I did an experiment once where I called each of my friends and asked them the same question about me. I was trying to get a sense of how I react to conflict. To my surprise they all said the same things. They said I’m pushy, that I speak over others, and struggle to admit when I’m wrong. I had to wonder, if I’m having the same problems with everyone, about the same thing, is it something that I need to identify at the root? The root being me? Sometimes it’s hard to admit that you’re the problem. You’re the Molly of your friend group or the Tasha of your romantic partnership (I’m an Insecure and Power fan, obviously lol).
For as long as I can remember, I’ve made it a point to defend MY point.
I yearn to be heard.
I think it stems from unresolved Middle Child Syndrome; seeking the attention that I feel I was robbed of. Or maybe it’s my inability to accept other people’s viewpoints without thinking it will discredit mine. Orrrrr maybe I just like to argue.
But why am I more focused on being right than being open-minded?
Why am I quick to respond but slow to understand? The nuances of communication are being shaped in my early adulthood. I was stunned to realize that comprehension was the missing piece in being able to communicate effectively with others. But how could I comprehend if my mind was focused on preparing a rebuttal? In this analysis of myself, I began to look at the relationships—platonic and romantic—I’ve had with others and began to stop and ask myself…Is it me?
I’ve learned a lot about myself in this process and it’s been the most uncomfortable phase of my life. Practicing humility and accountability while allowing room for vulnerability is truly a learned skill.
But one thing remains to be constant—self-reflection has saved me and my relationships with others. It’s imperative in ensuring that I’m putting out what I’d like to receive, speaking how I’d like to be spoken to, and most of all, being loved the way I love.
I’ve seen people lose everything because they didn’t want to face themselves. I’m so grateful I didn’t reach that point before I began self-reflecting. Growth is uncomfortable and self-reflection is imperative to living a purposeful life. Know when to speak and when to observe. When to battle and when to retreat. Because after all, everything begins and ends with you.