Oh my, I heard it again today while working with a client who is grieving after the care of and subsequent loss of both of her parents and her husband during the last 5 years. In tears, she said to me, “my friend told me that I would feel better if I got over myself and started helping others less fortunate than me”. Yikes! Yes, in some circumstances, helping others is a wonderful way to distract yourself from your problems and tap into the feel good part of your brain. BUT it doesn’t HAVE to be for you. If you are already tapped out – for ANY reason – helping others might be the last thing that will distract you or make you feel better. For my client, believing that she wasn’t doing it right and should be “getting over herself” by helping others was causing her anxiety. In her case, rather than giving away the little she had left to give, she needed to take care of herself. And for her, this meant a safe place to talk about her experiences, so she could build her resources and heal. She needed someone to help her hold her pain, not the other way around. So, if someone’s advice sounds more burdensome than helpful, it just might be.
#justtellmewhattodo #taketimetoheal #buildresources #itsoktosayno #safeplace