I’ve heard that phrase many times, usually in the context of someone telling their beliefs based on their lived experience. Sometimes it is rephrased as ‘speaking truth to power.’
That doesn’t mean that the facts are ignored. First, their lived experience is a fact. Also, the person may call upon other sources to strengthen the validity of their beliefs.
I reflected on the act of speaking my truth and what that meant to me. These are the conclusions I came to. As usual, towards the end of the Blog, I have what I call the B.O.A.T. moment – ‘Bit Of A Think.”
- I try to say what’s on my mind while being respectful.
- I’m ok to feel the way I do.
- I try to be clear and honest about my desires and wishes.
- I try not to be afraid of saying something that others may disagree with.
That’s quite a mouthful.
Being respectful in a conversation is not to make the focus of my truth personally directed to other people. The old-fashioned “I“ statements are good. I listen for the “you“ word and check if I was slipping into it being too directed. Also, what share of air time was I taking relative to all the listeners?
How I feel is exactly how I should feel; sad, disappointed, angry or guilty. That doesn’t mean I want to stay in that state, but at that moment, it is the exact feeling I should have. Well-meaning friends sometimes try to reassure me with an “oh, you shouldn’t feel that way.” I do feel that way at that moment – yet I may not want to stay in the feeling, and I take their input as a light I should consider heading towards – with thanks.
I think of the long bumper sticker that says, “if you loved me, you’d know,” and add, “if you loved me, you wouldn’t have me guess.” So, I try to be sure of the clarity of what I’m saying. It’s bad enough to get into something I said and intended without getting into an argument about something I didn’t say or mean.
Diversity is one of the buzzwords we now live with, along with having to pivot. Whatever happened to just changing our plans – but that’s another rabbit hole for another day. I try not to speak every opinion or truth I have. There are times in conversations when viewpoints are being offered. I offer mine. I don’t fret about them being different. They often are because of the quirky way I see the world.
I’m curious about your thoughts. What additional railings do you put up that strengthen the four I’ve listed? Are there any times you wished you had spoken up, or not spoken up? Are there family gatherings in which avoiding certain topics is the best plan?
Please share your bit of a think below.
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