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How to speak your truth without being hurtful to others

There’s a lot of talk these days about “being authentic” and sharing “your truth”. And while I certainly think these are important things, many times these terms have been used to justify being a straight up brat and instead of “being vulnerable” we tend to spew it all out without grace or awareness of others.

There’s a huge difference between tactfully sharing how you feel and what is true for you and being unaware of how this lands for others.

I think we are in danger of creating an “authentic brat no boundary spiritual vomit” community if we are not careful.

Ultimately the measure of your spiritual progress is not in your vocabulary or in your alter design. It’s not in how much you pray or meditate. It’s not in how much yoga you do or how alkaline your body is.

At the end of the day: do others feel loved in your presence?

This is the spiritual bottom line.

Forget your spiritual vocabulary – how do you show up? What is your intention? How do others feel in your presence?

These are the valuable questions we must begin to ask ourselves.

As it relates to sharing your truth – this is something that must be done. However, it must be done in a graceful, loving and compassionate way. It’s important to be aware of how what you say lands for others.

And while your are not ultimately responsible for how others feel or take what you say, you can do your best to help truth land in a way that cares for and elevates others, rather than tearing them down or judging them.

The best way we’ve seen to do this is to stay in your experience. Say what’s true for you. Say how you feel. The actual emotion of how you feel. Not how you feel by calling someone else a name.

Better to say, “I feel unseen when you do this”. Rather than, “I feel like you are an asshole for doing this.”

When we stay in our experience and take ownership for how we are showing up, we put ourselves in a situation where others are more receptive to hearing our truth.

And while we can’t make your truth hurt proof, what we can do is help it to land in a way where other people understand where you are coming from.

Sometimes your truth can hurt.

I’m leaving you – that can be your truth. And that can sting. But when you stay in your lane and own your experience, it makes the truth able to be heard in a way that will be a lesson rather than a trauma.

Also, check yourself. Why are you sharing what you are sharing? Ask yourself, “Will sharing this genuinely uplift or help the person I’m sharing it with?”

Truths that hurt can uplift, however, spewing your baggage can be damaging.

Look into the eyes of the person you are sharing your truth with. Don’t hold back because you are scared – but do your best to elevate them, even if it hurts temporarily.

Don’t hold back because you are scared of their reaction; stand strong in what you need to say. Say what you mean, just don’t say it mean.

The quality of our lives is in direct relationship to how many uncomfortable conversations we are willing to have.

Don’t put off these conversations, have the courage to have them. And do it in a way that serves those you are talking to.

They will be eventually grateful you did.

Have the courage to speak up. And make your intention to love others as you do.

In the comments let me know how you plan to lovingly speak up today.

Lots of LOVE from Athens,

Mastin

P.S. Take what resonates and leave the rest.

 

 

  • Abigail Duffy

    I completely appreciate this blog. Standing up for your truth can also be addressed in learning to stand up for yourself. While this is a lesson I am working on at the moment, it’s helpful to remember that I don’t have to fight for a specific boundary and be overly aggressive in doing so. What I need to fight for is my right to be me. It continues to change my tone from hostile to confident. Thank you for such a good reminder to speak truth in love.

    • The Daily Love

      Yes Abigail! Totally shifts the tone. Love this :) thanks for sharing! – Team TDL

  • Coots

    I did this as the relationship felt toxic. Said lovingly too. Simply stated the many hurts inflicted in me over the years and the person did not like hearing it nor owned up to any of them let alone apologize. So it probably was not a friendship all along & needed to be released.

    • The Daily Love

      Powerful Coots! Inspiring to hear your perspective! <3 – Team TDL

  • merrill frailey

    Love, Love, Love this post! It is what we all need to hear. As a life coach I am always asking my clients to “Use their voice well to ask for what they need and to explain how they feel.” Tone, timing and delivery is so important for effective communication. I feel my biggest job as a coach is to make others feel LOVED, worthy and enough for who they are. As is. Keep on LOVING us BIG Mastin! Merrill http://www.Merrillfrailey.com

    • The Daily Love

      So important Merrill! Thanks for sharing with us today! :) – Team TDL

      • anne

        when I ‘m faced with speaking my truth in uncomfortable situation, like with a family member, it helps me to remind myself that I’m woth defending my needs, and that I find approbation within myself, whatever the others think. At the same time , before talking , I repeat myself: first love, then look at the situation, first love, then talk. It helps me to access loving ressources that wil guide me day the appropriate words, take the good decision in that situation.
        with love
        Anne

  • Chris

    My experience of my feelings is greater with the details you illuminate, Thank you!

    • The Daily Love

      Love that Chris!! Thanks for sharing! <3 – Team TDL

  • wdean

    Good morning, Mastin and team! “Say what you mean, just don’t say it mean.” has been one of my biggest communication improvements since including your Daily Love into my life the past few years…I appreciate today’s words deeply. By becoming more aware, thoughtful, and loving, I’ve been able to take “the bite” out of sharing my truth, and the premise of “life is good” is more powerful than ever. Have a great Saturday:)

    • The Daily Love

      Glad you enjoyed todays blog WDean! Thanks for sharing this with us :) – Team TDL

  • Mumbi

    This blog has arrived in Divine perfect timing!! It confirms the courage I took the other day to have a challenging conversation with my beloved despite the fear of his reaction. I stood my truth, spoke kindly and from my heart not my anger or frustration. I felt such a great sense of relief and joy!!! I feel lighter and his reaction was loving. I was proud to have finally been courageous enough to dive in and overcome my deep seated fears. Thank you Daily Love!!!

    • The Daily Love

      Beautiful to hear it put into action Mumbie! Thanks for opening up and sharing with us! <3 – Team TDL

  • Yasmin

    I have a friendship which I feel is no longer honouring for me, and that maybe I need to address. I have known this person for over ten years. Although we don’t often get to see each other, we have always been in regular contact by phone. We met through work, and I always admired her ability and skills to show up for her patients, but at the same time, was aware she could be very changeable, and a little aggressive in terms of how she related to many work colleagues, impatient, irritable, and just generally unpredictable. I never experienced this personally, but was aware of it. For a while now whenever I call her I have noticed certain patterns that have set in. She is now no longer working, and so is at home a large portion of the time. She will either get her husband to pick up the phone, and he will say she’s sleeping, taking the dog out, or has gone out and he doesn’t know what time she will be back. Or. She will cut our calls very short, by saying she has to take the dog out, or the boiler man has come, or she’s in the middle of cooking food. Often she will say, she will call me back the following day, then doesn’t. The interesting thing for me, is that if I just don’t make any contact with her, which truthfully I am more than happy to do now, she will call me on her own terms, as if nothing has happened. But it is, always on her own terms. She is also someone who gets easily defensive, and I know that if I tried to raise this with her, she would be less than gracious. I really have no problem at all in letting this friendship go, but I know that she will continue to call. I have gone for several weeks without making any contact with her and then she always gets in touch, so I have given her good opportunity to gently exit our friendship if she wants to. How to stand up for your truth in a friendship where you want to move on, and let it go. To be honest, and just say so, or, to simply avoid confrontation, and stop taking her calls???

    • The Daily Love

      What would happen if you shared your concerns with your friend from a place of Love Yasmin? <3 – Team TDL

      • Yasmin

        She would be defensive, and quite possibly hang up the call. The more open Ive become as a person in trying to move from a place of love and authenticity in general, the more this seems to have divided us. Infact she often sais ‘attack is the best form of defence’, and she’s not joking. So, I’m guessing that would be my experience.

        • fromthekiwigirl

          In preparation, I have learnt is to write out what you would like to say first and rehearse saying it to yourself while looking in the mirror. You will know if this feels genuine or not. I wish I had done this myself. Peace+Honey

    • Irena

      Yasmin, you raise an interesting question. I was in that kind of friendship’s situation. And what I learnt from that that either way: to say the truth or to avoid the contact, wont solve the purpose. Because these situations appeared for me to see something within myself. Something what these people by their behaviors helping me to understand. It was not about them, it was about me. And if I don’t do my work, situation may appear again though through different messengers/ friends until I will get the real reason why it happens.
      Ask yourself why did you call your friend all these years in the first place? What did you get from that? What emotions were satisfied ? Could it be that you felt special since she didn’t show you her temper, and now when she does, its not pleasant anymore. You don’t feel respected by her? And it hurts? If this is a case, as it was in my relations, the remedy was for me to learn not to depend on other people opinion of myself, but build my own confidence. And I did ended that friendship by the way. But with appreciation to that person for what she taught me for. Hope you will find something valuable in my sharing:)

      • Yasmin

        Thank you Irena. That’s really made me think. I called her my friend all these years, because I think we shared true friendship. But actually she is a fair bit older than me, and with hindsight it was always colleagues who were around her own age who would challenge her and ‘bump heads’ with her, maybe because they saw her temperament as unacceptable at times. I think now I am older two, the dynamic has changed, and I have definitely since gone on to have discussions with her and share my opinions which I’m sure she doesn’t respect, or share. Ive changed, grown, and yes, it’s possible that our conversations and the energy between us isn’t enough to sustain a friendship. I have indeed found value in your sharing.

  • http://www.drsweta.com/ Dr. Sweta – the self expressio

    I just wrote a blog on this because as I used to lie all the time to my family. It was just easier to say I was going to a friends place then tell an overprotective Indian father I was going to a salsa social (as there would be boys there!) I got so good at telling little “white lies” that I was so unaware of how much I was doing it. I would hear things like be vulnerable include your parents but I did not have the language and that is what I feel people struggle with. I slow started to actually find the words to express myself. So I would say things like “I’m a little nervous to share this with you, because I do not want to disappoint you” to my boss or my ego does not want to ask for this but I would really like a ride as I want to see you but do not have a car to my best friend. These were relatively small things and may not bother others but we all have areas where we feel embarrased are scared or feel sensitive to say our truth.
    As I reflect, I can see how mastering the art of vulnerability is probably the key thing to me turning my life around in a very short time. It helped me have some beautiful memories with my father during his last year of life, it helped me to leave a 10 year job on good terms, get the support of my hubby to follow my passion and leave a stable 6 figure career to be a coach and author, meld a relationship with my brother and have real connections with my friends. learning the language of truth has made my world bigger! It’s so valuable even more than becoming fluent in spanish which opened my world quite a bit :-)

  • VB

    This is my biggest issue, learning to overcome the fear and anxiety speak up and not down play feelings, dealing with things when they happen, holding anger. Great article!

    • The Daily Love

      Yes VB! Your feelings are valid! Thanks for reading today :) – Team TDL

  • Talya Price

    Great Article.

    • The Daily Love

      Glad you enjoyed this one Talya, grateful to have you a part of the Daily Love community :) – Team TDL

  • anita

    Whenever I am vulnerable and ask “a” for help at work she bits my head off and puts me down. The other day she had to ask me for help on something and I responded in the most loving helpful way possible….kindness, and love always prevails. My hope is that one day, eventually she will be grateful for that. Thank you

    • The Daily Love

      That’s right Anita! Way to go!! <3 – Team TDL

  • NicoleV

    Agree with others that said this came at the perfect time. Thank you Mastin and the Daily Love team. I feel more ready to have a difficult conversation with someone I care deeply for. Favorite line – “Say what you mean, just don’t say it mean. “

    • The Daily Love

      So glad you enjoyed todays blog Nicole! Let us know how it goes!! <3 – Team TDL

  • mschloek

    I loved reading this. Perfect timing. I just went through a terribly hurtful breakup after 3+ years. I’ve vented about all the things i put up with, the many ways I’ve hurt. And no for my ex hearing those things would be hurtful in the way I said them. Although they were true, to friends I’ve vented to it painted a very shocking picture of who she really is in relationships and how broken she is inside. But I must admit that because I love her i felt guilty at times and wanted a better way to convey the reasons we broke up. So I silenced myself…but then I felt I wasn’t honoring my feelings. Now reading this article sums it up. “We broke up because I was tired of feeling betrayed, hurt, unappreciated, used and disrespected.” So that will be my answer from now on without all the horrible details….besides reliving by telling the story of the last few years drains and robs me of good feelings now.

  • xandy

    regardless of what ends up happening today, I hope to remember that i want to always be IN each moment as much as possible. And, I want to be able to lean INTO any interaction and conversation, not avoid it. I choose temporary discomfort over long term pain. namaste.

  • Sarah

    A brilliant article indeed – it’s never easy to have courageous conversations and when I had one some months ago; as hard as it was – it freed me and reminded me of my self worth and how I like to be treated. The theme for me that kept coming back was think, say and do from a point of love – it’s healing to the soul!

  • Domingo

    I just had a disagreement with my roommate and shortly after decided to read the Daily Love email and I am glad I did. We had a disagreement and I reacted out of feeling judged and said things that I would normally not say because I felt I had to meet her where she’s at to get her to listen and respect where I was coming from. After ending the conversation with some tension I decided to explain how I felt when certain things were said and she shared as well. I am glad that shortly after having a disagreement in which I felt uncomfortable I was able to read how to resolve future issues and still be heard. I will remember, as I try to share my truth, I do not have to prove anyone wrong in the process.

  • fromthekiwigirl

    Thank you Mastin. I watched “The King’s Speech.” What a powerful movie. Carol Tuttle suggested to do the exercises from the movie, if you feel that your Throat Chakra is blocked. I have struggled to ‘find my voice’ and have expressed with anger instead of compassion. Wanting to be heard and deservedly so but knowing how to deliver it with kindness and love. Working on this one. Peace+Honey.

  • Laura

    Reading this blog is like comfort food to my soul. I have a need to be fueled in the way that I see myself and just how to react when I’m feeling like I’m being judged by others. I want to speak up and speak out without sounding defensive, I just would like my point of view to come across and to make a positive difference.

  • Claudia Aponte

    This is so true. And this is where I struggle the most. I feel like someone crushed my throat chakra. I have the hardest time talking about my feelings. And when I do I am so mean. This is something I do need to practice. Speaking my truth in a nicer way while being mindful of the other person’s feelings.

    Thank you Mastin!