Most of my clients are beautiful smart empathetic women, that have been taught very early in their life how to behave depending on the energies in their family. It’s been an unconscious pattern for a very long time that we either discover together or they understood it and come to me for support.
In this pattern, anger, confrontation and/or conflict are often shamed or bring up shame because their voice has never been welcomed by their surroundings circles.
Anger and conflict have actually been a big part in my life. Mainly because it was my family’s way of functioning. And then my very first boss. Getting mad for every little thing. And for what was concerning me, it was usually getting mad at me when I was discussing a point. Discussing does not mean disagreeing, but for them, it was seen as such and thus discussion was not allowed.
For a while my struggle was to be able to let that anger out because it was definitely not welcomed as an answer. Technically speaking, everybody else could yell at me, but not me.
I did have a physical practice – orienteering (running in the forest with a map and compass, trying to find specific points in a certain order, as fast as possible), and cross-country skiing, which was helping a lot. But it took me years and years to get to the point where my partner at the time said “Marianne, you are always angry, you need to do something”. And there came the guilt of not being better than everybody else and the shame of repeating what others were doing to me, and hurting my loved one(s).
So I worked hard on my anger, read books, and really started to become much more aware of that feeling.
After a while though, I came to a point where I decided to do all I could not to yell anymore and see my anger as an indicator of what needed work in my Life. It all came down to a choice I made about how I wanted to show up in the world, what I wanted to be remembered for and how I wanted to love the people that were around me.
By that point, we become leaders. Answering to a mission, serving the world with love.
You are so attached to spreading love. You have understood that it all starts with you. You have become so aware of yourself, so accustomed to your strengths and weaknesses, that your tipping point is much higher than it used to be. You are strong. Independent. And loving. And your choice, that promise you made to yourself, keeps you in a safe space, connected to your heart, where you are not compromising anything and still not reacting to a criticism or a possible attack like you would have in the past.
By knowing yourself so well, being much more loving to yourself first and foremost, you can take a step back and see the person facing you much more fully. Much more like another human being, just like you, seeking love and understanding, just like you have. So you can then identify and understand their limitations. And thus, you can provide them with that love and understanding but also handle the conflict with much more distance, guiding them to express what they cannot understand and leading them back to peace and calm easily.
And those people angry at you, confronting you, with their limitations, can actually be your dad, your mom, sibling, manager, coworker, friend, …. And whatever the role that you have, you can still lift above this all and guide the conversation towards their own growth into that, rather than falling into a pattern where their anger and inability to understand themselves or communicate properly block your own light and love.
Though, by being that leader, you are also able to insert your boundaries. Love is not over-giving, all-accepting and perpetuating imbalanced unhealthy relationships. Love is when both people can be fully themselves while supporting each other and become their best version together.
I see boundaries setting as planting seeds. If those people getting angry at you cannot really process what is being said during the confrontation, they will have those seeds to come back to, and reflect on, and wake up one day feeling lighter and better because that conversation may very well have been their breaking open to another version of themselves, much more deeply loving and understanding. Some people don’t learn the easy way. And sometimes they require someone stronger to stand up against them, and show them the way.
Standing up against people that have often been in charge of ruling your Life is hard.
Getting to know their limitations, being on the receiving end of their mistakes/lack of self-awareness, and having to isolate yourself, choosing your Light, your heart, your truth and fairness above all else, is hard.
The hardest thing I have ever done myself.
It is a lonely place for those of us for which this is the path.
But after many years of doing so, keeping on going when it is hard, still believing in my heart, in that voice that reminds me of my values, I can tell you that the tables are turning, that more and more understanding, kind and loving people are entering my Life. Letting each of us lift each other up, supporting us, growing together, and healing the world with strong boundaries, respect and fairness as values, and community, connection and love as a result. And the best news is that the people that were once angry at me, limited to another level in Life, did reflect on the seeds planted, grew and apologized, grateful for the shifts in our relationships.
Your anger is nothing to be ashamed of. The work lies in understanding it, expressing it in a healthy way and using it as an indicator of what’s happening in the moment, reminding you of what needs to be done and of the choice you have made about who you want to be, how you want to react and what you want to feed in the world.
Conflict is nothing to be afraid of. The best fight will always be the one that you can avoid. Teaching people to express their emotions not at their peak, but when both parts can be in control. But if you get pulled in a conflict or confrontation, you now know that you can step into it as a leader. Facing the person’s limitations, planting seeds for their own growth, leading them to a more loving and understanding version of themselves.
This is a big subject and one I know very important in my client’s life. If this resonates with you, know that you are not alone and I will be happy to hop on a call and support you. Book a free impromptu call or free discovery call, it will be my pleasure to get to know you and see what we can do together.