Often, people come to our office and ask what they can do to improve their lives, to fix their relationship, or to make the work experience more rewarding? It is not an easy question and there certain are no easy answers. Everyone has their own unique experience that we explore in the counseling process.
Understanding and empathy are the keys to healing and growth. If you’ve been told for your entire life that you’re not good enough, having a relationship with someone who provides you with support can be a healing and restorative experience. If that person gets frustrated with your low self-esteem or your hesitancy to connect with others, it’s an indication that empathy isn’t really present.
There is a deep-down part of us that has evolved to need human-to-human contact. This is the contact that comforts our spirits and let’s us know that we are not alone in the world. In reality, we can have enormous lists of friends and still feel completely alone. According to neuroscientists, when we really connect in face-to-face conversation, parts of our brains literally begin to synchronize. This keeps us attached to each other. It can help keep us securely coupled together.
Sometimes, there are just those days. These are the mornings that the alarm doesn’t go off at the right time, when the kids aren’t cooperative in getting out the door to school, and the toast gets burned in the toaster. Maybe you leave your house later than normal and get caught behind the school bus convoys that seem to stop at every single corner. Then you realize you forgot your lunch.
Monday always seems to come just a little too quickly, doesn’t it? We have all been there. Some of us get there at least once every week. When Monday morning rolls around – or even Sunday night – we start to worry about the week ahead. Maybe we dread going back to work because we don’t get along with our coworkers or we don’t feel fulfilled. Sometimes it can feel like we’re just spinning our wheels. Feelings like these make for a difficult start for the week and have a way of draining our motivation before we even get started.
If you venture out into the world at all during this time of year, you will probably be overwhelmed by hearts and chocolates and silhouettes of Cupid. Don’t get me wrong; it is great to have a time on the calendar when we focus on love and romance. It can benefit every relationship to have seasons like these that encourage partners to express their love. Do it. Love it. Enjoy it.
Have you ever had a conversation with someone who really listened? It’s remarkable, isn’t it? Perhaps we go through most days with so many distractions and interruptions that we aren’t necessarily aware of all the things that compete for our attention. But when someone truly listens to us, we notice.
We live our lives at such a pace that staying present is difficult for us. We get distracted by cell phone dings and notifications while we are sitting around the dinner table with the loved ones we haven’t seen all day. We get caught up in trying to figure out how get that stain out of our favorite shirt while our kids are wanting to play.