Rolling with Ambivalence

Lately, I’ve been dealing with some marked moments of ambivalence. I am the type of person who likes systematic and also logical conclusions to challenges that arise. As much as I thrive in an “on the fly” environment, I’d much rather use my energy and time preparing and already having a plan that will immediately go into effect when a crisis arises. Not too long ago, I posted an article that discussed the rise in ambivalent relationships. I’m learning that I struggle with having meaningful and close relationships with people who are always ambivalent. It’s not that they’re bad people, it’s just that my time is wasted as they go back and forth about making a small decision. I personally like having plenty of time to make decisions. I like to sleep on it and to analyze the decision from all sides before I come to a conclusion. However, when the need arises, I can also make split second decisions and be ok with that. Ambivalence is all around us and I see it on a regular basis in my job as a therapist. While someone may say that they want to change, they still refuse to make the necessary changes in their life. This can be frustrating on the part of both the client and the therapist. It’s hard to help someone who can’t even define what they want. It’s even harder to help someone who refuses to change unless all conditions are just right. I’ve learned that many times people in places of ambivalence don’t want your help. They want to be noticed. This presents a challenge that can be frustrating due to the fact that you can’t make anyone’s decisions for them. They have to be personally invested in the process 100% before any true and lasting work can be done.

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