Say What You Need to Say

I’m a firm believer that there are things that need to be said.  Especially if you have a strong reaction about something.

You could spend years and years bottling up a hurt or an offense that was really just a misunderstanding, but you didn’t say anything, so you don’t know.

And, believe me, I know that it’s not always easy to say what you need to say.  Nor is it always a good idea to just go running your mouth about everything.  But if your gut is screaming at you that something doesn’t feel right, and you ignore it – you’re just asking for trouble down the road.

A few months ago I came across a gig for a newly formed company.  The founder had some serious chops – and she was looking for a go-to wordpress person.  Sounded like a dream.

We chatted, it seemed like a good fit, and we agreed to move forward.

Then she asked if she could use some of my work in the company portfolio.  And that made me just feel ick.  But I didn’t say a word.

Later she asked me to help her finish up the company site – and I said sure.  But I didn’t want to because I was still feeling ick about the previous request.  But I still didn’t say a word.

In the end, we parted ways.  Because I was still not cool with her request, and she was annoyed with me because I didn’t do what I said I would do.

And now that I’m removed from the situation, I’m fairly certain that she didn’t mean for me to be offended by her request.  And if we’d just talked it out, things might have turned out differently.  But because I didn’t say anything, I’ll never know.

Please tell me I’m not the only one who does this kind of stuff…

15 Responses to Say What You Need to Say

  1. I am always amazed at my fear of not saying what is on my mind. I think I have this idea that if I do I will be seen as aggressive or that people won’t like me.

    Almost always when we take the risk and say it, things are so, so good. Still working on this one. You are not alone.

    • Glad to hear I’m not the only one! I don’t think you could come off as aggressive if you tried. And ANYONE who wouldn’t like you is just plain dumb.

  2. You’re not alone by a long shot. ; )

    Speaking our truth can feel very uncomfortable…we’re not sure how the other person will respond, we don’t like conflict, we want to please others, etc…and so we mistakenly think that it will be less uncomfortable to simply suck it up and keep quiet.

    The reality is…when we recognize that something we’re doing or not doing, saying or not saying, is out of alignment with who we are…if we don’t act on that awareness the situation will get more uncomfortable (not less) until the discomfort of living with it outweighs the discomfort of speaking up.

    Often, the reality of speaking our truth is completely opposite of what we fear. It’s often much more well received than we anticipated, and regardless of the other person’s reaction…it’s empowering and uplifting to stand up for yourself. You’ll have more respect for yourself and more confidence in yourself and your ability to live true to who you are.

    xo
    L

    • You are soooo right. Uncomfortable is an understatement. Next time, I’ll just be minimally uncomfortable and just say it, because I’d rather someone dislike me because they disagree with me, than because they think I’m irresponsible…

  3. You are totally not alone. I’ve certainly done what you’ve done a bunch of times. I’ve learned to forgive myself for it. Fear can feel powerful. I’ve feared losing a friend, or a client, or being seen in an unpleasant light.

    Like you said, the longer you wait, the more uncomfortable it gets. My theory is that we are programmed to not say things at a very young age when our truth was reacted to by the adults around us. I know I was raised with the “don’t rock the boat” mantra. It was difficult to choose between my own happiness and the happiness (or perceived happiness) of others.

    In truth, it’s all the same thing. I know that I’d rather hear the truth (kindly delivered) from someone else than have them say nothing and most people feel the same way. Even if they don’t, it’s best for all to speak your Truth (at least your Truth in this moment).

    Thanks for the reminder of my own growth in this area and what challenges are ahead- to keep speaking my Truth as kindly as I am able.

    peace,
    Rita

    • Forgive myself – that’s exactly what I know I need to do. And you are right, the truth is the truth. And if it’s delivered with kindness, it’s they’re problem if they are offended by it.

  4. I 5th the “you are not alone” here. And I have a non-biz example where I’m so glad I did say something, otherwise I would have missed out on a soul-satisfying moment. My last relationship was pretty shitty, and I didn’t realize how shitty until I was out of it. Now I’m dating a man who is beyond anything I could have dreamed up in my wildest fantasies. Today, I wanted to send an “I love you” text…and found myself feeling like “I say that too much”…then I decided there’s no such thing as too much.

    When I told him this, he sent me the MOST beautiful list of what “love is” between us. I’m talking, tears streaming by the time I was done reading it. So, again-you are not alone, AND you are right. When you don’t say what you need to say you can miss out on things, misinterpret things…and you’ll be left not knowing, when you could just speak up and always know where you stand. Great post, Amanda! xo

    • Ooh, Liz – that’s some good shizzy right there. You are so right about misinterpreting things. I’ve been in the place where I didn’t say what I needed to say, and I was left wondering for YEARS about the situation. That just plain sucks.

      xo

  5. Thanks for this post Amanda. I have been feeling really icky about not saying what is on my mind with a couple of people in my life. Although it is extremely uncomfortable, I know I will feel better just being honest.

    So, yes, you are not alone! We all hold things back to not hurt others feelings but I think in the end we end up hurting ourselves more.

    Let’s all make a vow to say what is on our minds.

    xo
    Kimberly

    • Agreed. Vow made. The icky feeling does suck – but honestly, if they can’t take it – they shouldn’t be in our lives anyway, right?!

  6. Yeah, totally agree. Just say it and then do it!! It might be uncomfortable at first, but… “life goes on”
    Jill

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