Jessica dreams. Jessica creates. Jessica doubts. Jessica despairs.  

Her designs and insights often receive compliments and praise. The staff looks to her for creativity.

But, when she is alone and away from everyone, Jessica dims—losing faith in her abilities.  It’s happening more frequently. The better the project, the worse her outlook is getting.

Her friend, Nancy, senses something is happening when Jessica misses their before-work-coffee-time two weeks in a row. Wisely, Nancy schedules their coffee for Saturday, so there’s no deadline and listens as Jessica talks, and talks, and talks some more, about her fears and frustrations.

Nancy doesn’t like others “fixing” her, so she uses care after Jessica’s lengthy vent. Instead, Nancy asks three simple questions explaining that she wants to respect Jessica and not intrude.

She asks, “Jessica, here are three choices: Would you like me to hear you without further comment? Or, would you like me to be mindful for you through this time? Or, would you like to talk with you more about what you’ve shared?”

Jessica smiled gratefully, “Wow, thank you for asking, Nancy. So I have a choice?”

“Absolutely,” Nancy nodded. “I treasure you and your words. Your safety is my number one concern.”

“Thank you so much. You know, it helped me so much to talk everything through. It’s like a load lifted off of me. I think that’s all I need. Thank you again, Nancy. You encourage me! Oh, and a touch of your great mindfulness will help this week too! Thanks!”

Transfer of Learning: What are your takeaways from this story? Where else would you like to share it?

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Fourth of July re-Arghs, me hearty!
Cap’n John

John Parker, M.A.
Professional Development Adventure Guide
Merced, California

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