Saturday 4 May 2024

Thought Picnic: Know when the conversation is no longer helpful

Be careful with how you listen

I can understand how people can be wearied by situations, circumstances, or adversities affecting others, especially in situations where they are somewhat unable to help.

Then, in those settings, some try to contribute to the general narrative and outlook in the hope of better outcomes, and that is what we all wish for.

However, how that contribution and support is delivered might have other unintended consequences. Having grown up in a setting that was not as effusive with praise as it could be of criticism, rebuke, admonition, and comparison, advantageous to one side of the argument that believed in right and might, you begin to grow a thick skin to the negative.

Notice when the tone begins to change

For a while, I instituted a weekly conversation where I relayed issues affecting me in the hope that helpful and supportive counsel might ensue from the experience and knowledge of life that far exceeded mine. Indeed, it was very useful until it was not.

Laced with the encouraging words of concern, love, and affection were the inadvertent slips of candour that began to negate the purpose for which these conversations continued. The slow drip of weariness at a situation not changing began to take its toll. I endured it for a while until the cumulative effect called for a termination of this conversational construct.

Cut off the negative promptly

It was no longer helpful for me, I needed to sequester myself from the unhealthy even if it all meant well. It behoves us all to constantly review and assess the kinds of conversation we engage with, curate the people who speak into our lives and circumstances, cultivate the supportive, discern the disruptive, and close out the negative.

An emotional detachment regardless of the relationship is called for, it is something that I have found necessary to do, even from childhood. For all that we aim to cherish, never adhere to that which might perish.

1 comment:

Brian said...

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