When I first started dating my guy, he told me, “Ask me what you want.”
Those were strange words to my ears.
With my former abusive husband, I was used to asking for permission, like a 10 year-old…“Can I go have lunch with my friend Carol?”
I was not used to asking to express my needs.
After 25 years of abuse, I didn’t even know what my needs were!
It wasn’t easy to ask for my needs because I had been out of practice for so long.
I was afraid if I asked for something that I wanted, I’d get yelled at, belittled or criticized for being hedonistic, as my former husband so frequently accused me of.
I discovered 3 Keys to be able to ask for your needs:
- You need to feel safe and secure to ask.
- You need to know what you want to ask.
- You need to know how to articulate that ask.
As I practiced asking not only with my guy but with others, AND I didn’t get yelled at or belittled or demeaned, I felt safer and more secure each time.
Those positive experiences gave me the confidence to continue asking.
I discovered that I had unknowing set unhealthy boundaries with my former husband.
And that I wasn’t an awful person asking for my needs and desires.
I developed processes, because it’s often easier said than done, until you learn those steps, which I outline briefly below.
- WHAT need would you like to ask for?
Take 5 minutes or so to brainstorm and let the ideas flush out.
Remember to only do ONE ask at a time.
- To whom?
Be clear who you want to ask.
- WHY do you want to ask for this need?
Spend another 5 minutes or so brainstorming your why. Your “ask” is not about being selfish, it’s about honoring yourself and expressing how you want to be treated.
It’s not about asking for things like clothes, or jewelry or expensive cars and vacations.
This is you learning to express how you want to be treated.
- Write down clearly your ask and your why.
- Practice a few times, especially if you have some fears. (There are more strategies I share about that.)
- Focus on your desire to be authentic, and ask!
- Then receive. Don’t be surprised if you find it hard to receive. You haven’t been used to receiving kindness. I’ll share more on this later. Just know that you’re not alone.
You matter. You are worthy.
Your life matters. You don’t want to spend it pleasing another person at the cost of who you are, feeling less than, not enjoying the gift of this life.
These keys were the beginning of learning to be kind to myself and to my empowerment.
To feeling authentic, to getting back to the real me, and having deeper and more fulfilling relationships, in work and in my personal life.
I not only felt like a new person, I became a new person, more empowered, confident and joyful.
It’s your time, too.
Check out blog on unhealthy relationship characteristics here.
And the blog on healthy relationship characteristics here.
Having challenges asking and learning how to receive? Take 4 minutes to get clarity on what you want and where you want to go: www.FreedomFulfillmentQuiz.com
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