Series: Trends Identified in Therapy from Grow Wellness Group Therapists

I have worked with individuals, couples, and families over the years, and one of the continuous themes that remains at the forefront of sessions is communication. But more specifically, how do I communicate with others when I do not know what they are asking from me? It is understandable why some people might feel uncomfortable navigating another’s feelings in conversation, especially if this is was not a skill set that was ever taught or demonstrated to an individual. However, there is a simple way to approach this situation. It all goes back to the listener (you) trying to get clarification, but also for the speaker to recognize what they are asking of you to begin with. In short, here is a helpful trick I recommend to my clients:

Asking, “What is it you need from me right now?” and expressing the following:

Do you need:

  • To vent?
  • Advice?
  • Validation?
  • Support?
  • To just listen?

These questions will help you as the listener identify what it is you are being asked to offer to the speaker. It also gives the speaker an opportunity to think about what it is they are trying to seek in a conversation.

If you feel like you do not know how to answer in conversations, I hope that these questions will help you build a connection with whom you are speaking to!

If you would like to learn more or desire support, we are always here to help you Grow.