Often, when we communicate with loved ones, we express our emotions and feelings in a way that can hurt other people. We don’t always even think about what our words can hurt. Psychologist and art therapist says that there are typical toxic phrases that should sound differently.
Do what you want, I wanted the best
I respect your choice and wanted to share an experience that might be useful. I want you to avoid disappointment, because you are important to me.
You’ll give me a heart attack
You are important to me and I worry about you, so your actions cause me a lot of worries, because I am not sure that everything will be okay. I want you to be okay.
I heard you
I have a lot of negative emotions, but now I am not ready for a constructive dialogue, and I do not want to start a conflict.
I could write / call myself
I would be glad if you wrote. That’s how I feel important and meaningful to you.
I thought you would say that
I am saddened by this reaction to my story. I need your help/support in this situation.
How did you come up with that?
I am fascinated by your creativity, I could not even imagine what could be done in such a way.
What you are going through is nonsense
I am sorry that this situation caused you negative experiences. How can I support you?
It’s easy to paraphrase toxic phrases into ecological ones. It is enough to speak through I-messages, which are formulated as follows: 1. Description of your feelings, which were caused by the words or the situation. 2. Description of what you would like. It is worth trying to talk without accusations, only about yourself and your experiences. So there will be fewer conflicts, and more understanding in the relationship.