E X P R E S S Y O U R S E L F. For the past 18 months I've struggled to express myself fully when I've been hurt or upset by someone or been in love with somebody. It was if my emotions were so overwhelming, that they froze when they reached my throat. I was allowing certain people to treat me poorly. My boundaries were weak and I spent a lot of time depressed and thinking I wasn't good enough - they'd treat me better otherwise, right?
I tried to rationalise and see the best in people. I wanted to keep the harmony and not have any drama so I would justify their actions - that they must be hurting to hurt me. Then I realised this all came down to one issue - fear of rejection. I was fearful of being rejected by those people, losing their friendship, not being good enough for them to want to continue in my life.
This gave me a wake-up call. My self-esteem was on the floor. I'd lost respect for myself. Where did those emotions come from? What first made me feel unworthy? How true were those thoughts?
I began to explore the roots of the issues and then began to establish boundaries, which taught people how to treat me and what behaviour or words were acceptable to me. I started respecting myself my feelings and found my voice to express my self.
And that mirror called life, reflected back more respect. Rather than losing relationships, I strengthened them with honest and authentic communication.
Learning to communicate my tender and awkward feelings in a calm, gentle but strong manner has been a challenge but also a great lesson.