Sssssssshhhhhh Listen to the silence….

Can you hear that?

Well neither can I, isn’t it brilliant.

During my supervision today I spoke about how 2 of my clients had individually unintentionally, encouraged me to internally philosophise about the beauty of silence and how it has its place in the therapy room.

As an only child I grew up not saying very much to people, I spent my time programming rudimentary computers and thinking while being really shy and introverted.
Now however I still have children living at home, 1 of whom is still very young so its not too quiet at home anymore!

I still like my own company, time to reflect and bounce ideas around on the inside of my head, I make the most of any time I have to do it.

It also reminded me that I had recently watched a television series where famous people are given therapy.
I do not however watch it anymore for the ‘celebrity’ contained within but the therapist. Anytime I can observe another therapist work, I do as for me its a lovely way to see the style of others.
So I was watching the latest instalment where for the record the ‘celebrity’ was emotionally absent for the whole programme. There in body but not in spirit.

Well every time I sensed a silence was coming the therapist filled the gap with the same stock phrase and I was surprised how much I reacted to it.

I asked myself why is that gap being filled?
Because its for the telly?
Or because silence can be uncomfortable for the person who isn’t in charge of it?

All these recent revelations have caused me to think about why we don’t value silence.
Its awkward, jarring, not what we are taught to be comfortable with, we can’t control what we can’t see.

Then again it may be as therapists we don’t feel we are giving clients value for money if we don’t fill the time with the chatter.
Therapy is not cheap and in today’s austere times we must be doing our best to facilitate clients, just not at the expense of the silence.

While training I remember being told not to be afraid of the silence but it is not until we experience it ourselves and see it in practice that we can recognise our own fears of it and challenge our behaviour towards it.

So this week I have been challenged by it and am better and more rounded by it. My very own big boob lady moment watching a client in process while being completely silent and it didn’t feel strange at all.

If you are looking for a get rich quick scheme then being a therapist isn’t the profession to enter. It will push you, pull you in ways you never thought possible.

Its not just a job but a way of life and expanding of thinking, everyday I keep experiencing things that push me, challenge me and its bloody amazing.

So don’t be afraid of that silence, remember you don’t need to control everything, embrace that chaos and revel in it, not that you might listen to me just yet.

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