Had lunch with a great friend today. She is really struggling with a great deal of change, all of it out of her control and a great deal of it impacting her partner and their relationship. She confessed that she gets frustrated, she yells, and because I know her so well, I knew the rest of the story about the guilt and self-beating that follows those exchanges. “He doesn’t deserve that.” No he doesn’t. And neither does she.
While I am always reluctant to whip a coaching session out of my pocket, there are times where a little tool, a little strategy can really help somebody. So I asked her if I could offer a strategy and then told her about The Watcher.
I suggested that the next time she feels that frustration bubbling up that she remember that her frustration is not all of her, and access some of that other part by looking at the frustration and the anger, that she observe the feeling. That she acknowledge it. That she say to it, “Oh, hey there. I see you anger. I see you’re frustrated. It’s okay. It’s okay to be angry. It’s alright.”
As we talked I felt her relax. We talked about how acknowledging those feelings might let them have what they need and how watching the emotion creates some space and time, so she may not have to act on the feeling. No action, another way to short circuit the guilt routine. Being The Watcher allows us to remember that we are not only what we are feeling at any given moment. We are not only any single moment. We do not have to go all in with a feeling in order to honor it and give it its moment. The Watcher can see the feeling, is compassionate, is sympathetic and lets us know it’s okay to feel, and that it’s okay to feel and just be, not act.
The Watcher, that’s good magic.