Why "I'm worried about you" might SUCK to say to someone
"I'm worried about you."
It's a nice sounding phrase. It shows that someone is thinking about you. It implies caring. A true concern. Truly.
But there's a reason why this phrase may actually make a person feel worse, versus better.
First off, when any of us are going though something hard or difficult or painful, we often need less of the load that we may be carrying. When things feel tough we usually look to find the light in the darkness to....well...feel lighter, regardless of whatever process we are taking to try to get there.
We look for the burden to be lifted.
Think about a time when things felt heavy for you. Bleak or dark. Hard.
What did you most need in that moment?
Someone to say "I'm worried about you"....?
Let's say someone you care about is going through something and you tell them, "I'm worried about you." You just made their issue about you. Think about this...or rather....feel about it. You literally started a response with "I'm" automatically making their issues about how you are sitting with it. What it is doing to you. Their issue has you worried and you wanted them to know. The person you care about....however small, may feel responsible about making you feel better about their issue since you just told them you have been affected. When this happens, you may have just added a little more to the load they are carrying. Put more of a burden on them because of your worries. Not only are they going through something, but now you are worrying about it too, and added to their possible worry.
There's a bit of a controlling aspect in "worry." Worrying is the brain thinking that things should be different than they are. Worrying is our minds trying to find a solution. Our brains trying to control things for the outcome we think should happen.
Of course we worry if we try to control how we think things should turn out!
Where's the trust in the process?
Where's the belief in that we or they should be going through this for greater growth?
How do we let someone properly heal without trying to control it or interfere with it?
Worry is just often taking the past to think through to a future scenario, versus being with the person right now. Right here. New expansion is trying to happen since what they're going through...is happening anyway.
You can't be off and running in your brain looking for a solution or creating false outcomes to "worry" about and be with someone at the same time. You can feel hurt, anger, sadness and pain for them...without the worry.
"I'm worried about you" sometimes is a caring version of "make me feel better about what you're going through so I don't have to worry."
It's not about you.
True connection and strength is being with them.
The next time someone you love or care for is going through something (and they will...we all will)...feel the powerful and light, strong trust in these alternative responses:
"I'm here. What can I do?"
"We're together in this if you need me."
"How can I help?"
"What is it that you need right now?"
As humans, we can't sniff each other's pee for information the way a dog can (if you are able to do this, that's amazing and a slightly creepy talent). We can't bat our wings to communicate like bees do. As humans, we have our words and we all should try to be as responsible as we can with them.
"Im worried about you" may sound like it comes from a place of help when...you may have just added a tiny little layer onto the "thing" that someone is going through.
If you are going to make it about you, can you at least ask yourself "can I trust that what is happening is for the greater growth of this person I love and care about?"
Then the question "what do you need from me?" allows the openness of you believing that what they are going through is okay and that you are here to help.
Not take them on.
Not giving them more to take on.
Not control it.
Not worry about it.
And worrying....is a damn waste of time and connection. *Download my human experience audio series "Now. Secrets of a Lifecoach" on Amazon or iTunes for more stories. This is THE human experience soundtrack.