When Nothing is Truly Something

Daniel Garner-Quintero, MA
Licensed Mental Health Counselor

My husband and I recently had the opportunity to see the new Christopher Robin movie which centers on the Winnie the Pooh stories with which many of us grew up. It was incredibly sweet, nostalgic, and a wonderful reminder of some of life’s most important lessons! If you haven’t yet seen it, I can’t recommend it enough. The movie itself lingered with me through the following week and it seemed prescient given what some of my clients were wanting to discuss in therapy – it’s funny how that happens…
Regardless, what I wanted to share today was a quote from the movie that I am hoping will resonate:
“When I’m going somewhere and I wait, somewhere often comes to me.” -Pooh Bear
Have you ever felt lost? Stuck? Confused? Trapped?
Ever been in a situation where you weren’t sure how to proceed? Felt like there was no correct step?
Ever felt hopeless? Wondered if it could or would get better?
You aren’t alone. In fact, many of my clients will, at some point, experience frustration at what feels like a stuck point. Often times, this manifests as an emotion which seems to persist – anxiety, depression, loneliness, etc. It’s incredibly painful to be in this place and what we often do is start thrashing around exasperated to make some kind of change – to improve our situation. To feel in control and less stuck.
Enter Pooh Bear.
What I encourage my clients to do in those moments is to stop thrashing, stop fighting, and stop resisting. That emotion, that stuck point, is not good/bad or right/wrong. It’s amoral. I try to teach clients to become scientists and explorers. Get curious. Like Pooh says, if you are trying to go somewhere, wait and see if it comes to you. Get curious about your experience. Write out questions about what you are feeling and try to answer them. Dig into that emotional data – I promise there is a reason it’s sticking around.
  • What am I feeling?
  • When did I start feeling it?
  • Where do I experience this feeling in my body?
  • Can I imagine a shape, taste, sound, flavor for this feeling?
  • Are there memories attached to this feeling?
  • How do I feel about this feeling?
  • How does this feeling feel about me?
  • If we could talk, what would we say to one another?
This curiosity increases our awareness around our own experience and will, most of the time, allow us to grasp the lesson we have yet to learn. This, of course, helps us to begin to move forward. Regardless of what you choose to do, please know that the LSRG team is happy to walk (or stand, sit, climb, fly, etc.) through whatever life is bringing your way. I’d like to leave you with one final Pooh Bear quote and hope you have an awesome weekend!
“Sometimes the thing to do is nothing.”

 

Sincerely,
Daniel Garner

Daniel