We are so attached to what the other person think that it is easy to agree to do something you do not want to do. Another reason to ignore our own feelings is a fear of someone’s anger. We all have triggers from the past; too many people avoid anger because it brings back a memory best forgotten.

I was teaching a workshop in the Idaho mountains to teenagers, presenting ideas and skills to help them navigate the teen years. Lack of awareness is the same as no choice! (Read that again!) We need to train our children to successfully deal with the challenges of their youth.

Someone asks you to lie to help them. “I’m not comfortable with that idea.” Someone asks you change your mind about staying out after curfew. “I’m not comfortable with that idea.” Someone has a cigarette and wants you to smoke it with them. “I’m not comfortable with that idea.” Someone says something that could be taken two ways. “I’m not comfortable with what you just said, could you explain, please.” Someone is driving radically because they’ve been drinking. “Pull over right now! I’m not comfortable riding with you when you’re not sober.”

We are masters at making up excuses, fudging on what we say, doing what we don’t want to do. There’s not much the other person can say to “I’m not comfortable with…” Just repeat your sentence until the other person realizes you are holding the line.

When you do something you don’t want to do, resentment begins building a wall between you and someone else. The anger, resentment, revenge cycle builds with other personal compromises, and finally explodes. Head off, resentments with, “I’m not comfortable with that.”

Please share with friends and family!

Scott A. McDaniel photo