“Telling someone how you feel is honestly the hardest thing ever.”
Many of us have been shaped by the self-made-man or self-made-woman motif.
There’s a lot of John Wayne swagger in our images of being successful and together.
And yet, if you dig underneath the neatly coiffed outward appearances, all people experience personal and growth challenges.
One downfall is keeping what’s inside to ourselves.
Too often we find out stuff was going on with someone only after they’ve removed themselves from the conversation.
I recently attended a memorial service for a friend of a friend, and the huge temple was packed and overflowing with mourners.
This man was so lovingly regarded by so many, and yet—though people had been somewhat aware of his depression—nobody knew it would go to the depths it did, having him take himself out… unexpectedly, in the twinkling of an eye.
He had a long reputation for being the cheerful and jovial one. Apparently that personae remained in place until the very end.
If we tell our own truth, others often sense the safety to do the same. The rub is for both ourselves and others to be willing to get outside the standard ways of acting and being with each other.
Not like wearing all our insides on our sleeves, and yet putting the masks and guards down as part of our full repertoire can create a safe space of openness.
In many respects, telling others serves our greater good.
Want to realize that you’re just like everyone else? Tell someone what’s going on with you.
Want to find voices more supportive than those in your head? Tell someone what you’d like to achieve.
Want to be sure you achieve what you say? Tell someone and ask them to hold you accountable.
If we only ever simply capitalized on this last action, which flies in the face of our supposed “independence”—choosing to make ourselves accountable—how much more might we live in life when we have someone holding us to our word of how we want to live it?
What can you tell someone today to plug into resources outside of your own?
Here’s a few tips for telling someone something that will move you forward.
Want to see if someone is there for the long run with you? Show them the real you right away.
A wise man once said that, if you want to see if a relationship has stickability, put your worst foot forward.
That doesn’t mean actually try to sabotage anything, but most people are always trying to look their best and show up all “together”. If you can reveal your warts as well as your wonders, you can see what wart-bearing capacity is over there early on.
When you’ve tested the wart-bearing waters—or as another way to do so—share something with someone that you most don’t want anyone to know.
In the world of romantic relationships, it’s a great way to start to really get to know someone beyond the “looking good” phase of initial dating. On each successive date, share the one thing you most don’t want them to know. Ideally, for the game to work, they do the same.
If you start at your deepest “most don’t want them to know” then, on each successive date, you’re working your way up. After a month or so of dating, talk about learning that someone can be with you warts and all.
Sure, it takes trust…but you have to first be the change you want to see, yes?
Ask someone if you can trust them enough to reveal to them your big dream. Will they be supportive? Will they empower you?
Asking is a good first step because you don’t want to throw “pearls before swine”.
Then, tell them.
If you really care enough to have that big dream fulfilled, ask them if you can make promises to them about what you’ll do by when you’ll do it to activate that dream.
Ask them to hold you to account for doing what you say by when you say you’ll do it.
Ask them if you can schedule times to check in with them on your progress.
Ask them to be bold and supportive in pointing out to you when you’re not being who you said you’d be or doing what you said you’d do.
The degree to which you commit to empowering them to hold you to account is the degree to which your dream will be realized.
“Tell the truth, or eventually someone will tell it for you.”
In The Back Forty, we say you have yet to do what you came here to do.
If you’re here to play a yet bigger game – no matter what you’ve accomplished thus far – it will take baring, sharing, daring and caring…to bring out the ALL of you in a NEW way.
We created The Back Forty Re-NEW-ALL Program for just this reason: to have you saying what really matters, and getting over and beyond the challenges that have held you back from realizing it. Those challenges are really your best friend, helping you get there, if you approach them powerfully.
Check out A Back Forty Re-NEW-ALL Program here, to ReNEW the ALL of YOU.