Even the word awkward is slightly awkward, don’t you think? There’s surely a word for that linguistic characteristic…
Perhaps that’s why we don’t want to be awkward? Why we don’t want others to feel awkward. Why we want to put others at their ease. Why we want them to feel comfortable. Perhaps… Yet I want you to feel slightly awkward. Not every day but probably more often than you are now. Why?
Because there is huge value in that unease. It makes all of us think. It makes all of us realise.
Because there is huge value in discomfort. The placating comfort can become a lie of complacency. Honest discomfort informs us.
I want you to feel slightly awkward perhaps more importantly because you matter to me.
It matters that I don’t withhold a truth from you because trust is what our relationship is based upon.
It matters that I demonstrate my genuine support for you because that is what I have to give you.
It matters that we challenge each other, holding that challenge gently, because that is part of how we understand ourselves and how we stretch, develop and release our potential.
Please don’t think that I’m talking random acts of kindness – I mean to be authentic & deliberate so can this can never be random. Kindness isn’t the primary driver, it’s appreciation & genuine support. Feeling slightly awkward some of the time is good for all of us.
So when I tell you how great you are, and you feel awkward, please remember that.
When I offer my genuine support and the generosity that we all have, and you feel awkward, please remember that.
When I challenge you with an apparent truth, and you feel awkward, please remember that.
And when you see me feeling awkward, please smile and remind me that being awkward some of the time is good for all of us.
Oh, and if either of us are just being awkward, then let’s say that too, holding that challenge gently.