Dancing With Your Brain 2: Feeling “Felt”


Wow… after reflecting on yesterday’s second session of Dan Siegel’s Master Class, I realize that that feeling of amazement comes from the idea that we really are “dancing” with our brains through this particular course. It’s taken me a little while to process all that I learned in his one-hour webinar (which never really seems to be long enough for a conversation with Dan!) because I found so many aspects of his talk so intriguing.

First, this idea about feeling “felt” is so relevant to everyday life as well as to therapeutic work. There’s a very clear distinction between when a person is really there with you in the room--when their mind is clearly elsewhere, it’s as if they’re not with you at all--they may nod, smile, or gesture appropriately, but you don’t feel “felt.” In the therapy world in particular, it seems that clients’ perception of that sense of connection is vital to the effectiveness of treatment.

I also really love the idea of being “open” without being restricted by judgments. It’s something that’s so beautiful about children specificially, who don’t have so much experience to guide their in-the-moment judgment of what’s around us. I think we, as adults, have to use our and skills to better understand whatever comes our way, but we also have to actively try to take a step back and appraise situations based on what’s directly in front of us, rather than making assumptions based on the past.

For me, the most interesting part of the webinar was the “No / Yes” exercise. It was funny to me because I actually did this same exercise with Dan in a workshop during the 2010 Symposium. As soon as he began repeating “No,” I realized what would most likely come next. However, that didn’t stop “No” from affecting me just as powerfully as it did the first time around!

There’s just something about hearing the word “No” with all of its related negative connotations, with such a deep tone that emanates rejection, that’s overwhelming even though it’s such a basic word. And then when “Yes” follows, there’s, at least for me, an immediate sense of relief. It’s like immediately receiving an unexpected gift. There are some other great comments about this specific exercise as posted by many of you on our Comment Board.

Well, an hour may not feel like enough time with Dan, but that’s why it’s so wonderful that we have other opportunities to continue reflecting with each other. Remember to read and participate in our Comment Board, and as always, feel free to comment here on the blog, on our Facebook, and on our Twitter. Once again, I can’t wait until next Thursday!

09.24.2010   Posted In: NETWORKER EXCHANGE   By Jordan Magaziner
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