Helping our patients to “go a bit meta” from their thoughts and feelings is an important part of counseling.
So instead of asking how do you feel, we consider asking or stating…
What feelings are showing up for you right now?
If your worry has a voice, what is it trying to tell us?
If your anger has a voice, what is it trying to say?
I can see that your feeling mind is not happy with me at the moment.
And instead of asking, what do you think, we consider asking or stating…
What’s your thinking mind saying?
I can see that your thinking mind is fighting with your feeling mind.
I can see the your thinking mind is trying to reason with your feeling mind.
I can see that your thinking mind wants to trust me but your feeling mind doesn’t.
I can see how critical your thinking mind is of your feeling mind.
It may allow for better discussions and reflections at a meta-perspective level. Holding things more lightly, mindfully, and less personally. They are simply thoughts and feelings. It’s simply information.
Moving from self as content to self as context.
That’s where self compassion, and self acceptance reside.
That’s when an escalating argument becomes a fruitful discussion.
That’s where outer and inner conflict can truly be resolved.