This cliché’ is surely stupid, boring and inaccurate at the very least. Of course the situation or feeling must involve the person to whom the statement is being directed. Otherwise the expression would not be made in the first place.
So the question remains: Why do people in various types of relationships say: “It is Not You It is me”? Perhaps because the speaker saying the catch phrase does not want to speak honestly and tell the other person that without a doubt the receiver of the message is annoying, bothersome or unattractive to the presenter of the statement.
Being direct in communication may seem difficult for some people in some types of relationships. This list of interactions can include work, school or interpersonal relationships. There is a perceived risk of making another person feel sad or uncomfortable. Having to see the other person often can seem strange or awkward if there is a sense that one may have offended another, or if one is the seemingly offended party to the blunt discussion about what was not working in the regular interactions, prior to an expression of disapproval. Even though the goal of a direct communication is to achieve improvement in performance or openness there can be a reserved state of shyness following a meeting that is overly expressive.
The speaker of the message is willing to embarrass oneself and absorb the blame for being unlikable, to shield another from shame, or to prevent them from having to hear a sad and directly personal assessment of their character; as it appears to others. The communicator in a superior position such as being a supervisor or business owner may need to explain that work needs to improve or that a sales strategy needs to be revamped to their employees. Being under pressure to pay salaries and maintain carrying costs of their business they may need to speak openly to achieve immediate improvement. An employee will have to understand the necessity of having a job and balance that with one’s own requirement to feel good. Both the employee and the employer will need to know the communication style and nature to be able to assess when there is rudeness, versus a fair and direct expression of what must be done in the workplace to ensure that the business can be maintained.
Perhaps. if regardless of what is communicated, if it is done with a smile and with a joyful countenance, then the intended message will be well received.