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  • Writer's pictureMellissa Hamley

"Chin up" - Why your words matter



This might be a generational phrase, but I often hear people say “chin up” when someone is speaking about something that is bothering them. There may be other similar phrases too, and I often find myself rather annoyed with them.


There are many reasons someone might say something like that. It may be that feel uncomfortable with the topic of discussion, or that they don’t know what else to say. I understand that. Mental health is a wide and sometimes complex thing. You don’t have to have the answers.


Sometimes, all the person is asking, is to be heard, without judgement. A powerful tool in therapy is the ability to listen without any personal agenda or judgement about the person and their circumstances. Just being heard is so deeply meaningful. Sometimes they are aware of the solution to their problem, and just need to vent to allow them to process their own feelings about the situation, before they take action.


If someone says something like ‘chin up’, it can come across as dismissive and that they perhaps don’t care about them enough to listen. It can also seem like this person is minimising their issue. This can lead to the other person berating themselves for not being able to ‘suck it up’ (which is another phrase I’m not fond of!).


What phrases do you hear that frustrate you? Let me know in the comments.

If you’re someone who is struggling to find that non-judgemental ear, don’t struggle alone, contact me now.

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