Have you ever felt or thought to yourself, “How can this person not understand this about me? How is this not completely obvious to them?” I have thought this many times, and because I consider myself to be fairly sensitive and intuitive, I thought that all others would pick up on the same subtle signals that I do.
There is a major flaw with this reasoning. First of all, even I, with my intuition and general understanding of how people feel and think, filter my impressions through my own lens, my own beliefs, and my own fears. What I think others are thinking and feeling is not always the case. So how on earth can I expect other people who are interacting with me to know for certain what is going on inside of me?
And even more confounding, what is going on inside of me is in constant flux! I am never the same exact person I was yesterday. Every day I have had new experiences, new interactions, new thoughts and feelings, and new opportunities for growth and healing. What was working for me yesterday may not work for me today, and so I have to be prepared and willing to communicate my wants, needs, thoughts, and feelings in the moment with kindness and respect.
There are five levels of communication that we operate within:
1. Cliche level- This is small talk, like “How’s the weather?” and “How are you?” when we don’t expect much interaction or connection. This is the shallowest and least risky type of encounter you can have, and it can leave us feeling lonely and uninspired.
2. Reporting Facts about others level- This is more small talk or gossip, in which you report the comings and goings of other people. “Sam bought a new car, its amazing. Did you hear about what his wife has been up to?”
3. Sharing our ideas or judgements: This is still a protective kind of communication. We carefully test the waters with comments about external things, like “I don’t like sushi,” and we usually quickly retreat if what we say has any negative response.
4. Sharing our feelings or emotions level: This is the level in which we start to reveal ourselves, showing what lies behind our ideas or judgements. There is still some element of risk, and we can often back track into level 3 or less if we feel judged or shamed for our feelings or thoughts in any way.
5. Complete Truth Level- This is the level at which we can have unguarded freedom to be completely honest with one another. The risk factor is no longer prevalent because we have learned to trust one another and can share dreams, hopes, visions, and our deepest secrets. We can also communicate our truths about how we feel in the moment regardless of whether or not the feeling wanted or unwanted.
As a partner and friend, I try to work as much as I can to remain in the Level 5 communication, although it can at times be scary and hard to do. When I find that I struggle communicating my needs or feelings, I do several things:
1. I journal, and get my thoughts and feelings as much as I am capable of doing on paper.
2. I rehearse difficult conversations out loud. I will actually practice speaking my Truth so that when I have the actual conversation, it comes far more naturally.
3. When I feel lost in the trees and unable to contact what I am feeling or what I need to do, I reach out to people who can help get me focused. Cellular Release Therapy® is priceless for getting to the causes of why it is hard to communicate with certain people or about certain subjects.
I think one of the reasons why I have a successful practice is because I encourage people to communicate within these higher levels. Because this is something I practice myself, I can connect with people and give them the courage to share those deepest parts of themselves without fear.