“She lets other people babble on, while giving away little about what she thinks.”
No this quote isn’t about me. I rarely let other people babble on, and I do, freely, give away what I think. When I do let someone babble on it’s for tactical purposes. It’s like watching a spider weave its net.
When I say “practical purposes” I don’t mean nefarious. Quite the opposite. Sometimes, particularly on the personal, it’s best to let someone just talk. Not only will you learn an awful lot about them (giving you a better grounding if they wish for your advice) but, most importantly, they will hear themselves speak. I realized this, and it was a revelation, when some years ago my doctor advised and subscribed grief counselling for me. I was in such despair to find a way out of my despair, for once I put all my scepticism to one side and gave it a shot.
To this day I can’t believe what happened during those fifty minutes sessions. Being engaged at all times, interested in everyone and everything, I tried to enter into dialogue with my “counsellour”. No doing. They will not be drawn. Though eventually he did relent and told me a little about his background before he went into counselling (teaching). But, on the whole, I did all the talking, pouring it all out – I HEARD myself aloud. I was, literally, listening to myself. If, in an hour, he interjected with a couple of questions that was a lot. Took two sessions of talking aloud – whilst being listened to – to clear the cobwebs, giving me some footing to handle my sorrow. An extraordinary experience. Also slightly eerie and vaguely unsettling since it was nothing like what normal human exchange is like.