The greatest gift of my training in psychiatry has been the ability my mentors nurtured in me to really listen to what people say. This is harder than it sounds.
It took me years to overcome the natural tendency to gloss over the very important things people say—the ones that might trigger anxiety or sadness or anger if focused upon clearly or at length.
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This avoidance of hearing messages that people convey is a very human reaction when what they are saying is almost too big to take to heart.
The same dynamic explains why people fail to recognize predators even in the face of much data that they are unsafe, why they fail to hear the desperation in the words of a loved one who later goes on to commit suicide, why they fail to internalize expressions of genuine (and boundless) love from another person and why they fail to follow-up with questions about true revelations another offers about his or her deepest feelings and most powerful experiences.
It is as if the mind and soul are fitted with shock absorbers triggered only by the biggest bumps in the road—a kind of onboard, on call denial—so that special focus is required to register them.
Read More: By Dr. Keith Ablow, Fox News