It’s not always easy to truly support someone you love?

SnowTigerWhenever we feel someone we care about needs support whether it be emotionally, financially or in some other way, it’s always a balancing act.
During difficult times it can be tempting to try and fix someone else’s problems by doing too much for them or telling them what to do. Although this may be preferable to leaving someone to struggle on alone, it can prevent them from the learning and achieving the growth that often comes from going through difficult circumstances that will help them to cope and deal with similar situations that could happen in the future.
It’s only natural we may feel negative emotion when listening to the struggles of a loved one because naturally, we want to see them happy, but helping someone too much can come from our own desire to feel happy by seeing the person we love feeling better.
In reality, every situation is different with both people having their own personal perspective about what’s happening and we can only ever do what we feel is best at any given moment. When emotions are running high, sometimes all anyone really needs is someone to listen to how they are feeling without judgement rather than coming up with 100 ideas on how to fix the problem. I’m not saying that some well considered gentle advice may not be a good idea if we strongly feel it will help, but when someone is in turmoil they are often not in the place to be able to hear or put into action any advice and instead it may cause them to become more confused or even worse, feel like they are being judged in a negative way.
Men especially like to fix things and when faced with an emotionally unstable female counterpart often use all their brain power to come up with as many actions as they can to try and rectify the problem as quickly as possible. Although much of the time this is coming from a place of caring, things can quickly turn pear shaped if one isn’t careful.
I suppose the moral of the story is most of us can and do sort our own problems out one way or another and often all we require is someone to truly listen to us without judgment and with compassion and love.
When we truly listen without taking on our counterparts negative emotions and feeling bad ourselves by making a conscious effort to stay in a neutral or positive emotional place, this is the best support we can provide that doesn’t dictate what should be done but let’s the other feel, express and possibly let go of the negative emotions they are feeling. When we understand it is through the thoughts and emotions we feel that creates our future life experiences, we can know what a great service listening to another can provide without the need to give any advice.
You only need to observe people to know it’s difficult to find someone who can listen to others in this way as most people have so much going on in their own lives that much of their thought process is taken up with what they are currently doing and dealing with depriving them of the ability to be able to truly listen to another. If we have had the good fortune to have someone who has been in the place to truly listen to us when we’ve needed it, we can know the great difference it can make to us as we move forward. Sometimes it’s the smallest things that make the biggest differences in our lives.

No one else can really solve our problems for us no matter what advice we’ve been given. It is always each individuals responsibility to decide what is best for themselves. It was never supposed to be someone else’s job to tell others how they should live their lives and what they should be doing, that’s what each person came here to decide for themselves. By just being there for someone and listening gives them the opportunity to get how they are feeling out and make space for healing and clarity to come in…….

And so it does…..

Question from Master Eight…. Is it better to listen to other people?

This is a conversation between me and my eight-year-old son that I recorded and then typed out for this post.
If you’re wondering why it’s because he often asks me the most amazing questions that we’ll have a long conversation about. The last question he had was a few days ago, and at the end of it I said: “I’ve got an awesome idea, we should try recording our conversations and I’ll make a post out of them!” He thought that was a cool idea, so this is a conversation we had today!

For ease of reading, I have edited unnecessary content and very personal circumstances related to the subject we’ve been talking about but feel it’s a truthful representation, most being word for word, of our conversation.

Master Eight-M8, is in Italics.

So what’s your question again Darling?

M8-Is it better to listen to other people?

Compared to what?


Compared to what you want to do?


So what made you want to know that?

M8-Because I just wanted to know if people should listen to others.

So you want to know if you should listen to other people?


Like what other people?

M8-Like you and Daddy, people like that…

So you mean just Mummy and Daddy, not other people, because do you usually listen to other people?


Ok, who would be the other people in your life apart from Mummy and Daddy that you would listen too?

M8-Arghh…Uhm…My teacher at school.

Anyone else….or are you only talking about people you know well?

M8-Yer, not just like people you don’t know that are strangers because if people say things to me and it’s someone I don’t know, I don’t say anything and I just don’t listen to them.

That’s a good idea, it’s not good to listen to people you don’t know.

Do you think it’s a good idea to listen to Mummy and Daddy and your teacher at school?


Why do you think it’s a good idea?

M8-Well, sometimes if I don’t listen to you guys I might not get to do other things I want to do.

Ok, is that the only reason you listen because you don’t want the negative consequences?


Are you sure that’s the only reason you listen, because you don’t want something unwanted to happen?



M8-Well, sometimes I listen to you when I’m playing my game when you call me for lunch or dinner and I don’t just ignore you because I’m hungry.


Well, I think it’s a little bit sad the only reason you listen is because you want to be able to play your game, is that the only reason you listen?


Well, what other reasons are there?

M8-Arghh…because…I’m thinking…I’m thinking…I’m thinking…

Well my question to you is, are you only listening to us to avoid not being able to have something you want?

M8-Well sometimes I get in trouble if I don’t listen to you guys.

Yes, but…

M8-And I don’t like getting in trouble…

Like what sort of trouble?

M8-Like if I am mean I get told off or I have to go away for a bit.

But aren’t you sometimes listening because it feels good to listen?

M8-Yes, it does sometimes.

But you don’t listen to us all the time though do you, so if we asked you to do something but it strongly goes against what you want to do you don’t always listen, which is okay I’m just saying you’re not only listening to us blindly without any regard to how you’re feeling.


Would it be true to say you’re making a choice to listen based on, will it feel better to listen and do this or will it feel better not to listen and do that.
And doesn’t the decision you make depend on the possible consequences you think may happen, and how much you do or don’t want to do something, but it’s still a choice that you make after weighing up all the pros and cons of the situation.

So would it be fair to say you’re making your decisions based on what feels best and what you feel will get you the closest to what you are wanting and sometimes that’s listening to Mum and Dad and sometimes it isn’t


That’s all you can do, that’s what everyone does, from where ever we are now, we’re all choosing what we feel is the best option for us, the choice we feel will hopefully produce the best outcome.

Of course, I’m Mum so I would always say it’s a good idea to listen to your Awesome Mummy wouldn’t I!! Hehehe

M8-And Awesome Daddy!! Hehehe

Yes, and at the end of the day, you’re always guided by yourself. Sometimes it’s good to listen, and sometimes it isn’t, I can’t say you should always or exclusively listen to anyone because you have to listen to yourself. Only you know what feels best for you, don’t you think Darling?


And so it is….