Statements that begin with “I feel” are really about “I want.”
When you say “I feel sad,” what you’re really saying is “I want you to apologize,” or ”I want you to cheer me up,” or “I want to talk to you.”
When you say “I feel like we’re drifting apart,” what you’re really saying is “I want you to be interested in me again,” or “I want to spend more time together,” or “I want to break up with you.”
It’s exhausting to spend hours discussing feelings. All you’re doing is beating around the bush and avoiding making a direct statement about what you want that will make you happy, shut you up or shut someone else down.
My theory was proven just this morning when TAG texted me what he wanted instead of how he felt. For the record, he doubted the validity of this theory until, for every scenario he came up with, I gave examples of how an ‘I want’ statement was better than an ‘I feel’ statement. After the text, he also acknowledged how much easier it was to be direct about what he wanted than explaining how he felt about something only for me to then ask “So what do you want?”
I’m not saying we should ignore our feelings. There’s a lot of value in experiencing them, but not too much in talking about them without being honest with yourself and others and asking for what you actually want.