As noted with ¿Truths? Part 1, I am choosing to offer these thoughts simply to encourage growth. I submit them simply for self-study as an example of one person’s searching — such self-study is a very powerful way to come to know yourself. The list of these truths is long, and I will submit it over a number of blogs, 25-30 brief statements per posting.
As previously noted, a comment on language: I am not an advocate of scientific materialism, the philosophic ontology that only science can address truth, and that energy-matter is the only domain of experience in the universe. I value scientific methodology highly, but the overall terminology of scientific materialism has many hidden presuppositions. As much as possible, I will identify them in these posts.
(162 — Continuing from previous) Why bother telling others how I feel?
(163) Telling others how I feel, however, does not lead to change, especially it does not lead to change in others.
It is not meant to!! The only time it really worked this way was as a new-born infant: I cried, I got what I wanted. But all this was soon to change.
(164) I live in a community, an environment of other people. When we are authentic and complete with each other, I am most at peace.
(165) I am dependent on others for many of my needs. This is neither good nor bad, simply part of being human—I am designed for interaction.
(166) In seeking to get my needs met from others, I can either:
- make hints and expect that they will guess my needs (wherein I am often disappointed and angry—my outcome), or
- ask for assistance.
(167) Telling how I feel, and expecting change, is not a form of asking. “Asking” means that the answer “no” is acceptable.
(168) I may not like “no”—the other is free to respond, and I am free to ask another!
(169) Basically, I can tell someone else only two things:
- who I am (what is my experience), and
- how I think they should be.
(170) Both get me into trouble.
- When I tell others how they should be, they generally don’t like it.
- When I tell others who I am, they sometimes tell me how I should be.
(171) I need a way out of this process. For me, that way is a combination of love (compassion) and play (humor and paradox).
(172) I am very committed to you getting your desired outcome in life. I am not committed to my getting your desired outcome for you! Sometimes I choose to do so.
I am very committed to working with you, to exploring with you — when you ask for assistance.
I am not responsible/accountable for you!
(173) Why do I really care what other people think?
In general, when I take a stand, any stand, 25% of people will like it, 25% will not like it, and 50% won’t care.
(174) In each group, however, there will be those who will tell me who I should be, and those who will tell me their own experience.
I would rather have people tell me who they are, even if they disagree with me, than for them to tell me who I should be.
(175) I can also only really ask two things from you:
- for some form of behavior change (to which you can answer ‘yes’ or ‘no’), or
- for information (to which you usually cannot answer ‘yes’ or ‘no’).
(176) Indirect communication is characterized by confusion to these two.
(177) I only am able to hear you when I am moving towards you. “Moving towards” means being interested, excited, physically moving towards, anything such that my interest in focused on you.
I want to hear and be heard—what do I need to do? If I am not willing to hear you, why should you listen to me?
(178) What is the difference between feedback and criticism?
For me, when I tell you who I am, I am giving feedback; when I tell you who you should be, I am criticizing.
Unfortunately though, you will hear what I say through your filters, not mine.
(179) Feedback describes my experience, often in relating to the behaviors you have done.
It is not a request for change; it is data so as to be in authentic relationship.
(180) Criticism describes the difficulty I have with you, and usually ignores my contribution to this difficulty.
It is a request for change, always, and often in a sneaky hidden fashion.
(181) I can only do two things with others:
- I can give them a gift of my time or my energy. A gift has no price tag, absolutely none, not even a thank you! Yet I gain merit (personal valuation) from gifts (part of the paradox of life)!
- I can do something for which I expect reciprocity (a transaction for payment!). I do not gain merit from these transactions. I resent when I don’t get paid!
(182) Keeping these two actions separate is absolutely essential!
(183) I have considerable language difficulty in my relationship with others.
To like (love) someone is to be excited by their presence—this has more to do with me that it has to do with you!
To love someone is to “will to extend oneself for their spiritual growth,” to “call them to their own unique power”—this has more to do with my own growth as a human being, my relationship with the universe, than with you.
Interpersonal relationship with another person has most to do with trust, only partially to do with liking and love—I trust you when you keep your commitments and/or when your actions are consistent with expectations.
(184) To trust is to have confidence in the reliability, the predictability, of an occurrence in the future.
It is usually, but not necessarily, a positive hopefulness. If you are repeatedly dishonest, I likely will trust you to be dishonest in the future!
Not usually the effective basis of relationship though!
(185) The distinction between “needs” and “wants” is frequently important in relationship.
Needs reflect that which would affect my survival as a living being. I need oxygen. I need water. I need food. I need shelter.
Wants reflect that about which I have some choice; I can survive without my wants being met, albeit with sadness or pain. I want successful relationships in my life. I want a comfortable home.
(186) Depending on my maturity, many needs and wants overlap or are fuzzy.
If I say to someone, “I need you,” I really am saying I want you in my life, I want the feelings that I experience in your presence.
I can survive without this, and it might be painful to me.
(187) You and I are similar. I feel comfortable with what is familiar! I relax and have fun! I “like” you. We are “acquaintances.”
Then the differences start to emerge.
(188) I am a sexual being. I get “turned on” by certain experiences, many of which I am not consciously aware. When I am “turned on,” my sensations are wonderful; my emotions are powerful; my thinking is very unclear, very foggy.
You and I are similar. You do things that remind me of my sexuality. Thus, “romantic love”—a sexual fog!
Then the differences start to emerge.
(189) You and I are different.
Authentic interpersonal relationship necessitates shared honesty, and the coming to terms with these differences that exist between us. Conflict occurs when we confront these differences—anger, or a precursor of anger, is the emotional impact of this conflict.
To be continued — we are about half way through the list.
Here is the image that Phil added. I am not sure how to add it to the comment: