Let Go of the Need to Explain
What is it that drives us to explain ourselves to other people all the time? The minute you stop explaining you can get on with doing and being what it is that you choose.
By all means elicit opinions and ideas, brainstorm and get feedback, but stop explaining yourself. If someone asks you the reason you are doing something, find out what the information is going to give them – that throws the ball back in their court. You can then choose to respond or not. Most likely you will by this time have ascertained what the underlying reason for the question was and not what you presumed it might be!
Are you explaining yourself because you felt guilty that you didn’t do it sufficiently well? Is it because someone might disapprove? Is it to make an excuse?
Before you make a decision think what the consequences could be. Weigh it up and then choose and own what you’ve chosen.
I’ve got a very close friend who I used to go shopping with. In the changing rooms as we tried on all sorts of different items of clothing, she’d be saying things like
- ‘Oh that’s perfect, it’ll go with your (and name half a dozen items in my wardrobe)’
- ‘You can wear that at the dinner party, the office, and even to walk the dog (she did have a vivid imagination!)’
- That colour goes with red, orange, yellow, purple, green, blue, tangerine, white, black and navy – it’s a must! (Colour blind too)
Justification was not what I needed or wanted, if I was going to buy something then I would buy it without having to have a string of reasons excuses to do so.
- Oh I only had a salad at lunch
- I’ll skip lunch all next week
- I’ve been good all week
For heaven’s sake, either eat it or don’t … you’re the only one who can hold yourself accountable to a decision you’ve made.
When you let go of the need to explain you will find that your head stops being filled with all those noisy voices shouting ‘what if” at you. The peace is measurable – give it a go today and tomorrow and then let me know how you got on!