This post is a continuation of Stepping Up to Difficult Conversations: What My Grad Students Taught Me. What I’m about to write will make more sense if you read that first!
I asked my grad students what their greatest fears were before having the difficult conversations they’d chosen. They named the kinds of fears you and I would probably name, too:
- I feared it wasn’t the "right" time to have the conversation.
- I feared I’d be found out for who I really am.
- I was afraid I might resort to some of my more rageful ways.
- I worried that it would backfire and make things worse.
- I was afraid the other person would get angry at me.
- I feared retribution or other consequences at work.
- I was afraid I wouldn’t handle myself well.
- I was afraid I wouldn’t have the strength to see it through.
Then I asked them what their greatest hopes were. I’ll write about their answers next.
The next post in this short series is Stepping Up to Difficult Conversations: Know Your Strongest Hopes.
So inspired by these students.