Today my cousin and I were talking about our family and how certain miscommunications have caused problems. Our conversation caused me to think about my personal life and how miscommunication has affected me. With me it's not so much saying things the wrong way, or leaving out facts. I miscommunicate by omission. There have been hundreds of times I didn't say what I wanted to say or needed to say, and I have just as many excuses why I didn't. That's exactly what they are, excuses. The real reason has amounted to one thing. FEAR.
Mind you, I don't have this problem with people in general, just with people who mean a lot to me.The responses I imagined would be the result of my speaking out to my loved ones were very scary for me. Maybe the person would be angry or hurt. Maybe they wouldn't love me anymore. Maybe they would leave me. Maybe they would think less of me, think I was weak or silly. I thought I'd be giving them power to hurt me if I expressed my feelings .........made myself vulnerable. I thought I'd be crushed by any negative response to my speaking up.
I have been dead wrong in my thinking.
I have taken feelings from my childhood and carried them over to my adult life - and they have served me poorly. Fear paralyzes. You can't move, concentrate or think clearly when you're afraid. Fear can literally kill you if you live with it long enough. It causes stress which in turn causes various health problems. It causes wrong thinking which stunts personal growth. Sometimes fear immobilizes us and we can't "run" when we need to.
I'm learning to step out of fear. It's still a little scary, but it's liberating at the same time. I tell myself in order to live in peace and be true to yourself you have to do this. It also helpful for me to first examine my motives, then pray and ask God to speak through me......help me find the right words to say what I have to say in love. So far, so good.