Maisel writes in his book about humane helping that sometimes, what people need is a certain kind of silence and special holding of the moment.
The practice is that our heart is harmlessly open and receptive to whatever emerges emotionally and energetically from others.
This approach is useful in a therapeutic setting, but also applies to any interaction in which someone needs our help. The anxious friend, the baffled customer, the angry coworker, the frazzled boss, the overbearing parent, the depressed colleague, each of these exchanges invites us to renew our vows to the fidelity to the moment.
Assuring us that we don’t have to run away at the mere whiff of difficult emotions.
Things are going to be fine. Because all feelings have a beginning, middle and end. They are like weather patterns that come and go.
And so, this person sitting next to us does not to be fixed, merely witnessed.
The tendency, however, is to hope that people will be miraculously rescued by some brilliant thing we say. That we will be the chosen mentors whose timely insight will awaken them to the impossibility of happiness based on their previous worldview and change their trajectory forever.
But life is not a romantic comedy. There is no guarantee of a satisfying closure to every problem.
All the more reason to focus on truly joining people. Inhabiting their universe. Accepting their reality. Tolerating their emotionality. Opening to their difficult moments. Maybe even challenging ourselves to feel those feelings with them.
At the very least, doing so will show people that we are not scared of their feelings. And it will prove to us that this moment will not destroy us, it will not make us recoil and vanish. We’re still here.
Remember, we can’t go any deeper in our practice if we run from it. But when we practice holding the moment with people, relating to each other authentically and humanly, a divine electricity will surge between us.
LET ME ASK YA THIS…
What compromises our ability to be present with others?
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That Guy with the Nametag
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