Yet when we let our partner know how we feel we let them know us.
When you let your partner know how you feel towards him or her, you have the greatest likelihood of being able to work through or "complete" the feeling.
In short, to be done with it.
You can live in fear or anger toward someone for a long time without any change until you finally let the person know how you feel. Appropriately, respectfully, and authentically.
Once you do, you no longer need to "hold" the feeling in secret or silence.
Relief, freedom, peace is the outcome of revealing our feelings to our partners.
The first rule in sharing your vulnerabilities and feelings to your partner is respect.
If he or she is not truly ready or willing to hear you, you are likely to go away feeling discounted and misunderstood. When you are ready to tell your partner about your feelings, ask him or her to make time to listen to you.
You may say, "I have something important to say an I would like you to listen." If the other person interrupts you, you might say, "Would you please wait until I am finished. Then I would like to hear what you have to say." When your partner truly listens to you, it means that they give you their undivided attention, they don't interrupt, and they don't offer any advice, opinions, or judgements.
They just listen. Silently and attentively.
They may ask a question or summarize what you just said occasionally.
This summarizing is called active listening.
Good listening skills on the part of your partner will actually enhance your ability to disclose and communicate more about what you are feeling. In addition, the person you are speaking to can best listen if you respect him or her and refrain from blaming or making him or her feel responsible for your feelings.
The three skills needed to accomplish this are:
1. Use first person statements. "I feel..." or "I am feeling..." In this way you take responsibility for your feelings rather than putting them off onto the other person. The moment you tell someone, "You made me feel..." you relinquish your responsibility and put the other person on the defensive.
2. Refer to the other person's behavior rather than making a personal attack. Initially you may be angry at the other person or scared of the other person, however this usually turns out to be over generalization and accomplishes little. You will then discover you are really angry or scared at what the other person said or did, not them.
3. Avoid Judgements. This point speaks for itself and is an extension of the previous point of blaming and pushing someone away rather than communicating and taking responsibility for your own feelings.
Strong feelings are often a clue to unmet needs. By looking for the "need" behind your feelings you can give your feelings a new and deeper perspective.
View your negative feelings as a sign not a problem.
Remember, Identify, clarify, express.
"The Anxiety and Phobia Workbook", Bourne