There is a time to be open and there is a time to be less open.
It’s important to choose wisely.
Being open with people can be a great way to create understanding and build a connection. But it should also be appropriate to the situation. The openness required to create understanding with a romantic partner and a manager are very different.
Plus, the level of openness is also affected by the boundaries in place by others and also ourselves.
If a client asks how you’re weekend was the boundaries you have in place will ensure the openness is fairly restrictive. But if a friend asked you”re more likely to go into signififcnatly greater detail and divulge information that you may not share with anyone else.
These thoughts about openness and boundaries are nothing new or revolutionary but I do think it’s interesting to think about. It gets even more interesting when you observe the way openness decreases and increases as relationships change. Perhaps as a colleague becomes a manager or a friend becomes a romantic partner.
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.
If someone asked you why you didn’t achive a particular goal it’s likely that not having the opportunitiy would be one of your reasons.
When you’re far from where you want to be it can be difficult to realise that you are capable of making things happen. And it’s not that you’re in control of everything but more that you don’t have to rely on external things all the time.
You can create your own opportunities.
I think that statement has been true for a long time but with Instagram, Youtube, Podcasts and really just the internet in general, that has chnaged.
The person that wanted to be a talk show host can gather a few friends and put something together for YouTube or the person who wants to be a stylist can share images of their work on Instagram.
But opportunities can be created offline too in your everyday life. They might not be so obvious but they’re there. Often it is just a case of being open enough.
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.
That thing that you’re not interested in, that you don’t think is for you, it might be one day.
It takes time for the mind to open up to things, especially when they’re different or new.
This could apply to the music you listen to, shows you watch or even the food that you eat.
One day you’re telling everyone that you don’t do comedy, you don’t find it funny and you much prefer a drama.
Then years later you’re sat at home watching the office (US), snorting with laughter thankful that you changed your mind about the kind of shows you watch.
The thing with your taste changing over time is that it’s part of your development. You don’t need to force yourself to be a certain way right now just because it’s something on the path you’re heading down.
Be patient, remain open and allow the changes to happen naturally.
Sometimes it takes accidental escapism to remind you of the kind of person you desire to be.
Catch yourself in the moment and ask yourself questions like ‘Am I being myself?’ or ‘Is this truly where I want to be?’ And then answer them openly and vulnerably.
You might find that you’re quite content with the life you’ve created but perhaps you’re yearning for more. Many people believe that dreams are something that we have to grow out or let go of, that they aren’t to be actualized. But what if they are.
Perhaps that’s the reason for your lack of contentment in life.
All you have to do is figure out what you want and then go for it with full gusto.
Some are scared to ask for feedback whilst others are afraid to give it.
You don’t want to offend anyone or maybe if they’re more experienced than you, you don’t think you have the authority.
But I’ve learnt that it’s good to ask for feedback. In fact, I’m trying to do more of it in all aspects of my life. From colleagues, my manager, family, friends and even from you.
It’s not about looking for praise or a harsh critique but instead about opening yourself up to the perspective of the observer or receiver because you don’t see things the way they do.
For example, at work you may think that you’re doing your job well because you haven’t been given a warning or been told you’re under-performing. However, perhaps your manager has noticed you could do x, y or z differently but hasn’t said anything because you aren’t bad at what you do.
It’s about being open to seeing that there is room for improvement.
And so I wanted to ask, if you had to make a remark about this blog, what would you say?
Leave a comment or drop me an email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Whether you’re stressed, organised or relaxed as you go through life, unexpected circumstances will arise.
It isn’t necessarily anything good or bad but rather something you haven’t planned for, something that you did not anticipate.
Often these things knock us for 6 and we find ourselves stuck or setback. I think that comes from the fact that we aren’t open to the motion of life. We get so caught in wanting things to be a certain way that forget that there’s an infinite number of awesome outcomes that we could be willing to explore.
So next time, instead of pushing back or getting frustrated by unexpected circumstances, remain open to them and maybe even try embracing them.
Is more useful than a closed one.
A closed mind is a one track mind, a mind with tunnel vision a mind likely to miss things worth noticing.
One thing worth noticing is that not everyone sees things the way that you do and no amount of encouraging, influencing and arguing will change that.
It’s actually okay to think differently and not agree after all why should 2 people with different sets of genetics and life experiences be expected to think the same.
I think a mistake often made about being open minded is that you to agree with the other person. In reality it’s merely acknowledgment that it’s okay for people to not see things the same way that you do.
It’s not always black and white or a case of right and wrong.