The important point here is to give up all hopes for results – for a cure, for a healing relationship, for feeling good when the patient begins to radiate recovery, for thinking of oneself as a gifted therapist, for gratefulness from the patient or his family. Or the converse – this is a hopeless case, nothing will happen, this therapy is useless, I am a failure. All of these may come and go, even within one three – hour shift. None of this is important to the conduct of basic attendance . They are all thoughts and emotions that are part of one’s work with people. (…)
One’s work with a patient contains steps forward and steps backward. It is not as simple as treatment going well or poorly. There is no “good” therapy session or “bad” one . It is more like the seasons, which are constantly changing , or like a marriage, which refuses to stand still.
Letting be means we are practicing a sense of accommodation, without trying to change the course of things into what you think they should be. Because of the largeness of this attitude , it is also a state of quiet mind where anything can be accepted. It is a nonjudgmental openness to whatever is happening in the patient’s mind, and in your own.
of Edward M. Podvoll
Shambhala Publications – November 2003