Stay In

The consultant was not happy with me. He’s been working and creating all the systems we need at my new job. I just got there, and I was telling him to do it different.

I’d only just got there. He’d been keeping it together for months. So, when I sent a message relaying the new requirements I’d been given, he had a terse answer.

I had to call him to understand what he meant. When we were actually talking not just typing, the frustration came out. We had to hash it out.

Some things were said. Some things needed to be heard.

And we got there. I told him, “Please understand, I appreciate that you told me how you see this. I have learned, as long as we keep talking, we are still working towards a solution.”

To take a line from Oprah, this is something I know for sure.

My only hope to hang on to rescue is to stay in the conversation.

Hang on like I’m hanging on to a floating plank after a shipwreck.

I know I’m going to need all the help I can get to make it through this storm of life. If I’m in it with other people, we have to keep talking. I don’t’ know what hurts you if I don’t hear you say ‘ouch.’ I won’t know what is important to you if you don’t tell me.

That conversation means I have to say it. And I have to listen for it.

We have to be in it and stay in it.

Because our minds are so very creative, we can come up with a hundred ways to interpret what we hear. We have to let each other know if we’ve getting hot or ice cold on the interpretations.

Also, there has to be room to change course when things change. Lots of blocks can come in that require a new plan. That takes even more discussion and decision.

Me and my consultant had a tense conversation, but we stayed in it and got through. I feel confident that we built trust with one another that will help in future disagreements.

Our working relationship is stronger.

Conversations with family work the same way. It may be uncomfortable to share how things make me feel, but if I want to grow trust I have to stay in the conversation. Anything less is abandoning the people I love.

Pulling a mask over my feelings, stifling my voice means we are not in the game anymore.

I want to be heard. I want to hear you. I’m going to stay.