How do you tolerate the mismatch of differing communication styles? That feeling that the person in front of you has no idea what you are taking about? Well that’s the $64K question, now isn’t it? In trying to answer this question for myself, I find it helps to remember that there are many different ways that people respond to others.
Commonly attributed to Socrates is the phrase “Know thyself.” Well there are a lot of ways to accomplish that goal. In that context, today I’ll discuss one way today that can help you attain a goal or stick to a new habit you wish to maintain. Gretchen Rubin writes about this in her highly usable book Better Than Before, and it is a construct she created. That is why if it is useful to you, go for it, but if not, then just realize there are other categories out there you may find more applicable to your situation. If there is one thing our brains are designed for, it is categorizing!
I was reading an excerpt from an interview given by Dr. Atul Gawande on his book Being Mortal: What Matters in the End, and he commented that:
“People have priorities in their lives besides just living longer and they matter a great deal. The most reliable way to learn what those priorities are is to ask and we don’t ask. The result is that when you don’t ask, the care and treatment that people get is often increasingly out of alignment with their priorities and what really matters most to them.”
What if you were trained to look for the bad?
And what if your brain evolved to look for nothing but the bad?
This time of year there is a lot going on with end-of-summer vacations, children going back to school, some leaving for college, and the gears that must shift as we head into late summer/early fall.
I read an article recently on how Everything Old is New Again when marketing to boomers. In it, the author talks about rekindling their nostalgia for products by taking them and making the products relevant again (such as milk in glass bottles, Detroit’s muscle cars, or the original food trucks like Good Humor).
I was on the beach observing a little boy about 4 years old who was full of energy as he raced back and forth busily building what he called a swimming pool. it was both fascinating and uplifting to watch the two adults involved with him, whom I assumed were his parents. They were 100% engaged in play with him while also teasing and flirting with each other. They felt like a unit.
So I got to feeling kind of blue today because I wasn’t feeling any sense of accomplishment. Then I got busy with a bunch of mundane stuff that had to get done: a bill to pay on line, a recommendation for a student, and an email I needed to send in response to a query from a company asking about my satisfaction. Normally I don’t respond to such queries, but this particular company did a really good job for me on an auto collision repair, so I filled out their survey.
Recently I found myself in a discussion with a friend who has a background in psychology. She was arguing that past life events and troubles need to be “processed” and “worked through” in order to alleviate current problems. She felt that all past actions would dictate future actions, therefore to understand present problems, the past has to be fully explored. Interestingly, she expressed, with a deep, heaving sigh, that having to do so was a complete drag. She said if you were starting out with a new counselor, you had to “catch them up” with all of your past significant life events. She expressed how exhausting this can be.
I don’t know. No tin foil hat? You don’t live in LA? You wear matching socks? Most of the time? Maybe you can define normal. It’s really tough, but I’ll give it a try.
PAGE RUTLEDGE, LCSW, CHt | Anxiety Therapy
5006 Randall Parkway (close to UNCW)
Wilmington, NC 28403
Free parking at office