As parents or loved ones or even as good friends, we try to find the right words to say when life turns bad for someone we love. However, before going forward, I will take into account my own times of hopelessness, in which, any word was too hard for me to hear. Some words, in fact, were more like an insult instead of encouraging.

Sometimes, words are not justice. Sometimes, a suggestion almost seems insensitive, as if it were that easy to just let it go.
I have news for everyone, if it were so easy to “just” let it go, no one would suffer from depression and anxiety wouldn’t exist.
If it were easy to, “Just stop,” or “Just don’t do that anymore,” there would be no such thing as overthinking and panic attacks would be a thing of the past.

If it were so easy, no one would mourn or hurt because intellectually, we would all understand that life is only a brief process.
Therefore, there is a beginning, middle, and then there is an end to everything. Everything is only temporary, right? But yet, we attach ourselves to so many things that no longer exist.
And why?
Intellectually, we all understand. Emotionally, however, we hurt and we feel and we often torment ourselves with “Would of,” or “Could of,” and “Should of,” ideas that literally punish us into emotional anguish.

During a feeling of emotional entrapment or in the midst of heartbreak and frustration, most times, there are no right words to say to someone. In most cases, actions are what speak best.

I remember speaking with a young man after he lost his father. I walked in to offer my condolences. I told him about my thoughts and feelings when my Old Man passed.
He wasn’t interested. He was angry. Not at me, but still. He was angry and at that point, no words could be said except for, “I love you and I’m here.”

Sometimes it is best not to look for the right thing to say.
Just be there.

It would be inaccurate to believe anyone among us is an authority. The truth is we are all unique in our own way. Rather than explain our understanding, wouldn’t it be a greater benefit to let someone speak for themselves?

People spend much of their lives, struggling in their own purgatory; not in hell, not in Heaven, not sure whether to charge or retreat, and somehow in limbo like a soldier unsure of their next command.
Which way to go?  Is this it? Is this the right move?

People spend much of their lives either running or hiding or trying to find some way to protect them from some imaginary beast that doesn’t exist.
Yet, to them, the beast is real. To them, this beast is the reason why they run or hide. To them, the beast is why the act or respond. To them, the beast can be one of several things. The beast could be fear or pain. To some the beast is memory and the fear that the past will resurface somehow to punish them once again.
To some the best is the bondage of “Self,” and no matter what we say logically, the illogical takes over.

See, my beast is real. My beast speaks in different dialects. He tries to trick me so I won’t see him coming. In fact, I know my beast very well because the beast is me when I’m not me at my best.
My beast is a thought pattern based on old assumptions and fears. truth is, my beast is a little kid that was picked on or pissed his pants in the second grade and everyone in the cafeteria knew about it. So my beast screams so he’ll never be picked on again.

Of all the answers I’ve come across in my own journey, no answer was as impactful as my own answers. This is called self-realization.
This is when the brain makes a new connection and creates a new thought pattern. This is when we come to one of those “Eureka” moments which is a cry of satisfaction or understanding.

We can hear a suggestion a thousand times, and then one day, our ears open differently. Our interpretations change. Out intentions change. Or, maybe we’re just ready to take on a new way of thinking because the old patterns were not beneficial.

I sat in on a large conference where a government official asked what we can do to coerce people to change or choose help instead of stay on a destructive path.
Hardheadedness is a very real problem.
How long can someone bang their head against the wall before they realize they’re actions are the reason for their headaches?

The word, “Stop,” falls short in times like this.
As yourself how many times you’ve witnessed someone in a state of panic?
Would it work if you told them to calm down?
Probably not, right?

If telling people to “Stop” worked.
Smoking would not be a problem to quit.
No one would drink excessively. Drugs would never be a thing. And with any other behavioral disorder, we could solve it all with the word, “Stop!”

I have often heard people say, “No one listens anymore.”
I have heard people tell me, “No one understands.”
Most are quick to settle this dispute by disagreeing and saying, “That’s not true.” and we mean this with the best intentions . . .

In the realm of emotional entrapment, feeling trapped is all we see. But what would happen if we allowed a freedom of expression? What of we opened this up to an honest reflective conversation?

Rather than instruct people on how to think or feel, what would happen if we gave them the right to think or feel as they choose, and through freedom of their own voice; what if we let them come to their own conclusions simply by acting as a sounding board for their thoughts?

I think of how people use the words “They or “Them,” in their explanations. “They did this to me” or “They said that,” is often just a case of perception.
This is our cognitive understanding, which is based on feeling and experience and thoughts.
But what if our perception was deceived by passed experiences which lead us to the wrong conclusions?

How can we re-program our thinking after it has been running along the same channels and heading down the same pathways for most of our lives? Any other way of thinking would be inconceivable; therefore, to live any other way would be unbelievable.

We are all proof based people. In order to believe, we need proof. We need to feel it and touch it. We need to see it. And seeing is believing, which is why if we can’t see ourselves living differently, we will never be any different from how we are.

We need to trigger the belief system. Instead of preaching or telling people what to do or how to think; we need to allow their freedom of thinking to explore a new pathway to come up with an alternate conclusion.
Otherwise, life just stays the same as it was.

There are those who remain stuck in purgatory; not in hell, and certainly not in Heaven. They’re not happy or miserable but only surviving and simply unfulfilled.

Unfulfilled . . .
I like that word

I like it because the opposite is fulfillment
To fulfill
To act out
To perform
To achieve
To do, to work, to live as you choose
(or be as you want to be)
To develop full potential.
I like that idea
What would need to happen for this to be the case?

The idea of hope can be an intimidating thing; however, the light of hope can be enough to act as a beacon which can be helpful to someone lost in their own darkness.

Therefore, lead by example. And lead from the front not the back.
Words are not always the justice we intend.

Sometimes there is no right thing to say but all too often, we rack our brains trying to fix the circumstance when in all honesty, sometimes the best thing to do is listen.

Trust me . . .
it goes a long way.

One thought on “Listen

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