At a meeting earlier this week, I found myself criticizing a friend’s opinion of someone else’s work. She admitted to relating to it from a specific perspective which, in my view, was not at all objective. Her feedback was colored by this and I called her on it. While saying what I had to say, I found myself thinking: “What are you doing? This is your friend. Am I being too hard on or unfair to her?” This insight did not, however, stop me from my little rant. So I phoned this morning to explain and apologize, which I believe was the right thing to do.
This incident is bringing up a lot of feelings. Here’s my analysis.
Sometimes the gap between speaking my truth and wanting to be liked is so apparent to me. Is this gap closing? Maybe it is because I really do stand by what I said to my friend. I don’t believe that I personally attacked her, but I sense she felt that way, which is why I apologized. She is a nice person and has been so supportive of me that I don’t want to antagonize or push her away. (I believe this is called co-dependency) But in taking a deeper look at this — and this parallels my relationship with other people – I, rather my EGO wants and needs to be liked, to be stroked.
Because I am lucky enough to have several people in my life who love me enough to call me on my “stuff”, I’m learning that I don’t wish to ignore my own behavior anymore. It is my need to be liked that drives me to say what is easy and popular but not necessarily what I truly think, and it’s not healthy for me anymore. Let’s just say this behavior was a survival tactic that brought me to where I am today and that it is no longer working;. In fact, it is hampering my growth. Perhaps this person’s role in my life thus far was to bring this lesson home. In addition, my friend has also shown me this: that someone can believe in me to a much greater degree than I am capable of believing in myself at present. And they don’t seem to want much more from me than that reciprocal belief in return. If, in fact, I do truly feel that way.
So on this snowy January morning, I can get back to the normal business of the day. And while I do this, I will take this insight with me. Let’s see where it leads. As always, it is part of The Journey.