John's Blog

The Blog of John Gibson, PhD

Talking Helps

Talking Helps

But not just any kind of talk.

If you’re going to get to your core pain, you’ll have to speak honestly about your self. You’ll have to tell the truth about what you really feel, what you really think, who you really are, what you really want.

If you’re going to make progress, sooner or later you’ll have to drop your emotional armor. You’ll have to let somebody see behind the mask.

Ordinary social discourse usually requires you to put on a good face, cover up, pretend things are fine. This kind of talk might get you through the day, but it will not help you heal, discover new things about yourself, or resolve problems.

Your words can be used to convey information. But they can also convey emotion, experience, memory, conflict, contradictions, complexities, dilemmas, secrets, insecurities, hopes, dreams, and above all, possibilities.

Talking helps, especially when you have the right listener.

A good listener asks good questions. A good listener keeps the focus on you. A good listener will challenge you, especially if you fall into the trap of trying to put on a good front.

A good listener will offer input, interpretations, and counterpoints, but not at the expense of being heard, understood, or supported.

A good listener talks, but not too much.

Talking helps. Especially if it’s the right kind of talk, with the right person, about the right things. You in?