at all. Feeling sad or feeling low isn’t a bad thing, it isn’t something that you have to hide.

And sometimes all you need to feel better is to simply talk about why you don’t feel so great.

Easy conversations

It can be difficult to have conversations about things that feel uncomfortable. You might find it so difficult that you avoid it altogether and shut down whenever anyone tries to bring it up with you.

That might seem like the best option because why would anyone choose to feel uncomfortable.

However, when you avoid something it doesn’t go away and you don’t allow yourself room to grow.

So instead of avoiding a difficult conversation or holding back when you speak, try something different.

Be open, honest and know that the initial uncomfortable feeling will subside.

It’ll take a bit of practice but eventually you’ll get to a place where the difficult conversation is actually pretty easy.

Saying what you mean

There’s no need to skirt around the issue.

Being clear with your words might seem like a simple thing to do. Yet if you reflect on conversations you’ve had and the things you’ve said recently you might find times when you haven’t been so clear.

It might have been because you weren’t really thinking in the moment but upon reflection you can see that you should have chose your words more carefully.

However, it could also be that the words you chose in the moment weren’t totally honest. Maybe you were scared to say how you really feel.

Either way what ends up happening is you’re not happy with the response you get from the person you were talking to. It’s not because you didn’t agree with them but instead because their response wasn’t addressing what you really had to say.

Next time try being a little clearer and say what you really mean.

Waiting for a cue

Sometimes when there’s something you want to say the easiest way to bring it up is to wait for a ‘cue’.

My dictionary defines a cue as ‘An action or event that is a signal for somebody to do something’.

In this case the thing to do is bring up a topic that is difficult to speak about or difficult to for people to listen.

However, the problem with waiting for a cue is that sometimes other people will not consider your approach genuine. But furthermore, it stirs up the question of why you’re unable to bring the topic up on your own.

Why do you have to wait for a cue?

Perhaps because you’re not ready to admit how much the topic matters or maybe you just don’t dont have the confidence yet.

It might not be easy the first time but get used to talking about what matters, you don’t need to wait for a cue.