Tuesday, October 26, 2021

Helping our patients learn to simply notice and observe uncomfortable thoughts and feelings

In counseling work, one of the hardest skills for patients to gain, is the ability to step back, stay grounded, and just notice and observe their uncomfortable thoughts or feelings, OR the uncomfortable thoughts or feelings of others. It’s about learning to create space for it. A pause to perceive rather than to impulsively react to them. It can be viewed as a comma, a full stop, or a new paragraph for the narratives in our minds.

Without it, some may get “sucked in” by the thoughts or feelings like a tornado.

Some may try to resist by arguing or try to change those thoughts or feelings.

Some may try to find some form of distraction or simply detach/dissociate from those thoughts or feelings in order to avoid discomfort or negative consequences.

The pauses from noticing and observing thoughts and feelings, short or long, can make a huge difference to the stories in our minds.

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