Validation ≠ Agreement

Happy August, my friends!

How are you??

What are you doing to find peace these days?

I’m feeling surprisingly settled myself. This time with my kids and my spouse has become something I wouldn’t change for the world, for all of my doubts.

I have noticed an extremely emotionally-charged climate during this chaotic time, though, and I wanted to share one small tip I’ve used to quiet some of the clamour.

Did you know that you can validate hard feelings and experiences without agreeing to an opinion or behavior that is contrary to your values?

We practiced this just this week with ourselves, when we talked about self-compassion!

But, we can absolutely apply this concept to the messy, yet sometimes crucial, conversations we are having in our homes and communities, right now – conversations about racism, stranger danger, social distancing, masks, the election, etc… (whew!).

If someone says something you don’t agree with:

“I would never vote for (fill-in-the-blank) because they stand for (fill-in-the-blank) which is horrible/awful/not okay.”

You can say:

“I see you’re feeling (fill-in-the-blank) about (fill-in-the-blank). That must be very important to you.”

You might even follow it up with an opinion of your own. You don’t have to keep your own values hush-hush (that’s a whole other topic), but you can exercise more compassion just by adding in this simple phrase.

It also requires you to listen for the feelings of others (in order to repeat back to them), which dissipates a lot of the tension in and of itself.

May your hearts, homes, and relationships be filled with more peace as we all muddle through this season.

❤ Jenny


Here are some more thoughts about communicating from a place of identity, if you’re interested. Don’t mind my jim-jams 😂.

16 thoughts on “Validation ≠ Agreement

  1. Interesting. I’m struggling with this right now, in the sense that I haven’t been on Facebook or Instagram since Wednesday afternoon, and if I do go back, who I really do and don’t want to be friends with, mostly for these kinds of reasons.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Amen. We need to be sincere with the feelings yet knowing our reality is in what God calls it. That has been my approach too of late. So when I feel sad, I pray yes and I say I feel sad but my reality is Joy. So I engage joy and over time it helps me get out of it.
    Thank you for sharing this ma’am. 🤗

    Liked by 1 person

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