top of page

HOW TO TELL SOMEONE THEY HURT YOU WITHOUT RUINING THE RELATIONSHIP

Telling someone how you feel about what they did is uncomfortable but healthier than holding your anger inside. If you share what you feel with the intention to improve the relationship, not to punish back, you will be heard.


Here are 4 steps for doing so effectively:


1. Start with "Why".

“I would like to share something with you because I value our relationship.” Or at work, you might say, “I know that us working well together will help us both reach our goals. Can I share something that could improve our collaboration?”


2. Briefly describe what happened that felt hurtful.

Don’t go into a long story or try to soften the blow by saying you know they didn’t mean to be offensive. One sentence that describes your experience of their behavior is enough. The other person might interrupt you to explain themselves. Tell them calmly you want to hear what they have to say, but you'd like to finish first.


3. Say how their behavior made you feel.

They can’t debate your feelings. Use “I” statements. Don’t blame them for being insensitive. This is how you feel when they act this way regardless of their intentions.


4. Say what you need going forward.

What would you like them to do instead? Be specific, offer an example. Then accept their response. They may need time to process what you shared


1 view0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

We hear the word balance all the time. Particularly, in the context of work-life balance. To achieve balance, in the literal sense, would mean to spend equal amounts of time on the different activitie

You’re sitting at your desk as the clock ticks toward 6 pm. There’s a half-full, lukewarm coffee and a blinking cursor on the computer screen in front of you. As you get ready to call it a day, you th

I often hear judgements about someone "shamelessly" self-promoting. I don't get the concept of shameless self-promotion. The phrase presumes that self-promotion is normally shameful. Here’s the thing:

bottom of page