Yesterday’s teleconference with Susan Luff on the question, “Is Helping Overrated?” including a number of thought provoking comments by Susan. Here are a few I have been mulling over:
– Not all people find helping compelling. Some seem to have their radar tuned for it. They are on alert, on duty.
– To be an overfunctioner is to feel overresponsible, to do too much, to talk too much. It’s more than helping, more than being overworked. The key piece is an external focus, that draws one away from one’s own internal state.
– There’s a quality of invasiveness than can occur in overfunctioning. Sometimes, though not always, people resist our helpful efforts (in the medical world this is called noncompliance).
– Susan gave the example of an individual who began to manage his overfunctioning, and found he got depressed. He was taking up residence in himself, and having to feel that and be in it. “He landed where he really was.” At the same time, she said, when we stop overfunctioning so much, it frees up an enormous amount of energy for creative endeavors.
The recording of the teleconference is available. E-mail me at Margaret@margaretmarcuson.com, and I’ll send you the link.