What is it?
I’ve been seeing the term HOLDING SPACE in articles and for some reason it resonated with me. I wasn’t even sure what it meant so of course, I Googled it.
Basically, holding space means that you allow yourself to be with another individual without trying fix them, judge them, win their affection or affect any kind of outcome.~Anna Holden
It means it’s okay to say, “Wow. That sucks.” It means you don’t have to have all the answers and you don’t have to fix anything.
If you can help, by all means do help. If you can’t, holding space gives you a way to be present regardless.
It’s empowering to know that holding space can be enough.
Letting go of judgement, Opening your heart, Allowing another to have whatever experience they’re having, and Giving your complete undivided attention to the situation/other person.~James Trolles
Holding space is not having to agree with decisions we think are wrong or not expressing genuine concern. It is not enabling someone to feel sorry for themselves.
I like this idea because it has been my recent experience if I’m going through something and people don’t know how to help or aren’t used to my current state of mind, they distance themselves. This is especially true if we take longer than people think we should to move through a situation. I’ve done it myself.
We feel helpless so we just stay away.
Holding space is the art of being with someone through their MIDDLE.~Angela Scott
Best I can tell it is simply being there. It is being a safe place for someone to say “I’m not okay” or “I’m struggling” or “This journey is wearing me out.”
One of the best examples I can think of is a moment 5 years ago when I was in a particularly dark place. It was a cold and icy night and some friends of mine asked if they could stop by. We did talk a little bit, but mostly they just sat with me and then they made me put on shoes and a coat and took me to eat. (I was losing weight from all of the stress.) They didn’t have any answers. What they had was love for me and a willingness to hold space.
At that moment the space they held seemed to keep the ceiling from falling in on me.
In the bible there is a story about the Israelites in the heat of battle. When Moses had his hands raised in praise to God, they would be winning. When he would let his hands fall, they would begin to lose. Aaron and Hur came and held up his hands because he could no longer do it by himself. Needless to say, the army was victorious.
May we be people who are willing to hold space for others. We are better together.