How many times have you thought to yourself….
Do they really understand where I’m coming from?
Let’s face it, relationships are hard sometimes ….or lots of the time, depending on how well you have learned to fight and make up. This is important whether you work with them or sleep with them and especially important if it’s both categories.
Can Fighting Be Win Win ?
I believe fighting is an important skill. To know how to fight and how to return to the scene of the crime and rekindle the relationship and your dignity; is a skill worth learning.
I call this personal power. Where there is a win win kind of fight.
When a client asks me will he/she really ever understand where I’m coming from. I say yes there is hope. There are 5 things you can do straight away to find out if they understand you.
Perhaps it won’t be ALL the time. And accepting this is crucial. To keep searching for someone who completely gets you every step of the way is to have someone that’s exactly like you. Your clone. We humans usually choose people based on the lessons we need to learn in life and those “chosen ones” are our teachers for as long as we will have them.
However, if he or she once did understand you, and now it seems as if they don’t; they can do it again. You both can have a conversation that connects.
I want to reassure you that it is possible. I see it in my work over and over.
Keep reading for 5 easy ways to check if they really do understand you and if you discover they don’t, what you can do…
How do you know if they get it or not? How can I check?
In my experience, you cannot be sure until you understand exactly what it is they do understand.
Sometimes I hear people I support in conversations say ..”yeah yeah I get it I know what you mean” and then they start to say what’s on their mind.
And sadly, now the original speaker is now listening without being heard.
This happens a lot. We listen, only long enough, to prepare a response.
Who gets hurt when I get mad?
If you decide you are really mad and ignore someone, it will hurt you. Isolation can be stressful. We are humans and we crave social interaction and belonging. It takes energy to stay silent and keep your focus on how hurt you are. It may hurt the other person too, yet it will surely hurt you. I find often the other person has no idea how hurt you are. To have the conversation sooner rather than later will save lots of energy and you have a great chance of not only just making up but really finding genuine joy in this reconnection whether that’s with someone at home or at work.
To simply say I understand is to assume the words the speaker has said are clear and have communicated what is important to them. Until you check it out, all you have are words. When someone gets you the speaker can feel it in their body.
Society loves self-sufficiency, we love to call needs- “neediness” and we often see vulnerability as “weakness.” Take a look at social media for some evidence.
Journaling is a valuable tool to keep you sane.
People, me included, although a lot less since learning about compassion empathy, self-connection and mourning practice, continue to isolate themselves whenever they encounter a challenge in their lives instead of walking towards more connection and community.
One of my teachers, Miki Kashtan has said “In this way, isolation contributes to stress. Stress is not simply a function of what happens and what demands are made of us by life. It is also a function of the capacity we have to engage with, process, digest, make sense of, and integrate what comes at us. The conditions of capitalism and modernity have both increased the stimulation, information, and challenges that we encounter as input and decreased the capacity we have to usefully engage with it. This reduced capacity is the direct result of isolation and intense self-expectations”.
This is why I advocate for journaling and having a regular mourning practice. Moving forward with support and clarity can supply certainty which is what we crave and is empowering.
So what can you do when people don’t get you?
- Perhaps getting understanding will be with some people and not others…checking in with yourself if you are in the right groups of people for this to happen effortlessly?
- Check with the person you are speaking with what they have heard you say so you get a sense of what they have heard may be very different to the message you intended to share.
- Gauge whether the person is interested in understanding you. ..you can simply ask them.
- Let go of the need to explain. …it will be way less exhausting!
- Focus on your common human needs, not the differences.
Remember when you’re the one withholding the comfort of understanding, it can imbue you with a sense of power. And it also creates a sense of separation, which, for some, feels safer than closeness.
The most important ingredients in relationships generally are willingness, compassion and empathy.
I have worked with other people’s communication and my own internal communication for 15 years and I know that it comes down to a willingness to listen, compassion and empathy. If another person wants to hear what you have to say and they are capable of feeling something in their body then converting that feeling to a word to communicate that to you, then you have what I call empathy.
If the speaker is feeling pain and the listener can, just for a brief moment, hear your suffering with all their presence, the speaker can feel huge relief, and you get to be connected to each other.
If we don’t get it often in our current work or intimate relationship, we can recreate it in our minds.
This type of visualisation is where our fabulous minds recreate that special moment in time several times, or each and every morning for the rest of our lives and as we recreate those superhighways in our minds we get to know each and every day that someone got us.
Those visualisations plant the seeds for the possibility that someone else will get us in the future. If we can be reassured by these good feelings of recreating a happy or settling moment our bodies and minds can do what they are always striving to do; to return to homeostasis.
Coming from a place of love helps me feel my feet on the ground.
When I choose to be the change I wish to see, it’s less important to me that everyone else sees me, values me, gets me, and understands my good intentions—because I do. Because I know I am coming from a place of love, kindness, and integrity.
You can find out more about how to retain your personal power and reconnect if there are many misunderstanding between you over in my Facebook group Personal Power in Relationships. Come and join me over there, it’s brand new and I am so excited to be sharing my challenges and experience with you and hope this will be a space filled with mutual learning and sharing of ideas.