A client has a hard conversation at work coming up, he has to give feedback to an employee that is not meeting the job requirements. There could be significant repercussions as a result of the next steps. This is very painful for my client.
My client is worried about how the employee will handle the feedback, how it will affect their relationship, etc. And, my client has an underlying energetic pattern of caretaking, of getting entangled in other people's feelings, of withholding his truth in order to maintain the peace.
(The first step we took was to look at his part of this dynamic, what needs to be healed and released in him. He has looked at, and taken responsibility for, this pattern of speaking his truth by doing a Peace Power Path process to release the family dynamic.)
And, there is a lot of muscle memory connected to how he relates in the world, habitual ways of being. In the event that this dynamic is relatable, I'm sharing an energetic perspective of the experience here.
After the Peace Power Path process we talked about the underlying energetics of the situation: that energetically this is nothing more than a mismatch. Here's what I mean by that: my client's business needs differ from the skills of the employee. There is a mismatch. That is all. This is not a moral failing on anyones part, there is no "bad guy," and there is no judgement passed on the value and worth of the other person. There is simply the recognition that, right now, there is a mismatch in what is needed and what is offered. And, in this case, that gap needs to be acknowledged and addressed.
If they were energetic puzzle pieces, they do not fit. That is all.
And yet, we fear these conversations because we take this type of feedback personally ourselves. We feel that a mismatch in any type of situation (work, personal, social, etc) reflects poorly on us, that it is a failing on our part to not be a match for a particular situation, a particular puzzle. And yet, this is energy. Energy is never personal - it just looks for yeses and nos. But we tie ourselves into knots trying to cram a fit that just isn't a fit, rather than listening to the truth in our bodies and admitting that something isn't a fit. We get attached to an agenda, to an outcome ("I want to be included, I need to keep this job, etc."), rather than participate in a conversation ("How does this experience feel in my body? This is a yes for me, is it a yes for you?")
When we override the truth in our bodies in order to maintain a situation that actually isn't a fit, we are abandoning ourselves. Betraying ourselves. We believe that not being a fit is a failing on our part, that there is something wrong with us, so we go beyond our truth in order to achieve safety on the outside by fitting in.
Except, we are only, ever, safe inside our own bodies, in our own truth. When we forget this, we look to others to give to us what we are unwilling to give to ourselves. Except...nobody can give to us on the outside what we are unwilling to give to ourselves on the inside.
And, because we override the truth in our own bodies and force ourselves past the point of truth in order to uphold an agenda, we project our fear onto others as well.
Because we take the energetics of the situation personally, for example, we take a mismatch personally (eg, we are a 'no' for someone else), we feel the mismatch is about us - that there is something wrong with us. And then, because we hold this fear ourselves, we project it onto another. So my client is feeling bad that his employee will take this feedback personally, and this conversation will make the other person feel bad. And, my client feels that he can't handle the pain of another person. He is entangled in his employees part of the equation. It is dinging his shit, that there is something wrong with him.
And underlying the fear that another can't handle a 'no,' is our own fear that we can't handle it.
We talked about how to re-interpret our experience to align with the energetics of it. To focus on being engaged and fully present with the employee during the conversation, but without being entangled. This means, take 100% responsibility for being fully embodied in your heart during the conversation, for speaking your truth, but stop at your 50% of the conversation. Stop at your boundaries, at what you have actual responsibility for. You have no right to override your boundaries, and their boundaries, in order to control their side of the experience. Recognize and give the employee the right to, and the responsibility for, their sovereignty. Give them space for their side of the experience, for their potential discomfort. (In truth, we have no idea what their experience of this situation is.)
When we trust ourselves to handle our own pain, we automatically trust everyone else to handle their own.
And so, to recap:
If this resonated, consider playing with the energetics yourself. Try this: Admit and acknowledge to yourself 10 places where something or someone in your life is not a match for you. Where you override your truth in order to protect another's feelings, in order to feel safe, etc. Big or small, it doesn't matter (it's all big when we override our truth). Take complete responsibility for your own integrity (wholeness) on the inside by correcting all 10.
Norma Van Horn