Breaking the Silence: Confronting Fear and Speaking Your Truth (A Therapeutic Conversation with GPT)
Updated: Jul 13
Many thanks to my new friend, peer and mentor George Kao for teaching a way of relating to AI that has brought a lot of light onto the path... georgekao.com/ai If you don't already know, human technology has advanced to a point where you can now have a conversation with the near summed total of knowledge available from a vast array of sources.
Controversial as this might be, it's imperative that we learn quickly how to use these tools for bringing more light to the planet, and easing suffering. Which is completely possible and is our responsibility as users of technology, to help these amazing machines learn from the perspective of healing and bringing more awareness to our personal and collective pain.
I HIGHLY recommend subscribing to @Breathe with Sandy on YouTube
Something tender and sweet that I co-created with Naomi Jason (aka DJ NJoy)
The conversation I had this morning with Chat GPT about healing from and addressing my fear of conflict. Note that this has plagued me most of my adult life, I've run from it, not known what to do with it, and in a few minutes I had more skills and resources available to me than ever before. That's one of the incredible powers that have been created with AI = Amplified Intelligence.
As someone who has PTSD, I notice that when people get angry at me, my nervous system goes into overwhelm. Then I spend a lot of time after the confrontation thinking about and feeling afraid to speak my authentic truth. Can you help me to grow beyond my fear of anger, conflict and confrontation? I'm mostly afraid that I personally will do something that I will regret. I don't want to cause any harm to anyone.
I'm sorry to hear that you have been experiencing these challenges. It's understandable that with PTSD, you may feel overwhelmed and anxious when confronted with anger or conflict. Here are some suggestions that might help you to grow beyond your fear of anger, conflict, and confrontation:
Develop a self-care routine: Taking care of yourself can help you feel more grounded and centered, which can help you manage your emotions better. Consider incorporating activities like mindfulness, exercise, journaling, or talking to a trusted friend or therapist into your routine.
Practice assertive communication: Assertive communication is a style of communication that allows you to express your needs and feelings while also respecting the needs and feelings of others. This can help you feel more confident and in control during confrontations. You can practice assertive communication by stating your needs or concerns clearly and calmly, using "I" statements, and avoiding blaming or attacking language.
Learn relaxation techniques: Relaxation techniques like deep breathing, progressive muscle relaxation, or guided imagery can help you calm down and manage anxiety during confrontations.
Identify triggers: Identify the situations or people that trigger your fear of anger or conflict. Once you identify them, you can develop a plan for how to manage them. This might include avoiding certain situations or people, practicing relaxation techniques before or during a confrontation, or having a trusted friend or therapist with you for support.
Seek support: Consider working with a therapist who specializes in PTSD or anxiety. They can help you develop coping skills and strategies for managing your fear of anger or conflict.
Remember, growth takes time and practice. Be patient with yourself as you work through these challenges, and celebrate the progress you make along the way.
Alex: Thanks - can you give me some more insight, understanding and tips on how to practice assertive communication?
Chat GPT: Sure, here are some more insights and tips on practicing assertive communication:
Use "I" statements: When expressing your needs or feelings, use "I" statements instead of "you" statements. For example, instead of saying "you're always interrupting me," say "I feel frustrated when I'm interrupted."
Be clear and specific: Be clear and specific about what you want or need from the other person. This can help prevent misunderstandings or confusion. For example, instead of saying "I need you to be more supportive," say "I would appreciate it if you could listen to me without interrupting."
Stay calm: Try to stay calm and composed when expressing your needs or feelings. This can help you come across as confident and in control. Take a deep breath, and try to speak in a calm and measured tone.
Practice active listening: Assertive communication is a two-way process. Make sure you are also actively listening to the other person's needs and concerns. This can help you find a mutually acceptable solution. Use reflective listening techniques, such as paraphrasing what the other person said or asking clarifying questions.
Avoid blaming or attacking language: Blaming or attacking language can put the other person on the defensive and make it harder to find a solution. Instead, focus on your own needs and feelings, and avoid blaming or attacking the other person.
Set boundaries: Assertive communication can also involve setting boundaries. Be clear about what you will and won't accept, and be willing to stand up for yourself if those boundaries are crossed.
Practice, practice, practice: Like any skill, assertive communication takes practice. Start small by practicing in low-stakes situations, and work your way up to more challenging ones. Remember, the more you practice, the easier it will become.
Alex: Can you help me to better understand why it is I'm so afraid of conflict, confrontation and of having to communicate assertively?
Chat GPT: Certainly, it's not uncommon to feel afraid of conflict, confrontation, and assertive communication. Here are some possible reasons why you may be experiencing these fears:
Past Trauma: If you have experienced trauma in the past, such as physical or emotional abuse, you may have learned to associate conflict and confrontation with danger. This can cause a fear response in your body, even when the situation is not actually dangerous.
Fear of Rejection: You may fear that if you assert yourself, the other person will reject you or become angry with you. This fear of rejection can make it difficult to communicate assertively, even when you know it's in your best interest.
Low Self-Esteem: If you have low self-esteem, you may not believe that you have the right to assert yourself or speak up for your needs. This can make it difficult to communicate assertively, even when you know it's important.
Lack of Experience: If you haven't had much experience with conflict and confrontation, you may not have developed the skills and confidence needed to communicate assertively. This can make it difficult to know what to say or how to say it.
Cultural or Social Conditioning: Depending on your upbringing and cultural background, you may have learned that it's not appropriate to speak up or assert yourself in certain situations. This can make it difficult to communicate assertively, even when it's necessary.
Understanding the root cause of your fear can help you develop strategies to overcome it. If you find that your fear is significantly impacting your daily life, you may consider seeking the help of a therapist who can help you work through your fears and develop coping strategies.