Is our sensitivity really our strength? Have you noticed how much we avoid being uncomfortable in life? It seems that many of us work very hard to create a life where we are surrounded by people we love and for the most part tend to cocoon ourselves in the bubble of a very cushy comfort zone.
But sure enough a spanner will inevitably be thrown into the works where our perception of ourselves and even the way others perceive us will be questioned. We question things like:
• What do we really excel at?
• What are our challenges?
• Is our life set up so we don’t grow and shift old habits?
• How do we respond when someone challenges us?
How do we handle it when somebody comes into our life and threatens to burst our little bubble of comfort, and confidence? Certain people are unavoidable and they seem to fall into the category of either a new love, their best friend, a newly acquainted brother or sister in law, a disapproving mother in law, or a new boss.
Why are we so affected by this and how do we overcome the rush of emotions and thoughts that threaten to take over our carefully constructed world? Even when we work on our strengths, there will always be a situation that arises and exposes our more sensitive side.
As I discovered recently, avoidance isn’t always the option – and if that’s your current method, it only tends to work for so long before those boundaries need to be put into place.
One of my clients is a very direct communicator. Among other Type A personality traits, that include mind bogglingly efficient time management, she is self-employed as a public speaker and now runs her own company with over 40 employees. She has wonderful boundaries with her colleagues and clients, as they always know where they stand with her.
Over the years that I have known her, she has worked tremendously hard to fine-tune any hiccups with those close to her, and as a result her relationships with her friends and relatives are warm, nurturing and full of love and support.
Very recently she found herself in a situation where she mentioned she ‘accidentally acquired a boyfriend’, and when I questioned her about this, she responded by telling me that she had gotten swept up in the heat of the guys passion, yet when she realised this wasn’t right for her, she had felt it was too difficult to hurt his feelings at the time.
It turns out that she is a very direct communicator when she need to express herself professionally, and even stronger when she needs to asset herself in a difficult situation, but when it comes to expressing her emotional needs at the expense of hurting another, she crumbles at the mere thought.
In fact when I saw her the other week, she had come to see me to work on ways to end a relationship that had barely begun, simply because she couldn’t find the words to express her truth.
During her 1:1 balance session, when we muscle tested to check for the original time that this tendency had first occurred in her life, we found that she had watched her mother sink into the depths of depression when her father had walked out on her after declaring that he no longer loved his wife.
This perception had been programmed into my client’s cellular memory from a very young age and had set the scene for how she viewed the dynamics of a relationship. As a result, she often avoided expressing her true feelings for fear of causing immeasurable pain.
The parts of our personality that are not necessarily strong as steel are often the parts of us that exude a humble sense of humility for others. Despite my client feeling pressured by her friends to simply ‘end it’, for her, that simply wasn’t an option. It was much more important for her to understand how the behaviour started so that she could stop repeating this tendency in each of her personal relationships.
Have you found your strength by probing further into your weakness? As a result, have you discovered that this perceived weakness actually has a history that is essentially a strength?