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  • Writer's pictureDeric Hollings

IDK

 

Growing up without the Internet, adults lied to children quite a bit. In retrospect, I can understand why this may’ve been. Perhaps a parent chose the comfort of lying in contrast to the discomfort experienced when believing that the adult couldn’t bear the thought of being seen as ignorant.

 

If an adult had no clue about why sound doesn’t carry in space, one could simply make up an answer. In turn, the child who believed the disinformation would then echo the pseudo-knowledge to others.

 

As an example, I was told there were no harmful effects of eating snow ice cream (fresh snow mixed with vanilla extract, granulated white sugar, and evaporated milk). However, given my current understanding about atmospheric pollution and processed sugar, I suspect otherwise.

 

Perhaps if adults had learned to dispute their unhelpful beliefs about saying “I don’t know” (IDK), I could’ve been spared the stupidity of having regurgitated the lies I was told. Now, I use unconditional life-acceptance to keep from self-disturbing about things I was told in the past.

 

Nonetheless, my childhood wasn’t particularly unique. Apparently, lying to people was so prevalent that when I joined the Marine Corps I was taught to say when I didn’t know an answer, because so many Marines throughout the ages had misled other military members by making up answers.

 

In certain scenarios, lies could cost lives. For instance, if a staff noncommissioned officer asks a junior Marine about how many enemies lie ahead of a location when in combat, and the junior grade Marine lies when the answer is unknown, people could perish when advancing forward.

 

Therefore, Marines were taught to say IDK though to follow up with, “But I’ll find out the answer.” What I appreciated about the Corps’ initiative in this regard was that it afforded individuals to be open, honest, and vulnerable enough to admit ignorance.

 

Ignorance is merely the lack of knowledge or information, and is nothing of which to be ashamed. Everyone is ignorant about a great number of topics.

 

Interestingly, I’ve learned that some mental, emotional, and behavioral health care practitioners and life coaches appear to struggle with their beliefs about saying when they don’t have answers to posed questions. I’ve observed repeat scenarios of this nature on various forms of media (e.g., social).

 

As an example, an otherwise competent clinician may claim to know what a client’s dreams mean. While I have little doubt one can imagine, suspect, or guess about latent content of a client’s dreams, failure to admit that one doesn’t actually know seems a bit misguided to me.

 

It’s okay to simply say, “I don’t know.” There’s no shame in it. For prospective clients who search for a practitioner who truly isn’t a know-it-all, you’ve found me! I’ve no problem saying if I don’t know something, and will try to find answers if possible.

 

If you’re looking for a provider who works to help you understand how thinking impacts physical, mental, emotional, and behavioral elements of your life—helping you to sharpen your critical thinking skills, I invite you to reach out today by using the contact widget on my website.

 

As a psychotherapist, I’m pleased to help people with an assortment of issues ranging from anger (hostility, rage, and aggression) to relational issues, adjustment matters, trauma experience, justice involvement, attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, anxiety and depression, and other mood or personality-related matters.

 

At Hollings Therapy, LLC, serving all of Texas, I aim to treat clients with dignity and respect while offering a multi-lensed approach to the practice of psychotherapy and life coaching. My mission includes: Prioritizing the cognitive and emotive needs of clients, an overall reduction in client suffering, and supporting sustainable growth for the clients I serve. Rather than simply helping you to feel better, I want to help you get better!

 

 

Deric Hollings, LPC, LCSW

 

 

References:

 

Cookie_studio. (n.d.). What wrong you redhead curlyhaired young freak out complaining woman arguing shrugging dismay raise hands sideways puzzled questioned cringing bothered standing white background copy space [Image]. Freepik. Retrieved from https://www.freepik.com/free-photo/what-wrong-you-redhead-curlyhaired-young-freak-out-complaining-woman-arguing-shrugging-dismay-raise-hands-sideways-puzzled-questioned-cringing-bothered-standing-white-background-copy-space_24532324.htm#query=I%20don't%20know&position=0&from_view=search&track=ais&uuid=ec2fb4a8-77f6-47ca-9290-57b03198ee3f

Hollings, D. (n.d.). Blog – Categories: Disputation. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/blog/categories/disputation

Hollings, D. (2022, March 15). Disclaimer. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/disclaimer

Hollings, D. (2023, September 8). Fair use. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/fair-use

Hollings, D. (2023, October 12). Get better. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/get-better

Hollings, D. (n.d.). Hollings Therapy, LLC [Official website]. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/

Hollings, D. (2022, November 8). Information overload. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/information-overload

Hollings, D. (2023, May 18). Irrational beliefs. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/irrational-beliefs

Hollings, D. (2023, September 19). Life coaching. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/life-coaching

Hollings, D. (2022, November 1). Self-disturbance. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/self-disturbance

Hollings, D. (2022, December 2). Low frustration tolerance. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/low-frustration-tolerance

Hollings, D. (2023, March 11). Unconditional life-acceptance. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/unconditional-life-acceptance

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