“Do you think self-discovery is lame and cheesy?” My counselor is all sincerity and seriousness, leaning her tiny frame back on the edge of her giant desk.
I resist the urge to laugh at the question, an urge I have to resist often in this office.
“No,” I say, looking at my thinking spot, the corner where the wall paint doesn’t quite meet the ceiling. “If I thought that, I wouldn’t be here.”
And I don’t do anything lame or cheesy, ever, I think and resist the urge to roll my eyes at myself. Another urge I resist a lot here.
As usual, she’s either ignorant of my inner monologue or just chooses to ignore it. I strongly suspect the second option. Because all good counselors have very high BS meters, as Brené Brown points out. In fact, now that I think about it, she probably resists the urge to roll her eyes a lot in here, too.
But this is a fairly normal interaction with my counselor. I say something that conflicts with what I’m doing in life, and she responds with a totally obvious, Duh! question.
“Do you think you’re failing in life?”
“Are you responsible for how other people feel?”
“Is it okay for you to need something from someone else?”
I hate counseling.
It’s the only place where I regularly pay someone to make me feel like an idiot. Normally, if someone shows me how dumb I’m being, I say, “Okay, we’re done here. Have a nice life.” But somehow I find myself on that giant leather couch every two weeks, paying for eye roll resistance training.
Because I need it. I need someone to tell me how dumb I’m being.
And because for every time she asks me a Duh! question, we have a moment where I bring up a totally new (to me) thought and she says something like, “Well, I was praying about that for you earlier today and here is what I came up with…”
And inevitably, it’s an amazing new thing that I never would have come up with on my own.
I’m starting to believe that the process of self-discovery requires both someone to remind us when we are disagreeing with ourselves, as well as to give us new ideas, new ways to think.
Do you have someone to ask you those eye roll questions and give you new ideas?