Wednesday, April 2, 2008


In January of this year, I gave a talk to the Psychiatry Grand Rounds, an interdisiciplinary group of professionals who serve children and adults with mental health disorders. The talk went well, and we had a lively discussion about SEEKERS, AVOIDERS, SENSORS and BYSTANDERS in the work place, in our client populations and in ourselves and family.

When I returned to my office, I had the greatest email from someone who had been at the Grand Rounds. But is was not from one of the interdisciplinary team members, it was from the Media Technician who set up and ensured all our sound, slides etc. were in proper order for the talk. He gave me generous permission to share his comments [thanks!]

"Hello Dr. my name is David and I was the tech this afternoon on your event. I just want to say that it was awesome. I know that you are busy and my field is not in the area in which you spoke on however I have a question. Is it possible for someone to personally have the characteristics of an Avoider or a Sensor yet put on the face of a Seeker? Maybe personally comfortable as the Avoider yet professionally having to mask as the seeker? Perhaps a new genera called the "Faker". I was just curious. Again great presentation and thank you for your time."

If you are reading this blog, you know that one of my goals is for the information in Living Sensationally to become 'kitchen table talk', concepts that everyone understands and can use to explain themselves and understand others. Well David's comments are a clear step in that direction, and I told him that he made my day!

And here is what I told him in return:

"Of course you can do what you explained... if you like most of your job duties, but you have to put on your 'game face' to complete certain tasks, that is perfect. Most of us can rally resources to do what is needed. The core of you as a sensory being is determined by what you have to do before and after the 'game' face time... if it is really you, there wont be big differences; if it is 'game' face, you will retreat before and after to regroup and recalibrate.

This is actually a great strategy... the important thing is to understand that you are doing it for an appropriate purpose... not because something is wrong with you. You are making conscious choices to act on your own behalf! In your case, when you are making sure that a presenter's talk goes off without a hitch... [and we presenters appreciate you for both your skill and your attention to us] you need to rally your social resources to complete the task. Then you can collect yourself in a more comfortable [from an Avoider or Sensory point of view] context like a dark room with your computer and no one to bother you."

Keep that KITCHEN TABLE TALK coming!


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sensory one said...

I will definitely come to your BLOG! Thanks for coming to mine. This info is so fun and helps people be more aware, more mindful about their actions.