Psychological Self-Help

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1259
are taking responsibility for your emotions. "I" statements inform
others about your feelings and, thus, may lead to change, but they do
not demand change or direct others. They leave the other person
responsible and free to decide if he/she will change to accommodate
your needs. 
Purposes
Consider using "I" statements: 
any time you want to share your feelings or desires in a frank,
unthreatening, undemanding way. When you are trying to
disclose more about yourself to build a relationship. 
any time stress is experienced in a relationship, especially if
you are feeling angry or dissatisfied or if the other person is
resistive to changing in response to your requests or demands. 
if both parties have problems, i.e. both of you can take turns
giving "I" statements and giving empathy responses. 
if the other person is using a lot of "you" (blaming, critical)
statements, try to translate them into "I" statements and
empathize with the accuser's feelings. 
Steps
STEP ONE: Understand when to use and how to use "I"
statements in place of "you" statements and other harmful
statements.
In order to communicate our feelings clearly, we must,
of course, be aware of them, comfortable or at least accepting of
them, and able to accurately express the feelings in words. When
we lack this awareness, acceptance, or verbal skill, our feelings are
likely to be expressed indirectly and ineffectively, as in these "you"
statements (adapted partly from Johnson, 1981): 
You statements
"I" statements
Blaming: "You make me
so mad."
"I feel angry when you _____." Or, "I have
chosen to let it bother me when you _____."
Judging or labeling:
"You are an
inconsiderate, hostile,
arrogant creep."
"I feel betrayed when you criticize me in
front of others."
Accusing: "You don't
give a damn 
about me!" 
"I feel neglected when you avoid me."
Ordering: "You shut
up!"
"I feel annoyed when you call me names and
make fun of me."
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