My Life with God

Avoiding Contact

photo-1456526921702-fa7873ea028fSome people avoid significant contact with others in order to avoid sharing feelings and authentically doing life together. The distance they set between themselves and others can damage their relationships and themselves. They bump up against each other but go no deeper and minimize the influence on and investment in each other.

Other people find it easier to avoid sharing authentic feelings by manipulating others. As personal as it feels on the receiving end, the manipulator gets close enough to lash out but only long enough to doll out intimidation. They give but do not receive. They project but do not reflect. They rationalize but do not apologize. They see things their way and usually want everyone else to see things their way as well.

And it hurts.

You don’t have to do life authentically with others. But if you don’t, you (and the people around you) are missing out. Know your go-to approach, and be willing to grow beyond it. Also be aware of the approach of many around you. Notice patterns. Choose healthy next steps. Be willing to improve, which means holding yourself and others accountable to higher relational standards. Some people, including you, might squirm a bit, but the wiggles are worth it.

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