Sunday, 2 October 2011

It’s good to talk

For someone who is known for being a bit of a big mouth, it may come as a surprise that I find it hard to talk. No not about random rubbish, or my many mundane musings, but letting out my true feelings. I have always tended to be the one friends come to for help and advice, their shoulder to lean on. However, when it comes to myself, I’m not too good at coming forward.

I can remember when young, if something was worrying me or I was upset I would tend to keep it in and eventually resort to writing my parents a note to let out my troubles. In fact, I’m pretty sure I used to do the same with one of my first boyfriends.

I am very good at advising others on how to approach things, but not so good for reaching out and letting people know things have got tough and I need a hand. Looking back, at secondary school I was known as being good at putting a brave face on things and once when I broke up with a ‘boyfriend’ I shed a tear or two and people were in shock. I’d cried, I had actually let out a sign of emotion. Something must be wrong!

This year I have really discovered the power of talking and letting out your feelings though. Not rocket science I know. Sharing your feelings rather than keeping them all locked up is clearly going to be more beneficial, but for someone like me it is so hard to do. You’re the one who helps everyone else, there isn’t time to sit and wallow about your own worries!

When things are bothering me I guess the main people I tend to go to are my boyfriend and my parents. However, often you can find people who are more ‘outsiders’ can help, they don’t have any ties to people you know and so can give unbiased advice without the worry of them accidentally letting slip to somebody else in your group of friends. Whether work colleagues, a friend-of-a-friend or a random Facebook buddy, you could have your perfect listener waiting out there, ready to help.

My friends are there for me I know, but I think because I am not a very open person when it comes to problems I’m having they don’t tend to push me to talk. However, for some reason one of my friends – she’ll know who she is – really can get me to open up and I can talk for ages to her, honestly and openly, about pretty much anything. This has done me the world of good. Plus she is quite a strong individual and is great at making me ‘man up’ as she’d put it and face my fears. Something I am very grateful for and I hope I do the same for her.

This weekend I needed to have a bit of an awkward conversation for example – no details going to be revealed here I’m afraid – and I had been tiptoeing around things for some time. Just by talking a weight lifted, by being completely honest and trusting that I could tell the truth and say how I truly felt really eased a burden. In fact I was shocked how much of a difference just 90 minutes of talking could make.

Anyway I’m not going to go on and bore you about it all and probably most people out there aren’t as bad as me when it comes to reaching out. I guess really I just wanted to share. I just wanted to say make sure you talk. Life is too short to be unhappy, worry about how you come across and how you phrase things. Life is about sharing and if you don’t share the good times and the bad with other people what’s the point? You can’t always be the shoulder to cry on, the ear at the end of the phone, or the person with all the answers. Make sure you take time out for you and be a little ‘selfish’ (go on, admit it, that’s how you see it) sometimes and let other people help you. And perhaps those people in your life who you feel perhaps aren’t there for you, would be better at it if you were more honest with them about how you feel from the start.

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