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Friday, January 7, 2011

"All about me" and the Bach flower Heather

Have you ever found yourself stuck in the grocery line, on the telephone, or in a parking lot "talking" which means "listening" to someone go on and on about their complaints, condition, or story? Usually this experience is made more memorable and uncomfortable if the whole time you are thinking about how late you are going to me or how much you need to find a bathroom! No matter what you do to try and break away-the other person just doesn't seem to get the fact that you are no longer, maybe never were, interested in listening. That type of talkative, pre-occupied with self person, "all about me person", describes the Heather state. I try not to take that personally! I don't think my parents had that in mind when they named me.

Heather is one of the lesser used or recommended of the 38 Bach Flower essences. Perhaps this is because of the difficulty in describing the need for it in a positive way. It is also extremely difficult to self-diagnose the need for Heather.

Heather is a state not a soul condition. It is a state that develops once people become lonely. They react to their loneliness by obsessively talking about themselves to anyone that will listen or at least stay put! They feel that if they keep talking you will stay with them and fill their sense of loneliness and they usually have little idea that you not interested in their concern. They often will hold on to your arm and stand very close to you as they talk in an effort to keep you close.

The Heather state is sometimes a way to react to life's chronic problems. People sometimes talk obsessively about a divorce, a bereavement, an ailment, their job, a friend or colleague they are having difficulties with, or financial woes. Usually this happens when they have lost hope in improving the situation although they are usually not conscious of that as the cause of their self-concern. It can happen when anxiety takes over their usual sense of optimism.

Taking the Bach remedy Heather, helps balance that anxiety and concern so that a person can become as good a listener as they are a talker. In this balanced state when they are able to engage in a two-way conversation, they are likely to find friends that want to be with them and the loneliness is removed. As people move out of the Heather state they actually become very good friends because they are able to help others with a renewed understanding of what it is like to be in a difficult situation. Rather than continuously talk about their own situation they are able to be selfless and understanding of other people's problems. The "neediness" of the person is replaced with a healthy understanding of what it takes to be a good friend. Balanced once again, the person who went through a Heather state is able to put their own suffering to use by empathizing with others.

Anyone, and probably all of us, suffer from the Heather state at many points in our lives. I understand why it seems to be a lesser used remedy. As I type this I hope none of my friends mis-interpret my blog and worry that I am talking about them! I think part of being a friend is providing that listening ear knowing that there is a good chance the roles will soon be reversed. Perhaps being a good friend could also include knowing when your friend could use a little Heather!

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