August 9th, 2010
I was at the dentist today getting my teeth cleaned and the hygienist and I were chatting about our kids. We were talking about how, at a certain point, it does no good to strategize for them – especially when they aren’t interested in our point of view.
She then was describing how her daughter, who has an hour commute, calls on the way to work most every day to talk about “this, that and the other thing”. I laughed remembering how I used to do the same thing with my Mom when I was in my 20’s and how my two boys answer most questions pretty straightforwardly – there is NO “this, that and the other thing” with them.
Which also made me laugh because “this, that and the other thing” is a pretty common way of describing what’s going on with us a lot of times.
But, the problem with describing things generally like this or in a rambling way is twofold:
- We may not know what we really want or need
- Someone else may not know what we want them to do or say to them
Here’s an example.
I was talking on the phone with my friend Janet who was telling me about “this, that and the other thing”. There wasn’t room for me to get a word in edge-wise other than an uh-huh or a quick question. Janet wasn’t interested in what I had to say – or so it seemed. I actually never got around to asking her because she had to go.
I’m not sure if there was anything in particular that Janet wanted me to know about or whether she was asking me to do something.
What I do know is that though I felt engaged with her story and interested in the details, I wished there was some room for me to share what was going on in my world.
The truth is – I never asked her to listen to me so I can’t know what would have happened. And that’s no one’s fault.
So, what does this have to do with ‘this, that and the other thing”?
Here’s the point.
When we talk about things in a general way to other people when we really want them to know something specific, it’s difficult to get our needs met. In terms of taking care of your health, in my humble opinion, there is no place for “this, that and the other thing”.
There is a huge need for sharing specifics about what’s not working with us and what we want help with. Here’s a way to do this so your healthcare needs can be met in a way that works for you.