Self-expression is a way to convey your emotions and needs, taking into account the emotions and needs of another person. Why is it important for everyone to talk about their emotions and needs, says the specialist of the Psychological Center:
Our emotions are an important signal of our inner world. Behind every emotion there is a need – what we would like and what is important to us. When we talk about our emotions and needs, we give them meaning and let the other person know what is happening to us, how we feel, how to be in a relationship with us. This gives space for dialogue, agreement and building the desired relationship.
At the same time, the communication partner also has feelings and needs that are important to respect. And the self-message provides an opportunity to speak about our feelings with respect, without resorting to judgments, accusations and devaluation.
How is the self-statement constructed?
I-statement includes several components:
1. Fact – a situation or action of another person that caused an emotional reaction (invaluable here).
2. Feelings – emotions that arose in response to situations (remember that the actions of others are a stimulus to our feelings, but not their cause).
3. Explanation – why these emotions arose, what need was met.
4. Desire – an acceptable option for you to develop the situation.
5. Call for discussion of the situation. ⠀
The construction of the self-statement is as follows:
“When (you name a situation or an action), I feel (you call an emotion) because it’s important to me (you name a value or a need). I would like to (name the desired scenario).
Example: “When you abruptly interrupted our phone call yesterday, I felt angry and frustrated because our calls and the opportunity to talk to you are so important to me. I would like you to take the time next time to end our conversation in a quality way. What do you think about that? ”
What is needed to develop the skill of “I-expression”:
Be able to recognize your emotions
Expand your emotional vocabulary
Be able to recognize the needs behind the feelings
Be able to listen to yourself and others
Developing the self-message skill takes time and effort. But it is worth it – by expressing our feelings and needs, we increase the chance that they will be satisfied.