I wait and watch for inspiration for these messages to you, and I found it this month in a song: John Mayer’s “Say What You Need to Say”
“Even if your hands are shaking
And your faith is broken
Even if your eyes are closing
Say it with your heart wide open
Say what you need to say.”
So much of my day is spent helping people figure this out. “Finding your voice” is a wonderful benefit of therapy, as you learn here that you have both a RIGHT to ask for what you want and the WAY to state your needs respectfully.
Some basic tips when you are “saying what you need to say:”
1. Use “I Need” instead of “you should.”
It is not OK for you to tell other people how to live their lives. “Saying what you need to say” is NOT a license to judge, criticize or otherwise counsel others!
It IS OK to require them to treat you with respect, but you must first ask respectfully. This means not yelling your message at them. Not using sarcasm or anger. It means speaking up firmly and courteously about what you will or will not tolerate.
2. Speak honestly, clearly and directly—don’t hint, manipulate or guilt-trip others.
We get in trouble when we expect others to “just know” or read our minds. This is a common pitfall when dealing with the opposite sex. Women, most guys don’t get all the hints and signals that your girlfriends do. It’s not a sign of any lack of love. “Say what you need to say” without playing games.
3, After you say what you need to say, take responsibility for what comes next.
You have choices here. Maybe you’ll get what you’ve asked for, maybe you won’t. The next step is to decide what is required in order for you to stay in the relationship or on the job. Do you need to require marital counseling? Do you need a different job where you are respected? Do you need a time apart? Do you need to hire help to get things accomplished which are being neglected?
Then, do what you need to do.
Say what you need to say.
And let me know if I can help in that process.