Confrontation must come from the heart. To open a confrontation, we must express how we feel. And we must avoid the temptation to replace feelings with verbs.
“I felt ambushed.” = “I felt that you ambushed me.” = You ambushed me.
“I felt bait and switched.” = “I felt that you bait and switched me.” = “You bait and switched me.”
These are stories, not feelings. What’s more, they are stories of accusation. And they are small “s” stories – dramas sourced in the mind that we make up to explain our emotions to ourselves, as opposed to Story, which is sourced in the mythical and is the dharma that explains everything in reality.
“I felt overwhelmed.”
These are feelings. They open space for a heart connection. Heart connection is an essential component of a successful confrontation – it creates the container.
Bigger than that – heart connection is the IT of confrontation. Why are we in a confrontation? If it is the “positive kind”, it is to strengthen and expand the container of the relationship. If it is the “negative kind” it is because the container of the relationship needs attention – it has been breached or destabilized or torn or wounded or crossed. And so confrontation is to nourish and stabilize the relationship.