Someone recently told me that they had a visit from their parent from out of state and that, at the very end of the visit, their parent told them something to the effect of, “So, take care of yourself. I worry about you. And, I love you very much.”
So then, what’s the problem?
The problem is that they spent an entire week together and such words were never uttered until the very end of the visit, literally at the train station!
It’s amazing how little we can say to each other despite how much time we might spend together.
We can sit with friends for hours, yet never ask them how they’re doing. We can visit with family for days, yet never REALLY talk.
Oh, sure, we kid around, we “hang out”, we “do stuff”. All well and true.
But do we really say the things that are worth saying and so very valuable? Ever?
Or do we say them, but only at the end?
Here are five signs that something may be extremely valuable to say to someone in your life:
1. it’s hard for you to say
2. it feels awkward or ‘weird’
3. it embarrasses you
4. you worry that it will embarrass the other person
5. you hardly ever say it
Yet, time will go by and we won’t ever say these types of things. Things which might lead to good, intimate conversation. Things which might bring us closer. Things which might help us grow. Things which might make us feel less alone and isolated.
The reason we often wait until ‘the end’ to say the things that should be said, is because they are not routine things for us to say.
So change the routine, then.
Next time you’re with someone who you care about, catch yourself and feel the moment. Then, take a risk and say the thing that’s hard to say.
The other person would have said it too, if they knew what you know now.
Anthony Ferraioli, M.D.
Author, “Don’t Get Married! (Unless You Understand a Few Things First)