Dogs and People …

Dogs group“One reason a dog can be such a comfort when you’re feeling blue is that he doesn’t try to find out why.”

~ Unknown source, but quoted by dog lovers everywhere

 We might take a little hint from our beloved pets here.   When you seek to truly comfort someone, the reason is not the focus.

 The other person may not be feeling as they do for the reasons you think they are.  Do not assume.

The other person may not be feeling the same emotion you think they are feeling.   Do not assume (repeated suggestion).

The other person may be feeling an emotion you recognize, but at a different level of intensity than you understand.  Do not assume (beginning to get the idea?)

They might not want their issue confronted or their problem solved.  Do not move into Fixer mode.

They might want to just talk about what is going on, not discuss it.  No response needed, just hang out and hang in.

They may not want to talk about it, but just exist for a while.  Do not push for disclosure or to “talk through the pain”.

Maybe they just want someone to sit and be with them …  Meeting their need for support, rather than our need to “Do Something“.

A dog will happily do just that, and so can we.

 I know some of this flies in the face of our traditional understanding of grief and problem-solving, where the emphasis is on action and expression, but some solid recent research supports the value of not doing anything, but just being there.  I’ll talk more about that later this week.

Appreciating the value of just hanging out with another in the Heartland ….


A Nice Combination …

Couple and CalculatorTo really impress your lady friend, you should say:

‘How do I love thee? 

Let me count the ways.’

… Then reach for a calculator.”

Not original with me

This humorous little combination of poetry and pragmatism is maybe a perfect example of how to blend two sometimes completing behavioral preferences.

‘How do I love thee?  Let me count the ways.’

This is how you speak to a person’s heart, to their emotions, to that part of all of us which desires to be praised in quaint and measured tones.

The unspoken inference here is that the professed love exists in many different forms.

“Then reach for a calculator.”

Now the realist speaks.  The emotional commitment above is about to be quantified and made real.  

The person is now saying “I can prove what I claim”.

To put this example into DiSC language, this might be the work of someone with strong leanings toward behavior which combines Conscientiousness (Quality and Accuracy ~ a C) with Supportiveness (Relationships and Caring ~ an S).

Whether the person will be an SC or a CS will depend on how they actually communicate all those waysSmile.

Here’s an overview of all four DiSC behavioral styles from Guy Harris, The Recovering Engineer

Trying to merge my soft-hearted and hard-nosed sides in the Heartland ….