Not Expressing Your Emotions is Dishonest

October 13, 2023

The only thing more painful than brutal honesty is dishonesty. If we’re holding in our true emotions to avoid tough conversations, judgment or rocking the boat, we’re actually hurting our relationship more than helping it.

Expressing how you are feeling is where trust is built and where relationships thrive. If you’re not being truly honest in your relationship, it will disintegrate over time, guaranteed.

Honesty can be a tough pill to swallow. But the foundation of trust that comes with expressing your emotions is one of the most important parts of building a deep, loving and lasting relationship.

In this episode, we’re talking about:

  • When we say we’re fine, but we’re not
  • Why we’re often afraid to be honest
  • How to build trust in a relationship
  • How to handle when they overstep your boundaries
  • The link between dishonesty and infidelity
  • Projecting onto someone vs expressing how you’re genuinely feeling
  • Why relationship skills need to be practiced
  • How to better connect with people
  • Why honesty is often a breakthrough moment for relationships

Honesty in a relationship can be a difficult road to navigate. I hear this from clients all the time. If you want help with how to have that truly honest conversation you’ve been fearing, please reach out – I have private coaching opportunities available now. Email me or DM me on Instagram @emilygoughcoach


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Episode 306 | Changing How We Define Emotional Strength & Recognizing Emotions As Data


 Expressing how you are feeling is where relationships can thrive because without it, relationships will disintegrate over time. If you sweep things under the rug, if you avoid the hard conversations, if you pretend that you’re fine when you’re not, if you don’t say the things that need to be said, your relationship will disintegrate.

It is only a matter of time.

I’m Emily Gough, a human connection coach, writer and speaker with an insatiable sense of curiosity and adventure. Always asking more questions and using the power of stories to teach, learn, and grow. We boldly explore relationships, connection, and the nuances and complexities of the human experience with compassion, honesty, and a sense of humor.

With both solo episodes and highly curated guests sharing incredible stories, experiences, and expertise, the Room to Grow™ podcast takes the entire idea of growth to the next level. All while covering the uncomfortable topics, many of us would like to avoid. There’s always more room to grow. Let’s do this.

Hey, hey, welcome back to the room to grow podcast Emily here. And today I want to share with you a breakthrough that a client of mine had this morning. And I felt that it was just too important to share because this is a really big one that comes up in relationships a lot. And it’s when we say we’re fine, and we’re fucking not.

We pretend to be fine. To keep the peace, uh, so that people won’t judge us, so that we won’t hurt anyone’s feelings, um, so that we can avoid the hard conversations, so that we, we can still be seen as nice and kind, and, um, you know, the, the good person, and don’t rock the boat, and all of these things. And it’s actually incredibly dishonest.

It is incredibly dishonest. And the people that I work with, and I’m, I’m sure that you can probably relate, consider themselves to be honest people. And I had this same breakthrough, and I sometimes still have to have this breakthrough over and over again, sometimes, where I always identified as a really honest.

person, but I was often in relationships, keeping the way that I felt that I really felt to myself to try and protect the other person’s feelings. And when that happens, it means that first of all, we don’t trust the other person to be able to handle whatever it is we’re really thinking. It means that we don’t trust the connection to be able to withstand.

Our actual opinion being shared and it means that the other person can’t fully trust you either because we are keeping something from them from them in a lot of ways we are we are manipulating their reality and we’re not allowing them to have the full Full experience. We are denying them the full experience of us and the full experience that could be possible in that relationship if you actually showed up as your truest self.

And I know how scary that is. I, I know how scary that is and to allow ourselves to be seen to show our more vulnerable sides to maybe show our wounding, um, to show the pieces of us that we, that we protect because those parts of you have likely been hurt before. So it makes sense. I understand. Trust me.

I understand. Again, been there, been there. And sometimes I still have to have this conversation with myself that like, okay, if I’m going to choose to not rock the boat and to not say the thing that I need to say, that I want to say to express a genuine feeling that I am experiencing, that means that I’m not.

Showing up with my core value of integrity and honesty. And this is why it’s really important to get clear on your core values and to ask yourself if you are truly embodying them. And this applies to all different areas of our lives. Like we can’t be honest in one area and wildly dishonest in another, and still believe that we’re living up to our core value system.

So if honesty and integrity are some of your core values, you have to look at all of the areas. Of honesty and integrity. Are you being honest with yourself? Are you being honest with the other people in your life? Are you showing up in an honest and genuine way and in your full integrity in every area?

Because otherwise it creates these energetic leaks that bleed into other, other areas of our lives. And when we say we’re fine, but we’re actually not. We are not being honest, and this is what I want you to understand the most. Expressing is where trust can grow. Expressing how you are feeling is where relationships can thrive, because without it, relationships will disintegrate over time.

I, I can guarantee few things in life, but that is one of the things I can guarantee that if you do not, if you sweep things under the rug, if you avoid the hard conversations, if you pretend that you’re fine when you’re not, if you, if you don’t say the things that need to be said, your relationship will disintegrate.

It is only a matter of time. The other interesting part to that is that when we don’t say the thing that we want to say, and we instead, we let it go. It starts to build a map to create the story of who we believe the other person to be, whether that’s true or not, but you’re not giving them an opportunity to share a different perspective.

Instead, you’re operating off the assumption and the distrustful perspective that they won’t be able to handle what you have to say or that they will react a particular way. You are, you’re denying them and yourself and the relational entity the full experience. And you’re not trusting them to show up in a way that might surprise you for the better.

And to actually allow trust to grow. When we don’t say the things that we need to say, when we don’t express ourselves, when we don’t express a boundary, for example, it blocks the flow of love and energy and connection. When I was speaking to my client this morning, I said, you know, I’m almost picturing you with, with this, this big.

Black wall around you and inside the wall is you and this flurry of, of, you know, different emotions that you are experiencing and outside of the wall are all the people that you want to connect with. And there’s no way for the love and the energy to flow because it’s being blocked by the wall. Like if someone feels anger towards you because you, you crossed a boundary of theirs and they express it to you, you might not like it, but at least they’re being honest and you can feel that.

You can feel when that comes from a genuine place. Another example is, uh, infidelity. You know, I, I, I talk to a lot of, uh, clients who have experienced, um, infidelity and, and, you know, various betrayals and, and stuff like that in their relationships from various angles. And the one thing that is always constant with that, and it’s the thing that hurts the most, is when something goes on behind our backs that we don’t know about because the other person didn’t express it.

And you having an emotional experience and completely denying the other person even the opportunity to hear that, to learn that part about you. I’m not saying that there aren’t moments where like, yeah, sometimes you need to go like, like to own what’s yours, not project it onto the other person and deal with your shit.

But there’s a difference between not projecting onto somebody else and actually just expressing how you are very genuinely feeling. There is a big difference. Not everyone is going to be able to handle your emotions. Not everyone is, and that is the scary part. There is very real fear under this. I get it.

I absolutely get it. Think about learning to play the piano, okay? Or even, you know, learning to swim. First of all, you’re not going to be good at it the first time. You’re just not. Anyone who has never played piano or never gotten in a pool before is not going to be great at it the first time they do it.

The other option, perhaps, could be if you just read about how to play the piano or how to swim. In books, you learn all the theory that you possibly can. Every book under the sun, you read all the things. You learn all the theory. But you never actually touch a piano. Or you never actually touch water. Do you really know how to swim?

Do you really know how to play the piano? Just because you’ve read all the theory… Do you actually know how to use those skills? I mean, and I’m being really honest here, like, it seems absurd when we frame it that way. You know, if you read all the books about how to swim, you assume that you can swim even if you’ve never touched water.

Probably not. In fact, I can’t, I can’t, I can guarantee very few things, but I highly doubt that someone who reads all of the books about how to swim is going to get into a pool and do super well. Right? And, and the same applies to relationships. You can be out there reading all the relationship books, you know, Brene Brown, taking courses, all the things.

But if you’re never actually practicing what you learn and never taking the messy action to have the hard conversations, you’re not learning as much as you think you are. Because the real growth happens in relationship. Relational skills have to be practiced. And I’m not just talking about romantic relationships here.

Because you can practice the skills, like practice relational skills, in any relationship. At work, at home, um, you know, with your friends, your other loved ones. There are so many ways, there are endless opportunities to practice these skills. So, if you don’t have a partner, I’m not saying… That you have to have a partner because that’s the only, it’s not that at all.

Relational skills translate in different areas. And during, you know, the pandemic in particular, many of us got out of practice in some social, social scenarios and, and out of practice with some of our social skills. I remember the first time I was at a large gathering of people after the pandemic. I remember having this moment of like, I don’t know where to put my hands.

Because it just, I just felt so awkward. And it was because I hadn’t, I was, I was trying to think back. I was like, what did, how did I used to stand? How did I like talk? There was just so bizarre. And that’s the thing is that when we have these skills, but we never use them, or if we only ever learn the theory.

And we never apply them, we’re going to have a much harder time. The only way to get better at this is to get in there, to get in there and do the thing. And yes, this is so scary. This is so scary because we cannot control or even predict the other person’s reaction. But there is such inherent relief that comes from someone’s honest expression.

And for all parties, again, even if the reaction isn’t great. At least they’re being honest, or at least you are being honest, regardless of which, which side you’re, you’re on this equation. I have had the experience before of someone expressing to me honestly, and even if it hurt, I was like, Oh my God, I’m so glad that I know, like, thank you for sharing this with me.

And a lot of times it actually provides an opportunity to grow the relationship more deeply. That is where connection is born. That is where it is created. We, we cannot have anything other than surface level connections. If we never fully express. And so many people are wandering through the world wondering why they don’t feel connected to people.

It’s because we are terrified to have the communication that explains our feelings honestly. And yes, expressing your emotions, that is also a skill. And we will get into that more on another episode. We can only fit so many things into one episode. But I really wanted to share this because I think that there are so many of us.

Who perhaps identify as really honest and an integrity. But we’re sweeping all of our shit under the rug and we’re holding it all in. We are not letting people know when they pissed us off. We’re not letting them know when we’re really sad or, or jealous, or worried or scared or something is coming up for us.

We’re not telling them. And when we’re not telling them, we are also not trusting them and we are not showing up in our own integrity for our own sake. These are things that we really have to sit with and, and more than sit with, we have to actually take action on. Because we can sit with it all we want.

And yes, the breakthrough moment is important. The aha of like, oh shit, I’ve been doing this thing and I never thought of it this way. But when we actually get down to it, we have to practice. This. We have to have the hard conversations. We have to dig so fucking deep for the courage to do this, to actually apply it, to test it out.

To have the communication with the people that we want to be more deeply connected with. And that will also open a deeper connection to yourself that will allow you to trust yourself more because our brains are always watching us. Our brains are always watching us. And if we identify as really honest, you know, and integrous humans, but then we aren’t actually honest in all of these other areas.

This is what I mean about the energetic leaks, because that will bleed into other areas and our brains will start to learn, Oh, I can’t actually trust myself because I think I’m one thing, but I’m acting out in a different way. My actions and my words are not matching. And that is one of the biggest things that I tell people to look for in relationships is actions matching words, actions matching words.

But again. When we’re looking outside of ourselves for that thing, we damn well better be embodying that too. So sit with this. Let me know how this lands. Let me know if you had a breakthrough from this because when I had these realizations years ago, I, I, and sometimes I still have to remind myself of this.

So it’s not a one and done thing. This is a journey. But when I had this initial breakthrough, it was, it was life changing. So I hope that there is at least one person out there who has the same beautiful breakthrough that that I had around this and, and the same, you know, type of incredible breakthrough that my client had around this.

And if you want to talk about this more, if you want help with this, if you want to figure out how to have some of these conversations, now that you’re having the, the breakthrough around it, knowing that you want to, and you’re just not sure how to proceed, let me know, reach out. I do have a one on one, uh, spaces available and I would love to get to talk to you, get to know you, to see if we are a good fit for each other.

Um, all the information is in the show notes. You can also reach me over at EmilyGoughCoach on Instagram. Um, and I’m over at EmilyGoughCoaching. com if you want some details. Okay. I’ve got some, some new stuff that is happening that I haven’t even actually posted about publicly anywhere. Um, on, you know, how to work together one on one, um, also starting to work with couples as well.

So hit me up. Let’s talk. And I hope that you can go out and have a heart conversation today. Talk soon.

Thank you so much for listening. If you want more, one of the most common questions I get is where do I even start doing this work to create deeper connections and better relationships? I’ve got a free 15 page guide for you called where do we begin? This is the very foundation that you need to start building healthy relationships with others and with yourself.

This is my gift to you and multiple people have referred to it as life changing. You can find it over at room to grow podcast. com or check the show notes to go download it and have it sent straight to your inbox. Thanks so much. And stay tuned for more episodes weekly.


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