We don’t always know what to do when someone needs us to be there for them. This is all normal, but it is something worth putting our time into in order to develop this special ‘skill’.
In my case, before my grandmother passed away I did not know how to deal with the change that was about to present itself. The thought that she could take her last breath any day made me really awkward around her.
‘Holding space’ is when you stick with a person throughout their struggle without passing any judgements.
To do this, we have to do whatever possible to treat them as if nothing unusual is going on, like they are the same person no matter what.
Don’t try to tell them what to do or make moral judgements, just give them your love and support.
Instead of criticizing them, give them the courage to believe in themselves and make their own choices.
We’ve all had to do this at times but don’t worry yourself too much if you aren’t an expert. This is not something you can achieve overnight.
Holding space takes time and effort. There are so many things that we ourselves have to learn in order to be able to do it well.
We have to know how to give advice, but give it humbly, we have to ensure that the person trusts us to not hurt them.
Our egos should never be able to get in the way of this process and at no point should we overwhelm the person with more assistance than they can deal with at the time.
This takes a lot of practice as every single person and every single situation will not be the same.
It will always be easier with some people and harder with others.