Nobody likes having hard conversations but we all have to have them.
For me, this was put to the test with my ex. He and I knew we couldn’t be together but we very much wanted to remain friends and stay in one another’s lives.
Every limit I had was tested through this series of conversations with him to move through this pain so we could carry our relationship into its next stage.
It took every ounce of strength I had to treat him kindly and compassionately while standing in my truth about how the marriage ended.
Sometimes, it is easier to walk away rather than go through more pain – but that never gets us closer to living our truth.
It was worth the effort. Today, we’re great friends and consider each other family. For some, it doesn’t go as well.
I want to share 5 steps to help you with any kind of difficult conversation you might need to have:
Take A Beat. This is about grounding yourself in the here and now. Doing this before you start any important conversation will improve the end result. Start by taking 3 or 4 deep breaths, inhaling through the nose, exhaling through the mouth. Your mind stops racing, your body unclenches, you take your emotions down a few notches. You become aware of the present moment. This sets you up for success.
Show Grace. This is about how the other person perceives you showing up for this discussion. It’s about opening up. You want to approach this from a place of curiosity about the other person’s point of view. Be loving with your words and kind with your actions. Even if you don’t feel like it – that’s grace. It’s about the energy you bring and they will feel it as soon as they enter the room, pick up the phone or get on that video chat. It doesn’t matter what you say, the energy that you bring to the interaction will tell them the truth every time. So get into that heart space first. They will want to soften toward you in return.
Let Go. This requires you to have a little faith and trust. Trust that you don’t have to control this conversation. Trust that you can release any agendas you might have and have faith that the highest good for all will be done. Trust that your emotions are transient and will fall away if you sit with them and continue to listen with an open heart.
Show Up. Look into their eyes as they speak. Feel their heart as they speak their feelings to you. Sense the energy they are giving off. Feel into the deeper meaning, into what is not being said. If you are doing this you won’t get stuck on what they said two minutes ago. Deeply feel what they are saying.
Speak Your Truth. Stand in your integrity. That means your thoughts, belief and words match your actions. And there is a way to do that, no matter how hurt you may be or justified in retaliation you may feel. Do it lovingly. Kindly. With compassion. Take another breath to re-ground yourself if you need to. Drop all the stories around this and just speak from your heart.
These hard conversations get easier with practice. Eventually, it becomes second nature. There will always be convos you just don’t want to have no matter how easy it becomes.
If we can detach from the stories we create around each situation we are in, we can take a lot of the charge out of the hard conversations.
How you approach each one sets the tone for it – energetically, the other person will respond with openness or defensiveness.
You have great control over how that goes.
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