What Do You Really Want Here?

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The key to any relationship is communication. And I’ve always thought that communication is like a dance. One person takes a step forward, the other takes a step back. Even a single misstep can land both people on the floor in a tangle of confusion. And when you find yourself in that position—with your spouse, your colleague, your friend, your child—I’ve found that the best option is to always ask the other person, “What do you really want here?” At first, you might notice a little squirming, a lot of throat clearing, maybe some silence. But if you stay quiet long enough to get the real answer, I guarantee it will be some variation of the following: “I want to know that you value me.” Extend a hand of connection and understanding, and offer three of the most important words any of us can ever receive: “I hear you.” I know for sure your relationship will be the better for it.
Oprah Winfrey

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Let Fear Make You Brave

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When has shrinking ourselves because of fear helped us? It has never helped. Fear is an emotion that should visit and when it leaves, it should make you brave. It should make you want to do more, create more and learn more. Fear is normal but when we let fear stay too long, it paralyzes us.
Lara Witt, from “Decolonizing Poetry: an interview with Ijeoma Umebinyuo.

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See The Sanity In The Sadness

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So instead of seeing your depression and anxiety as a form of madness, I would tell my younger self — you need to see the sanity in this sadness. You need to see that it makes sense. Of course it is excruciating… But it doesn’t mean that the pain is insane, or irrational. If you touch your hand to a burning stove, that, too, will be agony, and you will snatch your hand away as quickly as possible. That’s a sane response. If you kept your hand on the stove, it would burn and burn until it was destroyed. Depression and anxiety might, in one way, be the sanest reaction you have. It’s a signal, saying — you shouldn’t have to live this way, and if you aren’t helped to find a better path, you will be missing out on so much that is best about being human.
Johann Hari

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