You’ve created some new life goals and cannot wait to share them your family. Your family may be the first to receive the announcement about your new plans, but that doesn’t always mean they’re the most supportive. When those conversations don’t go as planned, do not take it personally.
Our emotions tend to be more complicated when it involves family. You might have a preconceived idea that family should always protect, support, and encourage you. When family doesn’t meet your ideal, you end up getting hurt.
The next time you’re about to talk to a loved one about your goals, ask yourself these three questions:
- How long has it been since I talked to this person? Before I call blurting out all of my thoughts at 60 miles an hour
- Is this person going through any hardship or emotional distress?
- Is this person generally negative or positive?
When you’re excited about a goal or plan, it can be easy to overlook the thoughts and feelings of others. You don’t really know the struggles that your parents, aunts, grandparents, and other relatives experienced in their lives. In their perspective, a cautious or cynical response to your plans could be based on good intentions.
For instance, your plan to open a business might bring up a painful memory for them. Maybe they watched someone they loved struggle and live a life of endless work with little-to-no profit.
If you don’t get the response you are looking for, ask this family member questions. You might get some tips and your relationship could get deeper too. This could also give you an opportunity to give them some positive energy on the topic.
When you reach out to family to share your goals, ask yourself why you’re choosing this particular person. Are you seeking validation from them? If so, why are you looking for approval? Why do you expect a different reaction from this person after consistently receiving negative feedback in the past?
Perhaps, you're looking for validation to improve the confidence you lack. Or maybe you see support and encouragement as signs of love.
Ask yourself these questions several times. Your first reaction might be a defensive one. Remember that these questions are not an attack on your character; this is your subconscious emotions and thoughts.
For example, you’ve determined that you’re searching for validation. Don’t stop there. Ask yourself why you hold this person to such a high standard that approval from them is valuable. Asking questions will help you dig deeper into your personal truth and emotions.
Our feelings often get hurt without a true understanding of why. And yet we expect other people to know how to act and what to say. How are they to know, if we don’t? Asking yourself the hard questions can give you a deeper understanding of what you need and want from others as well how to express those needs.
Don’t Try to Change Others
You must also look at others in these situations. There will be times when certain family members will not support your goals. They cannot be joyous for others.
You have the capability to create and manifest what you desire. You cannot control the choices of others. Some people have no desire to evolve. That’s okay. We can love others as well as detach our emotions from them.
Just as you may love a flower, you don’t get angry if it doesn’t bloom when you want. You have an understanding that it blooms on its terms. You show it love, give it water, sun, and go on with your personal activities. You don’t stand over it yelling what it must do or cry when it doesn’t listen.
Detach from your desire to bring up such topics when you’re spending time with this individual. Accept your loved ones for who they are, just as you would like them to accept you.
If your soul searching leads you to the conclusion that you just need some validation, you’re not alone. Our society places value on validation, including grades, degrees, even the citizenship. This search for validation doesn’t mean you’re a follower or that you lack confidence. Although a reminder of how to build confidence could be helpful.
Providing a perspective adjustment can also be useful. Try these mantras to guide in that process.
- Validation from self is the most powerful.
- Words from the universe are truth.
- Happiness and authenticity automatically attract support from those with understanding.
You may get support from those you least expect. When you feel alone and need support, don’t look for those connected by DNA, look for whomever the universe decides to send. We are all family.