It still surprises me how dread can turn into joy in a short time. I wish it didn’t have to do with how some one else reacts. But then, that’s not really all there was to it.
Have you ever been faced with an interaction you dreaded, and it turned out okay, or even good? It’s happened to me enough, that I’m starting to learn not to worry so much. But sometimes I still forget.
I expected a session to be difficult, for the other person to be angry and unreasonable. My job is to listen, not argue. As a counselor, I can reflect with active listening, I can re-frame. I can ask questions to guide someone toward a new perspective. I can also set boundaries. But I can’t just tell some one to grow up and follow the rules. Not just like that, anyway. But sometimes…..never mind.
There have been many times over the past thirty years when I’ve anticipated, and prepared for a challenging session. What I’ve learned, is that often people are not as challenging as I thought they would be. Of course there are all those times when the anger and irrationality were unexpected.
What makes the difference in either case, whether the challenge was expected or not, has often been turning things over to a Power Greater than myself. We do need to prepare and practice our communication skills. We need to be respectful and listen and set boundaries. But we can’t always predict what other people will do.
So before the session, I talked to God. I remembered that I am stronger and more at peace when I am in contact with the God of my understanding who works all kinds of miracles. When I let God have my back, everything is less difficult.
The word, LOVE, flickered into my awareness during our talk. God wove love into the defensive intellect of my mind. I felt by body relax a little.
It reminds me of a quote by Ralph Waldo Emerson:
“What lies behind us and what lies before us,
are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.”
I cannot be prepared for every situation. I can learn skills and prepare up to a point, but then I have to have faith in myself and my Higher Power.
So it wasn’t just that my client ended up being more calm and rational than I thought he would that changed my mood from dread to joy. It was my decision to get help from the most wise and powerful counselor I know, that moved me from dread to acceptance, to peace, to confidence, to relief and then joy. Joy that there was some understanding, some movement, possibly even growth in the other person. And in me.
It was not all smooth sailing, but it wasn’t a shipwreck either. I used my skills and divine help to maneuver successfully through rough water once again.
I wrote a poem about this experience in my other blog: https://joannesilvia.wordpress.com/2015/02/05/remembering-faith/
This week’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt was opposite emotions. If you’d like to join in the fun, visit:
Here are the rules:
1. Your post must be stream of consciousness writing, meaning no editing, (typos can be fixed) and minimal planning on what you’re going to write.
2. Your post can be as long or as short as you want it to be. One sentence – one thousand words. Fact, fiction, poetry – it doesn’t matter. Just let the words carry you along until you’re ready to stop.
3. There will be a prompt every week. I will post the prompt here on my blog on Friday, along with a reminder for you to join in. The prompt will be one random thing, but it will not be a subject. For instance, I will not say “Write about dogs”; the prompt will be more like, “Make your first sentence a question,” or “Begin with the word ‘The’.”
4. Ping back! It’s important, so that I and other people can come and read your post! For example, in your post you can write “This post is part of SoCS:” and then copy and paste the URL found in your address bar at the top of this post into yours. Your link will show up in my comments, for everyone to see. The most recent pingbacks will be found at the top.
5. Read at least one other person’s blog who has linked back their post. Even better, read everyone’s! If you’re the first person to link back, you can check back later, or go to the previous week, by following my category, “Stream of Consciousness Saturday,” which you’ll find right below the “Like” button on my post.
6. Copy and paste the rules (if you’d like to) in your post. The more people who join in, the more new bloggers you’ll meet and the bigger your community will get!
7. Have fun!