Creative Connections & Client Communications
Counseling Insights, September 30, 2009Words of Choice!
When we listen carefully, we hear a lot.
A recent client was inquiring about a grown grandchild, with quite a dramatically configured Saturn-Rx complex; I had to discuss this phenomenology within the boy’s father-relationship … but I was talking with the grandfather, not the young man himself. Whose perceptions would I use to anchor my observations?
The answer came easily as I listened to the grandfather speak with wise insight about the boy’s “rigid” home experience with the father. –In fact, the words “Rigid … rigidity” came up some 8 or 9 times in response to my discussion point about the situation. I pointed this out to my client, and much was registered within this observation.
A college teacher lady talked too often about her dominating mother [my client showed Saturn-rx square the Nodal axis; Uranus opposed the Midheaven on the angle]. Repeated references were made disparagingly into the mother’s behavioral profile. –I finally riveted the conversation on this point, this way: “Please tell me what you’re doing to manage this long-standing fear … this fear that you are becoming like your mother.”
And how often within Saturn-Rx discussions do we hear repeated word choice: “I know he really loved me … but…” We can hear this as “I hope he did; I needed him to” etc.
Asking a client, “What were the discussions at 17 about going on to further education?”, the question was avoided several times consecutively. The response became, “I think my parents were supportive but….” And extraneous material was presented instead. –Repeating the question three times elicited the exact same patter: “I think they were supportive but….”
Yes. So much is going on with our word choice, our subject references. Do we hear it?
Recall Freud’s discovery of the content power and utility of the “stream of consciousness”. The stream of consciousness is given form in communication by our word and image choices, even to freeing certain thoughts to get past long-term repression. –But we have to be part of the process too, listening creatively.
Observe how word choice –with concomitant value assessment—is tied to “The Neptune Eye-Flutter”, for example! [Please see “Notebook”, Archives immediately following the present essay, click on July 15, 1999.] The diffident nature will show most when speaking the first-person singular Pronoun, “I”. The veil of Neptune will flutter-filter the statement of self, threatening repression. This word of choice – I -- is trying its best, but it’s running an obstacle course!
In my opinion, Caroline Kennedy exposed herself to image enormous devaluation in a critical interview, widely publicized during her Senate campaign, in which she used the filler-phrase “Ya know” 46 times in 5 minutes!! That’s once every 6 or 7 seconds. The public surprise and discovery of this speech inadequacy helped to push her out of the competitive election race. –What are the insecurities hidden behind this fall-off in self-presentation? [Neptune rules her 3rd House of communication.]
And what’s not said…. People with high developmental tension involving the 2nd, 5th, 8th, and/or 11th House usually manifest difficulty with giving (and receiving) compliments. To give a compliment is awkward because one feels it diminishes oneself somehow! What results is a routined apartness from others; the bond of appreciation is missing.
Your client naturally will want to establish a good impression with you right off the bat; will look his/her best and say complimentary things at the outset of the consultation time together … just as one does going to someone’s home for dinner. If the niceties of self-ingratiation are missing … what is not being said reveals the developmental tension within the Fixed Cross of Houses.
Astrologers too often are deeply anxious about what they are saying, fearing criticism by the client(!). This blocks our ears, and, if there is the defensive smoke screen of jargon flying around, it’s all the worse… the client’s true voicing of reality is not heard.
Are you listening?
Next Update: October 31, 2009