TELLING YOURSELF STORIES THAT HURT YOU
I think we have all told these stories - the ones where we make up the stories but end up telling a story that hurt us. Example, you ask a friend to hang out for the evening and they say "no". So off you go making up stories - maybe they said no "because they are mad about me going to dinner with another friend last week". Then you go on to extend the story: "they probably don't like my other friend". Or maybe they said no "because I didn't lend them $20" or "because I didn't answer my phone last night". Whatever the story may be, how likely will it make us feel better?
I like to think that I have reached a point, socially, where I embrace the word "no" without a story. In a social setting when dealing with friends, associates and family, "no" is not an issue for me. Maybe you are mad because I didn't lend you the twenty, or you don't like my friend, or you are upset because I said "no" to one of your previous requests. Whatever it may be, I have reached a point where you saying "no" does not create an emotional whirlwind within me.
Yes, I will think of stories that may "explain" your response, and one of them may be true; but, I don't KNOW which one is true,or why you said "no" (and knowing me, I probably won't try to find out either). Regardless, I will not allow these stories to become the truth I tell myself.
However, if next weekend I ask you to hangout, and you say "no", well, that's a different story.