I talked about it yesterday during Couple Talk Tuesday: we miss out on so much interaction in this life and in our relationships when we choose to put on a brave face and not say what’s actually happening for us.
Sure, it’s not as sexy to say what’s actually happening to our friends and our community on Facebook, but how much deeper would our experiences be if we connected with people around us on an authentic (rather than surface) level?
Here’s your homework (yes, I am a Relationship Coach, but I also secretly always wanted to be a teacher!):
Do one, do em’ all – your choice:
1. Make a confession on social media – out yourself. Post a string if selfies that led to the one you finally landed on that you liked, share your big fail of the day and tell us what you learned, embarrass yourself.
Use the hashtag #nakedtruth
If you need inspiration, check out Parrish Wilson; she writes Mama Truths and bravely flings it all out to share with the knowledge that we all just need someone else to do it to give us permission.
2. Have a new sort of conversation with someone you trust about what’s happening for you – admit that things are hard, own up to the struggle you’ve been hiding, be okay with saying something sucks and don’t sugar coat it or expect it to be fixed.
3. Share something (as above) that feels scary with a stranger.
Strangers want to be a part of our experience: I was at a grocery store last week and found that my debit card wouldn’t work – I had just run to the store, so had no other way to pay with me and unbeknownst to me, a chargeback had gone through my account, wreaking all sorts of havoc and leaving me overdrawn – when the card wouldn’t work twice, the woman in line behind me generously offered to pay for my groceries! I was completely dumbfounded, but allowed her to see me in my needy, shame-filled (what is it with money that does this to us??) moment. I left the store in grateful tears, with my bag of groceries, and have been looking for a way to pay it forward ever since.
4. Invite someone else to get naked with you – notice when you see someone struggling; you don’t have to ignore it or pretend everything is fine. If you arrive at your friends’ house for a BBQ and can feel tension in the room, ask about it! It’s as easy as saying, “It looks like you’re really struggling. How can I support you?” If you recognize someone having a similar experience to one you’ve had (struggling with parenting, perhaps?), reach out and tell them it’s okay to not like it.
The last step to any and all of these is to let me know, in the comments below, what you discovered, what you noticed, and how weird/wonderful/awesome/terrifying it was to get naked.
Go to it!