Besides being a bartender, I'm also, pretty much, a therapist. People come in the restaurant by themselves, they sit down and they share their secrets, struggles or happiness. I've always wondered what it is that makes a stranger talk to another stranger with no filter. The information that I've often received from these individuals were obviously buried thoughts. What pushes someone to share and communicate in all secrecy is the loss of identity. He or she knows that they'll never see me again unless they want to and they have the advantage to know where to find me. Lucky for these people, I'm understanding, absolutely non judgmental and a good listener. Sometimes I like to think that I made them feel better or gave them a missing piece to their journey. My ability to connect to someone else at times leaves me breathless because it's easy for me to get on the same radio station of energy. I can sense and feel what certain people are going through internally. I've met people that changed my life in ways that they don't even know. At first I'd look at them and secretly make assumptions...and they would blow me away. I've met from today's pirate who used to hide pieces of Art who looked like your librarian, To military survivor with heartbreaking reality of life who looked like a simple married man, To the bad boy with Tattoos who was working 9-5 job and was going through a tragic loss and yet smiling and laughing. They confided me in a such a pure way that they've truly made me realize that you never know what someone's story is or what they are going through just by looking at them. My point is that it is our nature to have the need to "let it out" and express what goes through our mind to someone. Some people don't believe how beneficial it really is to listen to the sound of your own voice. You can even do little exercises with yourself by saying words of affirmation out loud, or writing on a piece of paper what your "destructive thoughts" are, cross them out and write what the rational view would be. We tend to over think and lose sense of reality which is not as chaotic as our own thoughts. That's when you have to thank all these scriptwriters for going for it in the dramatization of everything! If you are going through something, making the decision to go through therapy is very helpful. There can be little details about your childhood that you've never even thought about that created a pattern of problematic behaviors in your adulthood. You can Find these clues, understand, cope and make changes by speaking out loud to someone else. Fixing things is not always the immediate solution, sometimes you need to step back, visualize and then, attack. Someone I met who's an amazing advice giver told me that support can be destructive in a sense, or push someone further away because even though your first reaction is to support and lift up someone by telling them to keep going, it's still putting expectations on them. With the wrong timing, it can be heavier than just someone who listens and doesn't tell you what to do, how to do it or what to say. Just being present in the moment and letting that person come up with their own answers. Usually, in my experience, answers to your questions are like sudden whispers. They always come at some point. I have a tendency to always "feel bad" and to be quite a perfectionist, I used to get extremely upset if I did something the wrong way. Not because I did this to myself, but I might disappoint someone. Funny thing is that, whenever I went through therapy for little tragedies in my life, my therapist pointed out why I might be that way. I remember when I was younger, every time I had to make my suitcase to go on trips with my father, (very, very often) he would ask me to make sure that my suitcase wouldn't be too heavy. My mother was so worried that I didn't have everything to look like the perfect daughter that she would pack, and over pack my suitcase. I'd always feel so bad with my heavy suitcase towards my dad but also towards my mother who constantly wanted me to look perfect, not in a superficial way but more of a control on how to present myself. I won't even start mentioning her pet peeves about manners. I'm just thankful for everything she taught me. I would've never been able to think of these little things as something with a bigger meaning if someone who heard me say it hadn't point it out. These things created patterns where I rarely put myself in a situation where I might fail, or If I do I'll obsess over it, for instance dancing and the perfectionist in me is extremely hard on myself. On the other hand, the loving person that I am, always puts people first. For example, I got pulled over with a suspended license picking up my ex, all I could think of was that he was just getting back from vacation and I was putting him through this. My friend looked at me, baffled and reminded me that I might go to jail, that I should feel bad about what might happen to me! guess what, Me, myself and I hadn't even crossed my mind. I just felt bad. I failed. Yeah, I know I'm just really giving like that. No jail that night, no towing...just a ticket. Phew. I know I'm super charming.
Anyway, these are little things that because I spoke to a stranger who got to know me in a safe place she helped me tremendously to understand depths of my little destructive ways and put a stop to them and helped me become a happier person. If you need to talk, do it. Write in a diary or pick a friend who's bright enough to guide you, simply listen and perhaps analyse a few things about who you are. Or else, find a therapist, psychologist. A lot of them are free of charge because they need hours under their sleeve to finish their masters or whatever they're doing....It takes time to have an appointment, but talking is good cure for yourself and others.