Updated: Dec 14, 2022
Have you ever tried to fill a balloon with helium and it just would not stay inflated? We've all done it at some point. Redirected the helium from filling the balloons to filling our lungs, and then we begin to squeak like Mickey in the hopes of entertaining the people around us and getting some laughs. Every so often we get a balloon that will not stay inflated, no matter how hard we try. Usually after inspection, we find there's a hole that wasn't visible until we looked closely. It looked like the other balloons, felt like them, even had that funky rubber smell. Often times we find ourselves trying to be the helium in other people's lives, constantly trying to re-inflate them, but with little success. On the outside they look like everyone else. But like the balloon, they've got something that's preventing them from being who they were created to be. It could be any number of causes, and the person may not even know what the cause was or currently is, and no amount of our emotional helium will help them. These people need professional counseling, and sometimes we can be the catalyst that helps them realize that there's help out there. Coach and author Valorie Burton says that if we touch someone's emotional wound, and they wince, that person needs counseling. There's a time and place for offering encouragement, but having the wisdom to recognize when their needs go beyond our abilities, and helping them find the resources they need is the best course of action.