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The Importance of Being Direct

Being direct may be even more important than being earnest. 


For many people, these times are trying.  Anxiety about finances, the future, the present, even the present in terms of three o'clock this afternoon has many people emotionally tied in anxious knots.  One may be asking: "Will I have my job at the end of the day."  "Will I have my retirement?" "Will I have my home?" "Will there be anything left in the fridge for dinner?" "Will I get my credit card bill and not be able to pay it?"


Things are rough all around.


But they do not have to become even rougher if you can remember this about handling yourself in relationship with your friends and loved ones.


When human beings are anxious, they can decide to internalize their fears and obsess about them.  Fears can behave like "Tribbles" those fictional fluff-ball creatures from the original Star Trek series that breed like rabbits on speed, taking over the ship, getting into everything eventually and causing all vital systems to crash.


A logical fear or anxiety about a potential future event or situation may breed into another fear by displacing itself on top of another situation that holds much less realistic threat.  Or, it may displace onto people you are in relationship with - your friends and family.  Your best friend, your mother, your teenage child, your baby.   Whether or not you want to believe it, you may help this fear displace onto your loved ones and children  by trying to put it someplace else where you feel you can more easily deal with it... someplace where you actually do have more authority, power, and control.


Unfortunately, the moment you displace your fear onto the situation you truly have more control over is also the moment you (paradoxically) LOSE control of yourself and your relationship.  Your fear may drive you to do and say things in relationship that are much more aggressive and destructive than they need to be.


Some people may call your displaced fear and anxiety on your friends, family, and children "abuse" some people may call it being "passive aggressive" but I call it two things and two things only:


1) Not being consciously direct in relationship with others

2) Fear


When people love and care for you, they generally want to do things that show you that love and care.  You want to do the same for people you love and care about.  But when you become afraid that people do not love and care for you, that they perhaps want to take advantage of you or harm you or use you in some way, and you allow this fear and anxiety to "drive the car" of your relationship with them, you can be sure that fear will drive the car right over your loved one, friend or child.


Want to prevent fear from driving the car over those you care about? 


Consciously drive the car by being direct and telling your loved ones when you feel fear about being in relationship with them.  Tell them when you are concerned or anxious about something they have done or said, or not done or said that you felt you needed done or said.  Put your hands on the wheel and steer, and DO NOT give the wheel over to your fear. 


And telling them means having a conversation with them about it.  At does not mean yelling, screaming and accusing them of doing or intending to do the thing you fear.  If you are yelling, screaming and accusing - fear is driving your car.


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