I've written about "speaking your truth" before, but this week it's been more important than ever. If there's one thing I will not stand for, it's disrespect. When someone speaks to me in a condescending, derogatory or just plain rude tone, I have to say something about it. But it's not easy to stand up for yourself.
You can say whatever you want to anyone, but you have to learn to do it the right way. When I encounter people who use "That's just my personality; I'm direct" as an excuse for rudeness, I am appalled.
But does it even have anything to do with me? I am guilty of being overly sensitive, and I recognize that. I constantly have to remind myself that the way someone behaves toward me often has nothing to do with me. However, it's important for me to let people know I do not appreciate being spoken to in such a harsh way.
In yoga, truthfulness is satya, one of the yamas. While I try to focus on being as honest as possible about how I feel, I recognize that I need to do so with the intention of being understanding as well.
I remember a workshop we had during teacher training in which we were instructed to ask ourselves, "How would I live if I weren't concerned with the opinions of others?" It is a constant battle for me to not worry about what people think. I sometimes avoid confrontation because I stress about how my actions will be perceived. But I would rather be seen as sensitive than walk away from interactions with such a negative feeling about not only the conversation, but my whole environment.
I have to be honest about how things affect me. I have to also be honest about what I want. It is teaching me that I need to make changes in my life instead of solely complaining to Graham about them. How can I expect change when I never speak out about something that bothers me? I often think of the quote by Maggie Kuhn (I think) that reads something like, "Speak the truth, even if your voice shakes." That's exactly what I plan to do.