Yesterday was #timetotalk day.
A national day to focus on mental health and well-being. I was in the very fortunate position of spending the day with a group of psychotherapists and talk we did… and how!
I am very fortunate to have found my tribe of thinkers, reflectors and talkers, I fit with them they fit with me. We talk… a lot. And sometimes we don’t talk at all but all the while the conversation goes on as we tell each other in myriad ways how we are feeling, what we need, and how able we are to stay and be. As therapists and coaches we are acutely aware that not only do we need to take #timetotalk but also #timetolisten, to tune in, to hold space for one another. In everyday life and particularly in business, this is not the way we have culturally grown to respond to one another and as such we are missing out on vital aspects of our communication capacity. We are lost behind the mists of the stuff we do and the people we are, and are susceptible to becoming obscured.
Coaching and therapy serve to fill this void we have created. The noticing and listening with attunement we can offer one another, and the transformative power which that simple act can have on the person who experiences being truly seen. So simply written but so rarely available to us.
When I speak with clients who are having, or have had, issues with work relationships it so often comes down to the fact that they have not felt seen or heard by the other person. Scenarios come dressed in very many versions of ‘he said, she said, they did,’ but at the root of it all the person in front of me has felt their needs were overlooked. A vital part of our mental well-being rests in the validation we receive from others; we are intrinsically good and worthy of love. It goes back to our earliest infancy and the need stays real within us throughout our lives.
That’s why it’s not only time to talk, but time to listen, and time to see and time to hear. To bear witness to one another and allow space for both of you to be right and both of your needs to be met.
Easier said than done, but when we can access this ‘ninja-level’ communication skill, a whole world of possibility opens up before us. When we are seen we are able to connect deeply with who we are, and we can find fulfilment in the work we do.
When we go unseen we find it hard to access our own truth and feel a level of disconnect with that which we have, or have not, achieved and find it hard to move forward into a place of satisfaction.
If you are a leader or a manager, one of the greatest gifts you can offer your team is to find #timetolisten.