Imagine you just shared something that is really bothering you (make up a scenario). How would you feel hearing these comments?  What makes them feel validating or invalidating?  What would you like to hear instead?

  • “That would make me nervous too.”
  • “You’ll be fine.”
  • “That’s it? From the way you’re talking I thought it was much worse.”
  • “You sound so nervous. What can I do to help?”
  • “Given that so much is riding on this, it makes sense that you’re feeling confused.”
  • “At least it’s not ____________.”
  • “So many people go through this. You’ll be fine too.”
  • “Just put a smile on your face and tough it out.”
  • “You can’t let anyone know you are concerned.”
  • “It sounds like you’ve been through a tough time with this.”
  • “Why didn’t you tell me earlier. We could have worked through this together.”
  • “Don’t worry; things will work out.”
  • “It’s not that big of a deal.”
  • “You know what you should do…”
  • “I know exactly how you feel.”
  • “I hear you.”
  • “When that happened to me, I did …”
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