If there were no repercussions, what would you say?
Interesting question, right? I mean, imagine if there were no repercussions for saying what you felt? No yelling, no screaming, no hurt feelings no matter what you shared.
What would it be like to speak with an open heart, knowing that whatever you said would be welcome and even, holy goodness, encouraged?
Sounds like a heavenly communication dream to me and one I absolutely, positively, NEVER believed could be a reality.
Which is why, for years, I never told the people closest to me how I felt. Growing up in an environment where yelling, door-slamming, then total denial that anything unsavory had just happened was the norm, I quickly decided the best way to avoid conflict in my adult life was to stay quiet and KEEP THE PEACE. (I know this may appear implausible given my big mouth and penchant for curse words.)
And keep the peace I did.
In fact, my ex-husband and I only fought twice in our 8 years together. Anytime he’d get upset I’d try to diffuse it by saying whatever would make him happy and if I were upset I tamped it down with a quick, “This is not a big deal. Get over it.” (I should mentioned I also only cried twice during our years together. At the time I called it strong. I’ve since swapped that for shut down.)
The problem with keeping the peace is we link it to silencing our truth. (Tweet this!)
If we just keep quiet, no one will fight.
If we don’t say anything, no one will get hurt.
If we just let it go, everyone will be happy.
Everyone except you, that is.
In fact, the quickest way to feel stuck, trapped and disconnected from your life is to continually avoid conflict, to always try to smooth things over, to do the “adult thing”, to hold your tongue when the truth is eating you alive.
And yet if we’re used to being the peacekeepers, the idea of letting our feelings fall from our face in front of another person is terrifying.
So how can we start to speak our truth without any repercussions?
WRITE IT OUT.
When I was desperately trying to keep life harmonious and scared sh*tless to speak up, writing allowed feelings to fall from my hand that I just couldn’t yet let fall from my mouth.
It created a safe place to explore conflict without fear of judgment, hurting another’s feelings or feeling compelled to keep the peace.
In fact true peace came by writing it all out. The more I let myself share without restraint the more peaceful I felt.
This week, rather than avoid conflict, let yourself face it on the page. Write. Scribble. Draw. See what comes out that’s been sidelined as “not a big deal” and really needs to be expressed. See what it feels like to let it out and if an internal sense of peace begins to percolate.
No need to share your feelings with others humans yet. That’ll come later. For now, simply start with a forgiving blank page.
All my love,
P.S. Not sure where to begin and need help getting pen to paper? I’ve got you covered. Join me for my free class Just F*cking Journal. Class starts Monday, April 20th and I’d be over the moon to have you.
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