Few days ago, I suddenly remembered an incidence which was related to the interpersonal relationship. I actually forgot about this incidence all these years. It was when I was in Grade 5 or 6 and I joined the exchange group to an Island. It wasn’t the first time I left my parents but it was the first time I went to a week long trip with bunch of people I have no relationship with.
I don’t remember exactly what happened but by the time I remember, I was suddenly smacked by a member in my group. I remember following day, we had a group meeting and I was surprised another member in the group actually said that she can’t see why I should got smacked. She was actually really close with that person who smacked me. Probably this was the time I thought scary about friendship that someone can suddenly turn their back.
So what’s my fear in relation to this?
My fear is to lose a trust in a friend. My fear is in ‘correct’ interpersonal relationship as determined by others.
Fear is a reaction.
Courage is a decision.Winston S. Churchill
This wasn’t the only time I misjudged the situation. In another time, I was much younger. I was visiting one of my aunties and she was talking to someone else asking for my other auntie. My auntie said to this person that she hasn’t see her for awhile but I knew that wasn’t the truth because I just saw my other auntie just then. So, out of my kindness, I tried to pass on the truth to this person. Then, I got smacked on face by my auntie who tried to cover up.
What I have learnt from these situations is to not become too close or trust others. What I see as truth might be superficial and there are more to the story. When I try to enforce the truth without considering others, that person is likely to get aggressive and will physically shut me up to cover for the truth.
I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it.
The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.Nelson Mandela
This is probably one of the reasons that I need to speak up. For many times, my voice was diminished as not existed. I was living in the state where I cannot even voice out my own thinking or express what I wanted to say.
If you summon your courage to challenge something, you’ll never be left with regret.
How sad it is to spend your life wishing, “If only I’d had a little more courage.”
Whatever the outcome may be, the important thing is to step forward on the path that you believe is right.Daisaku Ikeda
More I tried not to say, more I become afraid to voice myself. I learnt to drift away in my thinking when things are not interesting or not my place to say anything. I learnt to zone out in the busy and noisy environment. This skill had saved myself but it didn’t save my urge to express myself. Eventually, I started to experience emotional explosion. I would become really emotional and didn’t know how to control them.
With courage, you will dare to take risks, have the strength to be compassionate, and the wisdom to be humble.
Courage is teh foundation of integrity.Mark Twain
Recently, as I found myself, I gained confidence in express myself. This was my courage. It might be different to others but I actually feel relieved by expressing myself. More I tried to express myself, I have found more people would listen to me. Knowing someone is willing to listen to my ideas or perspective, while I respect their thinking too, I feel I am worth voicing my thinking. Indeed, I realised that I have choice to whether keep it to myself or express it to others and who I express it to.
I also learnt to selectively listen to what I want to hear. Non-constructive feedback can be ignored. Criticisms without any evidence can be ignored. Words that attacks my personality or character can be ignored too. I have choice to listen attentively or not. I can choose not to give in to the comments that’s not going to help my growth.
What are you allowing to influence your growth?
How do you overcome your fear?
Do you have courage to support your decision?