07 Feb How to support those around you
At Bird, we do a tonne of teaching around being emotionally aware. We give tools and strategies that help people to feel their emotions, and to let them go rather than suppress them or ruminate on them.
What can happen, when one is emotionally aware, is that emotions can come up quite strongly. But with the right tools and self-awareness, those emotions don’t tend to stick around all that long. Alain de Botton at the School of Lifesays that emotions, when felt, only stick around for 15 minutes at a time. We are made to be with, process and let go of emotions.
So what to do when a colleague, a friend, a family member is feeling particularly emotional? Historically (and sometimes still currently when I’m not feeling 100% resilient myself) I would try and fix the situation for those around me. Fix the situation and make them better, often to not a great effect.
In truth, when someone is feeling an emotion they don’t really need you to make the situation better for them. What we need, when we’re feeling an emotion, is for someone to say, ‘I’m here, that sounds really tough, is there anything you need from me?’ And to have the courage to just sit with someone who is in tears, or feeling enraged, or feeling overwhelmed.
Dr Brené Brown has this great video on empathy that explains it beautifully.
When we know that emotions don’t stick around forever, and we take the pressure off ourselves to fix the challenges those around us are facing, we actually become much better at being supportive of others.
With love as aways, Hannah and Team Bird
PS. We have availability for March onwards to deliver resilience workshops to your team. Get in touch to hear more.