Anytime that I’ve grown as a person, it’s because someone told me the truth regardless of whether or not it hurt my feelings. It’s easy to appease someone’s ego by telling them that they’re wonderful and everything they’re doing is awesome. But, the real growth comes when you are able to hear what you need to work on. Recently, I’ve been dealing with some harsh truths about myself. It’s difficult when people point out what’s causing you trouble in your life, however, it ultimately helps you, or it helps me. Sometimes the truth, coming from someone you care about, can bring you to tears. On the other hand, sometimes people seem like they are giving you constructive criticism when in reality they are trying to put you down. And that’s not about you, that’s about them.
But I’m focusing on the times that the harsh truth has helped me. In order to change, the people that love me the most have dropped some major truth bombs on me. I needed to grow up, I needed to stop being co-dependent, I need to be more financially responsible. All of those things were true, and I’m working on those things. It’s hard to look at yourself in the mirror knowing that that reflection is flawed. Flawed, it’s a funny thing we do in this world…we see “flawed” as “bad.” We are all flawed. We all have things that we don’t particularly care for about ourselves. It’s what makes us people as opposed to robots. Although, I have to admit that I’ve wanted to be a robot a lot in my life. Robots are emotionless and probably react better to criticism. Also, robots can keep going after someone insults them because they have wheels. I would love to have wheels.
But I digress, we’re talking about the truth. Since I’ve confronted these harsh realities about myself, I’ve been able to work on the changes that I want to make in my life. The hardest thing about making changes in life is recognizing when you’re starting to engage in an old habit or self-destructive behavior. Once you realize it, then it’s time to stop, and change that behavior. Man, this is one of the hardest things I’ve ever done, but it’s worth it. I sat in therapy the other day and I said “I know this is going to be hard, and I’m going to feel afraid. I’m ready for that.” The key for me is not letting my frustration get the best of me. Progress is slow when you’re actively working to change yourself.
Let me clear, I don’t want to change who I am. I want to change the behaviors that aren’t serving me anymore. I want to develop healthy ways to reassure myself when I’m anxious rather than looking to outside sources to make me feel better for example. Reassurance seeking is a BIG part of having OCD. The trick is to find a way to cope with that uncomfortable feeling and survive it.
What about you? Are you trying to change some of your old behaviors? Have your friends dropped truth bombs on you?