If, like a large percentage of the population:
-you’ve ever struggled to speak for what you want and need, AS WELL AS to what you can give and how you can be of service
-if you’re someone who feels like you have a whole network of people you give your everything to, but you feel like you don’t get much or what you’d really like back
-if you feel like there's a lot of constant flux in your circle
-if you’re someone who didn’t naturally come from an abundant family and is still learning how to take the creative process of life by the reins so to speak or
-you had never had a management level role in your working life before starting a business
this will be relevant for you.
For anyone who grew up feeling like they didn’t often get a chance to ask for or to be heard in what they wanted or needed, people in this boat, instead of asking for what they want, often tended to compensate by getting busy loving and treating other people in the way that they themselves wanted to be treated and then hoped the other person will get the download on that that’s how they want to be treated and expect the other party will reciprocate in kind. There’s lots of assumptions made. And, in the absence of the possibility or availability for clear verbal discussion, some learn to instead start making emotional reasoning based assumptions and assessments, that if it feels good, it must be right. And in the absence of any verbal confirmation, that what evidence their brain has gathered to make sense of what's going on with the other is what they have to operate on as the truth.
They can also assume that if they’re giving generously to people in this selfless way, the other party automatically will get that they’re a priority to them and that we want to build something with them or have some form of relationship grow together. And assume that if the other party shows any sign of engagement and excitement back, the other party must feel the same. But that doesn't always ring true to how things really turn out, does it? Sometimes we can get caught up in seeing what we want to see, instead of what's actually really there.
The assuming can also be a way of avoiding any possible fear and unpleasantness of reality that maybe the other person DOESN'T feel the same way, or maybe they do just a little bit, and if love and intimacy is in any way in short demand at that time, accepting what little bit is there can be tempting, over raising the bar and risking losing all of it entirely. I could be here for a week if i tried to get to the bottom of all of our individual investments in such a dynamic. But they can be summed up i think well enough in we'll do anything we can to avoid either fear, pain or death...and rejection feels like all three at once.
How did this come to be? This can be the legacy of many years of maybe not being allowed to ask for what they want and having to almost psychicly work out from withdrawn or non communicative/non available parents (and later maybe partners or friends) what on earth is really going on with them. Hence having had little opportunity to practice. Or, conversely, maybe it was they asking lots of questions about what the other party needed because the other party had a lot of need, but maybe the question (or the love) didn’t much ever come back the other way because of the intensity of the need of the other party (major illness could be one example of such a need.) And they got used to receiving, being ok with just a little bit of what they truly wanted or needed. Maybe they were just never encouraged to feel into and ask for what they want full stop and or to confront and learn to deal with the possibility of rejection as well as potentially being met.
Not to mention that women are still throwing off the last remnants of having had the selfless giving thing conditioned into them from way back when, give give give, nurturing selflessly, be grateful that the man or someone is providing, don't forget to keep give give giving in each of your 3 plus major life roles you're juggling and what everyone else wants comes first. Because we love to bits the people around us, we don't want to mess it up and let everyone down, even if it half kills us trying to meet everyone else's needs and help them be happy. But in the modern day lifestyle, the combination of any of those approaches only gets you so far before you either a) fall down from exhaustion or b) resentment or c) both. But rarely to feeling fully loved, supported and met. No one is an island and at some point somewhere, we've got to learn to become more aware of what our own needs are and then how to ask for support to help us meet them. Especially if you want to be able to help more people on a bigger scale.
Plus, in employed positions, before the inception of a more values based style of leadership that is "the thing" now (but also i would say, innate to the helping industries anyhow), there’s been the expectation for a long time that a lower level role requires being asked to do it now, this way, by this time, without question....and if there is a question, it’s to get more info about getting it done how the company wanted it done. As a follow on to an education system that often asked the same. Non questioning and compliance was an expected, rewarded thing, as was selfless giving to the cause. Under many years work under that dynamic, they might have got to asking the customers and other teams things, but not had the chance, the practice in yet asking, from the self reflection AND the managerial power position, things about what THEY now need, what they now need done, when and how. As well as the new way of being the values based, servant leader asking the right questions to find ways to motivate and inspire their teams to to take action towards a common goal or set of goals.
Ultimately, when you're in the Practitioner/Business Owner or the Leader seat, now you have to be the one asking the questions (and as a colleague once famously said) asking the right kind of questions to get the outcome you and or the other party seek, is key.
Asking the right kind of questions from day 1 also, is key to creating the right kind of long lasting relationships of all kinds. And to creating longevity within your inner circle. Which starts with asking oneself the right kind of questions first, before asking the right set of questions of others and flat out (like I was speaking to, two weeks back) being able to directly communicate and negotiate for what you want and what they do too, from a place of self awareness and groundedness.
When it comes to creating the ideal inner circle, here’s a few questions you can use to up your self awareness and get a bit more discerning about what you really need and who is really the right fit to let into your inner circle of support:
Getting in the habit of asking any of those kind of questions of ourselves a bit more often helps raise the bar on the kinds of connections we create. And before you worry yourself that it will mean many might leave to stand for more of these things (true, some who aren’t in alignment or aren’t willing to meet you half way on it might just opt out), more often than not though, when you actually raise the self love bar and be honest about what you really need, a whole bunch of love and support people have been waiting to give you, while you BE the biggest version of yourself (and while you've been giving so much too) can actually finally meet you and get in. And that starts to create a much more solid foundation on which you can build your dreams and your mutually shared ones at that.
Until next time, have fun, take care.
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.