I had an interesting conversation yesterday with a friend of mine. We were discussing someone he knew that was going through some similar personal problems as I am – and how every time he would talk to her, he had to remind her to stop replaying the “talk track” that was in her head. He said it was as if she was trying to convince herself of all the transgressions and reasonings why she should be mad or upset with her soon-to-be-ex-partner.
It had me thinking about my own talk tracks – and why we use them. In my friend’s circumstance – he was just tired of hearing the constant nitpicking and wanted her to stop – but he also lumped women in general as being common instigators for this type of behavior. But if we look at the potential reasons behind WHY she was doing that – it becomes a clearer picture – at least to me. When we’re gearing ourselves up to leave a spouse or partner – there is a moment where the pendulum swings back and forth as you argue with yourself over what action to take next. It takes a certain level of courage to be able to clearly say that something isn’t working for you and that you’re going to do something to change it. And sometimes you have to have that talk track running through your brain in order to build up the momentum and courage to tackle those conversations. To be brave enough to say the things that have been causing us pain. Especially when we’re talking about breakups. They are so final. And if you care about the person – whether they hurt you or not – you certainly don’t like to do anything to cause that person pain. But you also potentially want out – so you run this script in your head and it gives you the anger and the energy and the fuel you need to have it out and get on with it.
My friend’s words were wise tho. If you stop playing that script in your head, there’s a chance that you can be present in the moment – and perhaps realize that there’s opportunity for growth and change in ways you hadn’t been considering. The risk of doing this, of course, is that you could have a pendulum swing moment and lose the momentum and courage to seek change. But – you also could find a moment where you can find forgiveness.
It’s a moment where you can switch the focus from blaming someone else to looking deep within and find the areas where you could have done something differently. It’s a moment when you can identify where your own growth opportunities lie.
It’s important to me to call out here: Forgiveness doesn’t mean you’re excusing the other person’s behavior. It doesn’t mean they automatically become pardoned. It also doesn’t mean you have to put away all the feelings you may have about a situation. It doesn’t mean you have to allow the person to stay in your circle. And it doesn’t mean you’ve forgotten what happened. Forgiveness simply means you’ve accepted the reality of the situation and are working on ways to live with it. Forgiveness isn’t about the other person – it’s really about YOU.
In this situation – I thought through my talk tracks that I’ve got going now – in all areas of my life. How I think about my work, how I think about my marriage, how I think about myself. My talk tracks about myself tend to be a lot harsher than what I share out to others. And thinking through this further – it helped me see that it’s time to switch my script a little. To find forgiveness and kindness and openness within myself, for myself.
Hope you all are well here in Neverland. 🙂 Much love.