In times of stress, some part of you may still hold the belief that you can't be present for the stressor and survive. Some part of you may believe you have to go away. There are three things you can consider when attempting to intervene with the reactive pattern of shutting down: how you relate to the shutting down, access to self-confidence, and engagement. Read on for more.
When conflict or criticism occurs, we can notice two layers of meaning to create connection: the content and the needs the speaker is holding. When we are able to recognize this --and ideally engage open-heartedly, with curiosity, make clear requests, imagining what they want, no matter how their expression was framed -- we have more opportunity to support the longevity of our relationships, and to decrease our loneliness when together.
Our world is facing stressful times. And the more stress you experience, the less resourced you can become. But consider that you're not messed up, but rather, the challenges you bear is a response to manufactured environments and culture that are more hostile than they are kind towards our human souls and bodies. And so, let’s be clear. Let’s be discerning. Let’s be compassionate. Let’s pay attention.
Sometimes there are moments when empathy has no effect at all on one another. Why? One reason could be that our brains might be less receptive because of unseen forces that affect our nervous system and relationship with others.