Tip: How Not to Walk On Egg Shells


My friend Joelle called me the other day. She said she was walking on eggshells every time she spoke to her sister because she is scared she’ll say the wrong thing. (You can read about that here.) Then it hit her: she was filled with fear that her sister would either get angry or say something unkind back.

Then it dawned on Joelle that she was completely, utterly and absolutely powerless over her sister’s reactions. Joelle was living in fear that she wasn’t saying the right thing, and trying to second-guess her sister. When she realized that she had no idea what she might say that could tick off her sister, she suddenly felt free.

“It was as if a weight lifted off my shoulders,” Joelle confessed. “It isn’t that I don’t care about her — I just can’t keep being afraid of her reactions.”

That was freedom. Her sister’s upset had nothing to do with what she said or did. So Joelle could go ahead and say whatever it was she wanted.

Did you start reading this post hoping I’d give you a tip about how not to walk on eggshells? So this is it. Don’t walk on those eggshells. Stomp, dance, prance and jump on them. How someone else reacts to you is totally out of your control.

Are you walking on eggshells around somebody? What would happen if you do something different?

Oh, and why is that photo of a poppy flower there? Because when I post these blogs, I have this little wizard that comes up with photos of what she thinks I’m writing about. I could have put up a photo of an egg but a flower is definitely more inspiring.

How someone else reacts to you is totally out of your control.

About dianabletter

Diana Bletter is the author of several books, including The Invisible Thread: A Portrait of Jewish American Women (with photographs by Lori Grinker), shortlisted for a National Jewish Book Award. Her novel, A Remarkable Kindness, (HarperCollins) was published in 2015. She is the First Prize Winner of Moment Magazine's 2019 Fiction Contest. Her work has appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Commentary, tabletmag, Glamour, The Forward, The North American Review, Times of Israel, and is a reporter for Israel21C, and many other publications. She is author of Big Up Yourself: It's About Time You Like Being You and The Mom Who Took off On Her Motorcycle, a memoir of her 10,000-mile motorcycle trip to Alaska and back to New York. She lives in a small beach village in Western Galilee, Israel, with her husband and family. She is a member of the local hevra kadisha, the burial circle, and a Muslim-Jewish-Christian-Druze women's group in the nearby town of Akko. And, she likes snowboarding and climbing trees.
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