I was listening to a Calm Meditation the other day, and it reminded me of something I have wanted to talk about. The meditation was about holding space for someone who is hurting or in need.

All I Want for Christmas is to Vent

There are times when I am having a rough day, or something happens that I need to get off my chest. My best friend (who is a man) is a fixer. He loves me and wants to fix whatever is wrong with me. His intentions are lovely, and he has a big heart, but what I need more than someone trying to help is just a listing ear so I can feel heard. Many of us just want to vent or to be able to express and feel our emotions, and we aren’t really looking for a solution to the problem. That may sound odd, but it is true.

It’s Hard Not to Want to Jump in and Help

I have been on the other side as well. When a friend or family member is hurting, it is natural to want to help to take away their pain. But sometimes the most loving way to help is to hold space for what they are going through and listen. Be there and say very little; just let them know you are there and that you care.

I have a daughter, and one day she showed up on my doorstep in tears because of a work-related problem. I felt compelled to jump in and fix it for her, but instead, I held her while she cried, and then I bought us some fancy salads for dinner. It was the best way to handle it for both of us. When you love someone, it’s hard sometimes not to want to jump in and help instead of just holding space for them.

Try to Just Be with Them and Try Holding Space

The next time a good friend or family member needs you, try to be with them and their pain without offering suggestions or trying to help. They will remember how wonderful you were in just letting them be, feel what they need to feel, and working through it on their own but at your side.

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