The Story I'm Telling Myself

Happy Fall. How are things in your corner of our world today?

We've seen a few things lately that have made my heart happy; 
this throw is from the Quilt Show at the Caldwell Kolache Festival.

Wouldn't it feel amazing to be wrapped up in this loveliness?

We caught these classic character pillars casting shadows at the entrance to the Texas A & M RELLIS campus in College Station. 

Fun fact: They are topped with small wind turbines.

And lately, we've enjoyed sitting poolside as the song of the cicada 
shortens and the September sunsets light up the sky's canvas.
Here now, a Mindful Moment in our backyard.
Watch as the colors change across the Autumn sky;
listen as the cicadas serenade and imagine the cool breeze,
a break from the heat and humidity of the sub-tropical
weather patterns of Southeastern Texas.
On this particular night, it started to sprinkle
and I loved listening to the raindrops' accompaniment.

So much beauty if only we'll get still enough to savor it.

I've been reflecting on something that I read in
Brené Brown's book Dare To Lead this summer.
She suggests that when you're having those
difficult but critical courageous conversations, 
that you start with these six powerful words:
The story I'm telling myself is ... 

So, for example, I wrote an important email two weeks ago
that has yet to be acknowledged or replied to.
If/When I choose to follow up, Brené's response will serve me well:
The story I'm telling myself when you don't respond
to my email is that I don't matter.

Now, here's where it's important to be crystal clear.

Just because that's the story I'm telling myself,
doesn't make it all together accurate.
Every story, after all, has two sides.

But it's my current truth, so there's that.

With this strategy, the person on the receiving end of my
"care-frontation" gets the opportunity to practice empathy,
to see the situation through my eyes,
to hear it through my head,
to experience it through my heart.

If I'm courageous enough to share my heart,
to let them in on the story I'm telling myself, that is. 

Sometimes it's a look someone gives me,
their body language, their tone.
I can try to ignore of dismiss it,
but if the story I'm telling myself
overwhelms and starts to get me down,
a freeing alternative is to check it out,
to let that person know what the story I'm telling myself is
and how it's affecting me and our relationship.

It's hard.

Really hard.

Sometimes really really hard.

Because it's vulnerable.

Really vulnerable.

Usually really really vulnerable.

And it's important.

Really important.

Always really really important.

I said it.
Now I've got an important
follow-up email to write.

Or better yet, how about I pick up the phone!

When and how might starting with 
The story I'm telling myself is
help you in your relationships?

And how might teaching this to our children
equip and empower them as they Dare to Lead?

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