I don’t usually do personal posts but over the past couple of weeks I’ve been thinking a lot about one particular question:
If someone asks you if you’re OK, what’s your first response?
a) “I’m fine” even if you’re not
b) Be honest
For some reason, I always seem to choose option A. Alright, so this seems understandable if you’re speaking to people you don’t know well or in a situation such as work where you may feel the need to present a certain appearance. The thing is, after a while you end up responding the same way even with family and friends as well.
Personally I find it quite easy to put on the front that everything is alright, even if in reality all I want to do is run away and hide/cry in a dark corner. The problem is, while you may be smiling and happy on the outside, inside you feel so unhappy and upset that you don’t know what to do or how to explain it. You go on, feeling as though all you want to do is give up but if everyone asks that question above it’s option A every time.
I understand that maybe people feel they don’t want to be seen as negative or vulnerable. However there’s a danger, at least for me, that you can end up feeling alone and isolated because no-one knows how you really feel. Then you continue to get more upset and down, and it gets even harder to face the prospect of being honest with other people.
Maybe it’s time to find a compromise. At work there’s a need for me to be professional and in control, so it’s easier to convey that when I do put on something of a front emotionally. However when I talk to people I trust, at home or with friends, try opening up more. Speaking from experience, I know how hard it can be to be vulnerable but I also know that it’s OK to be that way. It’s definitely alright to tell someone when you’re as far from OK as you can get.