“People never fail to bring up topics that reflect how they are feeling at the moment, and they deliver them in a way to impact the situation,” says Emanuel H. Rosen, M.D. in “Think Like A Shrink” (Fireside Books)
“Consciously, they may not realize that they are being so expressive. Their words may seem no more than chitchat or revelatory description. Nonetheless, there is always a less conscious desire behind every delivery and expression. Remember, people communicate because they want results!”
What results does the speaker want? Ask yourself how what they are saying makes you feel. Trusted? Manipulated? Wiser? Or are you bored? Whatever you feel is a direct response to the speaker’s conscious or unconscious intention.
The first question, I ask myself in such a situation is why is this person telling me this? Then you may want to question why the speaker is trying to make you feel this way.
A shrink would ask, “How does this make you feel?” They want you to reveal another layer of intentions ... and another ... and another. A counselor does not want to give away his own feelings about a matter until he has all the information attainable.
I use human-potential processing techniques, which are very close to the way my psychologist and psychiatrist friends work with their clients in therapy. And even with all the information on the table, in counseling a client or having lunch with a friend, I find a way to spin the conversation into additional questions. As I say in my Metaphysical Counseling Manual, “Answer with questions, because they must reach their own insights.” As I am listening, I am reading their somatotype, monitoring their body language, reading their face, judging how they relate to the world (visual, auditory or kinesthetic), and I’m listening to the words between their words.
The other day, over breakfast, a male friend brought up the subject of women and said he thinks they’re all crazy.
“And how do crazy women make you feel?”I asked.