How to address unpleasant topics

Address uncomfortable topics Men should finally talk about these things

There are some things you don’t talk about. But it is not always so wise. Sure: When it comes to forcing your opinion on someone, it makes sense to think twice before you do it. After all, you can’t educate anyone, and you certainly don’t want to step on anyone’s toes.

On the flip side, you’ll be stepping on your own toes if you don’t address a topic that’s important to you. Here come a few uncomfortable topics that you should address in the clarifying conversation in your family, relationship, circle of friends and job. Like? Learn!

Why should I bring up unpleasant topics?

Because you are changing a situation that you have not been able to deal with for a long time or that makes you feel bad. So bringing up a matter that is important to you can make you feel better. It can also positively affect the situation of another and improve an overall situation.

An example: You have a super buddy. However, you are embarrassed that he constantly whistles at girls in your presence. It sucks for you, but it sucks for women too. By shutting up, you keep the harmony, but otherwise it doesn’t help anyone. Another example from everyday life at work: There is this colleague who always interrupts you in meetings and won’t let you say a single sentence. It may even be your supervisor. If you keep quiet, you won’t stand out, but you’ll probably get frustrated soon.

By accepting stressful situations permanently, you’re not doing yourself any good. Life is too short to fret about things that don’t have to be.

How to address unpleasant topics

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How to address unpleasant topics

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Why people don’t like to talk about unpleasant things?

The answer is easy: fear of the consequences. In many cases, however, it is unfounded. At least, if you are addressing something that concerns you first and foremost. Often the other person is not aware that his behavior is annoying or disadvantaging others. Only by talking can a problem be uncovered and finally solved.

Sometimes the reason is fear of how the person you are talking to will react to the truth. Could the other person have a bad opinion of you afterwards? Can it negatively affect your relationship? Is the person possibly even disappointed in you?? All of these worries are normal, but they get in the way of sorting things out. Especially with these fears it is important how you bring up the subject. But more on that later. To get one step closer to talking things out, it helps to ask yourself the following questions:

  • What consequences can realistically be expected?
  • Would it be easier to continue to bear it unspoken??
  • Can I improve the overall situation by speaking up?

Whether and how you bring up a topic also depends on how much trust you have in the relationship. But often it is even easier to say something to a stranger than to raise something basic with a loved one. Here come the 4 most important social settings where you’re allowed to speak up:

1. Raise issues in the family

You would think that you can talk about anything in the family. Nonsense – everyone knows that! There is hardly any other social constellation in which there are as many secrets as in the family. Why is that? One: because you can’t choose your family members (parents, siblings, grandparents, aunts and uncles). On the other hand: because here the danger of hurting someone forever can be very high. That’s why you too may prefer to pretend the world is perfect or be grouchy at family gatherings because you don’t say what should be said.

A few examples: Your mother stubbornly serves meat every time even though you’re a vegetarian, you’ve been afraid to say you left the church for years, and your sister appoints you to babysit her offspring at every family gathering.

How you deal with it: Think carefully about what you should really bring up and what you can live with. If you bring up your mother’s food, you’re not only doing yourself a favor, but also your mother – who can better adjust to you. Explain to her that you are not questioning her cooking, but that you have your own food philosophy. As for the matter of leaving the church? It’s your business and you don’t have to account for it. Now for the babysitting job: explain to your sister that you like her offspring, but that you also want to enjoy a party with the others in peace and quiet. Suggest a compromise, if you want to be diplomatic.

In order to have a constructive conversation, you should also agree to compromises

2. Talking about problems in the relationship

The sooner you address what bothers you or what is important to you in a partnership, the better it will be. Otherwise, your partner might feel like you’ve just walked in the door. Of course, you should already have a relationship of trust. By the way, a relationship can only get better if you talk about unpleasant things, too. It’s not about always agreeing with each other. Compromise and consideration are part of a stable and happy partnership.

Here are some examples as well: It bothers you that your partner spends so much time with her best buddy. You want more variety in bed. Your partner often complains that you spend a lot of time at the gym.

How you handle it: Also in your partnership you should think about what you can accept and what really bothers you so much that it affects your relationship. As for your girlfriend’s best friend: if he was there before you, you’ll have to accept him willy-nilly. It just also contributes to your partner’s happiness, but it’s not competition. If it gives you no peace, you should not reproach her, but tell her how you feel about the situation. So she may see things from a point of view she was not aware of before.

Let’s get to the sex: Here, conversations can definitely be a gamechanger. In a relaxed atmosphere, ask if there’s anything else she’d like to try in bed, and take the opportunity to bring up your fantasies and needs as well.

How to address unpleasant topics

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As far as sports are concerned: You can put up with the complaining and always be in a bad mood during sports because of it, or you can stop doing sports. If neither is an option, you should definitely bring up the subject. Explain to her why exercise is so important to you. If she knows why you’re doing something, it’s easier for her to understand it. After all, you don’t forbid her the things that are good for her either.

3. How to speak plainly to your friends

In the best case you have such a relationship with your friends that you can tell each other to your face when something doesn’t fit. And without anyone being offended. Still, there are things that many men don’t like to talk about among mates.

These topics, for example: Whenever you go out with your buddy, he disappears without a trace. Your boyfriend constantly forces others to drink alcohol. The guy often cancels appointments at the last minute or is constantly late.

How you deal with it: The advantage of a conversation between friends is that you can wrap up a topic in a funny way. The disadvantage is that your problem can be taken as a joke. So it’s important that you sell it seriously. Even if "We need to talk Isn’t one of the phrases you usually drop in a friendship.

As for the buddy, Who regularly disappears into thin air when you leave: Ask him if he has actually noticed this himself before. Maybe an agreement that you will separate sometime in the evening will also help. This way, you are not put on the spot when he is suddenly gone and he can do whatever he wants.

A conversation can change a lot for the better

Let’s move on to the friend, Who wants to persuade others to drink alcohol. Many people do not find it easy to resist peer pressure. It is brave if you point out to your friend that the others can decide for themselves and perhaps open his eyes. But you’re not responsible for them either. As long as you don’t let yourself be persuaded, you could also quietly tolerate this quirk of your buddy.

If it annoys you that your buddy always cancels, you have to open your mouth. However, you should not point out his misconduct, but ask him if he simply does not feel like or has little time for a meeting at the moment. Usually there is no malicious intent behind it and you start a conversation that can only enhance your friendship.

4. Here’s how to address things on the job

Most people spend an average of 40 hours a week at work. That’s quite a lot of life if you’re constantly annoyed. Reason enough to bring up issues that make your working life unbearable. The fears: you could ruin the cohesion between colleagues or upset the boss. But again, ideally, talking things out can actually improve the work environment.

Examples from everyday life on the job: You’ve been getting the same salary for years and you’re not getting ahead, but younger colleagues are constantly being promoted and paid better. The colleague snatches up the best vacation days at the beginning of the year. The colleague constantly talks loudly in the coffee kitchen.

How you deal with it: Of course, it’s annoying when your colleagues pass you by in a hurry on the career ladder and you’re stuck on the bottom rung. Time to ask yourself what that’s all about. Probably because the colleagues say what they want to the boss. As a rule, it is of little use to wait for your superior to reward you for your efforts. In the conversation with him, you should not compare yourself with other colleagues, but emphasize your strengths and justify why you deserve more salary. Don’t worry: It’s not begging, it’s showing the boss that you’re good at assessing your value to the company.

As for the overzealous colleague: Maybe he wasn’t aware that you felt set back by his early vacation planning. If his schedule conflicts with yours, you should bring it up with him directly or as part of the team (don’t run to the supervisor right away). One thing is certain: other colleagues will also benefit if you ask the colleague to find a solution as a team.

The blasphemous colleague It’s about as hard to confront a sweaty colleague about his or her body odor. You don’t like to point out bad behavior or lack of personal hygiene to people. That’s why there’s not much you can do here, except to avoid the colleague or ask her to speak a little more quietly if it disturbs your concentrated work.

How to address an uncomfortable topic?

Regardless of the situation or the person, the general question is how to approach such a conversation. Here come the most important tips:

  • Gestures are useless: There is a problem, that’s why it doesn’t help if you make innuendos or use gestures (z.B. Raised eyebrow, annoyed answer etc.) try to make a difference. These usually only lead to misunderstandings anyway. You should bring up the subject.
  • Do not put off the conversation: The longer you wait, the more likely it is that you will accumulate negative emotions and the behavior will become ingrained in the counterpart. If you are already on the verge of insanity, you can hardly hold a factual conversation any more. In addition, it is more difficult for the other person to change a behavior that was apparently always okay for you before
  • Catch the right moment: Don’t bring up the subject if you’re totally annoyed by it right now. Wait a moment when you and the person you are talking to are not under pressure. You should talk in private.
  • Refrain from accusations: Explain to your counterpart that the topic is not easy for you and start with, for example, "Maybe you didn’t notice it . ". Package the topic as gently and positively as possible.
  • Send "I" messages: Explain exactly how you feel about a situation and what would have to change to make you feel better. Do not focus on the other person’s misbehavior, but on your feelings.
  • Let your counterpart react: Perhaps your conversation partner is blindsided, perhaps he remains completely relaxed. You should give him or her the opportunity to ask questions or explain themselves. Sometimes it helps to sleep on it for a night and then talk again.

Conclusion: A conversation can change a lot for the better

Usually the fear of bringing up a subject is great. The negative consequence, if you really do it, will be bearable. Through a conversation you can change a lot for the better. The important thing is: In order to have a constructive conversation, you should also accept compromises. Because you can also learn a lot from your counterpart in such a discussion and change yourself. In addition, an honest conversation will enable you to deal openly with each other in the future.

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