Sounds innocent, right?
The over explaining thing.
I get it.
But lets unpack it a bit, shall we?
When you work to break free from codependency, and begin setting healthy boundaries, something as simple as over-explaining yourself can become a barrier to receiving the confidence, esteem, and self trust you need in this process.
For example, say you decided that this Thanksgiving you will be visiting with friends out of state. You called your mother to give her the heads up that you wouldn’t be home for her festive turkey dinner. As the conversation progressed, you realized that you were overly explaining yourself. You begin to go into great detail about how you never get away like this, why you really need this trip because work has been so stressful, and how you promise to make it up to her in some other way when you return.
Listen to me, friend. Pay attention to who you over explain yourself to. You may believe you are helping them understand the situation better— when in reality, you are dependent on their approval.
Their approval, you may never get.
So where does this leave you? Most likely, insecure, anxious, and feeling guilty.
This is not where you should be.
So what can you do instead?
keep the statements simple. “Mom, this year I am planning to visit with some friends for Thanksgiving out of state.”
refrain from justifying/defending your choice, while also validating what feelings they may be having. “I understand you are disappointed.”
remain kind and clear. “We fly out Wednesday and return Sunday. I would love to see you then.”
Remember, how others respond to your boundary isn’t about you. And it isn’t yours to manage.
Do you tend to over explain yourself? I’d love to hear back from you. Drop a comment.
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