The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of those depths.” Elisabeth Kubler-Ross
One of the extremely difficult moments for caring people is when they watch their loved ones in pain and feel unable to do anything to help them. With this guide of ours, you’re just a few steps away from decreasing the weight of their pain and healing those friends and family members of yours who have been suffering in silence, or loudly, and cannot find a way out.
Let them talk
To begin with, you must outline their problems and causes of pain. You must let them talk, and you must listen. You have to be patient and let them spill out all their bottled emotions without judgment. Do not interrupt them and let them feel comfortable talking to you.
Be Kind and compassionate
It is not easy to be the listening ear because you’ll be tempted all the time to jump in and point out mistakes. But this is not the right time to do it, so cool off and be compassionate to whatever they say. A person who is in pain strongly believes that they’re suffering the harshest of emotions, so _at this stage_ you just pat their shoulders and nod your head to their problems, this is all you are asked to do.
Words of admiration and motivation
When it is finally your time to speak, make sure you start with listing all their pleasant traits. Positivity is highly needed because at those hard times they can only see themselves as unhappy, unlucky and unworthy! It is your role to deliver all the positive expressions such as, “I admire your strong will”, “You have always been the sweetest “, “I love how you express yourself”, “I believe in your strength”, etc. Make sure that whatever you’re emphasizing is the quality your friend misses the most about themselves.
Talk them through
After you had an overview of their problem, you need to break it into mini realities to make it easier for them to achieve healing. This also helps them see the problem less magnified and work through the phases one by one. For example, if their problem is about an unfaithful partner, you gotta analyze every stage; and try to highlight that, yes maybe, they were not fit for each other, but the relationship has helped them grow and become the person they are now. By the time you are through with this, they might end up forgetting about the betrayal and focusing more on the qualities gained from this hard experience.
Distract them now
It is now the time to distract them towards someone else’s pain. This gives them the break they need and helps them feel useful again; by caring about someone else’s problem. It is not about escaping the hardship, but you are rather showing them that life is full of problems, and we can experience all kinds of emotions. Remember that you are not a therapist, and your role is only to listen and comfort them. Do not feel obliged to solve their problems. Issues of the heart usually take longer than we expect, so if you feel that their problems are more serious than your ability to heal them, guide them to seek a professional consultant.
Do something they love
Enough with the crying and heart spilling. It is the time to watch a nice movie, visit your favorite place and devour your preferred pasta. Let them choose what they want to do. If they rejected the idea, ask them to trust your surprise and take them somewhere you know will make them happy.
Caring is not about good times only. True friendships and blood bonds are truly examined in times of hardships. Be there for the ones you love and care for and guide them through whatever good there is in them. This in itself will bring you a lot of contentment and love.
“Strength and growth come only through continuous effort and struggle.” Napoleon Hill