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Re: Sorting out my session today annierose

Posted by Dinah on November 12, 2007, at 17:26:59

In reply to Sorting out my session today, posted by annierose on November 12, 2007, at 17:01:31

I think I can see what she's saying, although I *feel* more what you're saying.

My therapist and I were talking about the "Do you like me" question the other day. His tendency is to answer it outright. But we spoke of the tendency of some therapists to turn the question into one of why it's important to the client. I thought it was self evident that if you were going to make yourself that vulnerable to another person that it was natural to know that not only did they care about you and want the best for you, but they liked you as a person. My therapist does often say that if he didn't like me, I'd have picked up on it long ago and left.

On the other hand, since I ask it not infrequently, he usually makes me answer it myself.

As far as ego boosts, I'm thinking that there are two separate factors.

Most people do love ego boosts. What's not to love? What person wouldn't want to hear that (s)he looks special on a special evening? Or that a job is well done? I think the only people who really wouldn't like those things are the people who would think they were untrue because of low self esteem. It takes a certain amount of self esteem to take in positive remarks from others, doesn't it? I totally reject anything positive said about my looks for example, while I thoroughly enjoy ego boosts in other areas.

I guess the other factor would be what you feel like between ego boosts. If you live from ego boost to ego boost, and don't feel good about yourself if they're too far apart, that could be a problem to you. If you are cast into despair by a negative remark and into transports of delight by a positive one, you're giving way too much power to others. Power it would likely be safer to keep for yourself.

So would you say that the compliments you received made you feel good because they were outside acknowledgment of how nice you thought you looked? Did her reaction to your happiness make you feel awful? No wait. I think we should have a therapist exemption because they *do* have too much power over us, almost by definition. If someone had made a snide remark to you about your toilette, would you have been hiding for the rest of the evening?

It is nice to have an internal sense of your strengths and weaknesses, and an overall view that you're essentially worthwhile and loveable. Which you are. Period. It probably is also nice to listen enough to the input of others to be able to assess whether you think they might have a point and there are areas that you need to work on. Since we're all works in progress. Drat it.

But that's different from reveling in the occasional ego boost. Who doesn't like confirmation, in the words of Jerry Seinfeld, that they are as wonderful as their mother said they were.




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