You don't have to fix anyone's problems. You don’t have to save them, heal them, or urgently get them to take on your favorite beliefs, theories, and techniques.
Just be there with them so that they feel felt and understood. When they look up at you, you are really there.
Listen, to the story they are telling you, of how they are making sense of their experience. Listen also to the somatic story, to the secret, sensitive language emerging from their body and their heart.
And also listen carefully to their story of safety and what makes them feel safe. This story is told in the language of the nervous system and will speak to you if you attune to it.
Momentarily bracket your beliefs, ideas, and systems of change. With the poetic beauty and power of your mirror neuron system, enter into the miracle we-space with them, where they can know for just one moment that they are not alone.
I'm with you. I'm here. I feel you. I understand you.
Extend to them a soothed nervous system, a sanctuary of holding, a field of permission where their experience can unfold without any pressure for it to shift, change, or heal. Remove the burden that they become someone or something else in order for you to stay close.
For just a few moments, resist the temptation to “teach” them, but instead “reach” them.
The mind will doubt if this is enough… but the body knows. The heart knows.
We are able to do this to the degree with are in touch with the orphans of soma and psyche that dance out our own unlived life – the unmet grief, the untouched sadness, the unmetabolized rage.
If we are not in conscious, embodied, and compassionate contact with these ones, we will not be able to recognize and hold them as they surge in the interactional field, and our friend will not feel safe to access, articulate, and integrate what is alive within them.
The Other – whether manifesting outside us or taking internal form – is not in need of new information, strategies, techniques, or beliefs, but longs and burns for you… your presence, your tenderness, your raw unfiltered being, your love.
My previous book - The Path is Everywhere: Uncovering the Jewels Hidden Within You
My online course - The Path of the Wounded Healer