2/23/2016: Conversations

Today @jasondoesstuff and I had a tough conversation. It doesn’t happen often, but every once in a while we find ourselves in a bit of a conundrum, a decision that truly feels like a stalemate — one of us wants one thing, one of us wants another, and the resulting conversation unfolds with both of us trying to communicate our perspective as best we can.

These are the types of conversations that are never fun to have in the moment, but I’m ALWAYS grateful that they happen because that’s when we get to dig in and demonstrate our love in the way that we act. I mean, it’s one thing to talk about communicating effectively in practice, but can you actually call upon those lessons when you’re in the game and it matters? Can you really try to HEAR the person you love instead of jumping to defend yourself? Are you willing to speak from a place of generosity not wounded pride? Can you choose your words carefully and share honesty in a way that’s kind?

It’s not easy, but I think it’s in those conversations that every strong relationship is fortified. If you’re able to hang there, keep your cool, and make sure every word is laced with love, then ultimately when you come to a resolution, you’re stronger for it.

This also reminded me of a great podcast episode from @jessclively and @brenebrown that I finished yesterday on boundaries. Woven throughout their conversation, Brené talked again and again about how establishing boundaries is actually a way of showing love and how setting those boundaries or being honest with the people you love will often lead to hard conversations. I couldn’t agree more.

Remember, hard conversations are usually hard because there is TRUTH being spoken. And on the other side of truth and vulnerability is deep, meaningful connection.

So have the hard conversations. Find a way to connect even if it feels uncomfortable or exhausting or risky. Do it carefully, do it with love, and your relationships will be stronger for it.