DBT Diva: DEAR MAN Skills

Today in DBT group, we covered the Interpersonal Effectiveness "DEAR MAN" skills.
 
As you can see from the image above, the acronym stands for:

 

Describe
Express
Assert
Reinforce
 
(stay) Mindful
Appear Confident
Negotiate
 
(From Interpersonal Effectiveness Handout 8: Guidelines for Objectives Effectiveness: Getting What You Want, from Skills Training Manual for Treating Borderline Personality Disorder by Dr. Marsha Linehan)
 
Our group therapist asked us if there is a role model that we look up to in terms of someone who exhibits these skills and who we would like to emulate - in real life or in fiction.
 
My instant response was yes: the character Jane Bingum on Lifetime's "Drop Dead Diva."  Jane, a savvy, quirky lawyer is played by the talented actress, Brooke Elliott.  The premise of the show is a bit fantastical: a beautiful, super slim aspiring model named Deb ends up in a car accident and passes away. Once in heaven, she manages to get herself back to earth, but ends up in the body of plus-size attorney Jane. 
 
Watch Drop Dead Diva
online through Amazon
Upon reading the description one day on Netflix, I thought, "This is probably total cheese, but it also seems very non-triggering. I guess I'll watch an episode."  I've been addicted ever since.
 
The show is, for the most part, lighthearted, non-triggering, and...there's that word again...quirky, and I love it.
 
As Deb navigates through the world as a mix of her former self and Jane, we watch a woman discover who she really is.  
 
I love watching her implement the DEAR MAN skills, and I hope to one day exude the confidence that her character so eloquently displays.
 
Jane is articulate at communicating her thoughts, especially at the workplace (Describe), she communicates her feelings (Express) but is also willing to hold them back when expressing them would be inappropriate or potentially hurtful to others, she stands up for what she believes and gently presses her point of view when she isn't being hear (Assert), and she describes potential consequences of not getting her way (Reinforce).
 
She stays mindful of what her objectives are (Mindful) and doesn't allow herself to be swayed by obstacles, in court, especially, she carries herself in a professional, controlled, and effective way (Appear Confident). Even with all of this going for her, she is not completely black or white. She realizes that sometimes she needs to give a little in order to get what she wants (Negotiate).
 
How about you?  Is there a person in your life, on TV, or in a movie that is the epitome of what you strive to be?  Do you emulate them in any way?


Thanks for reading.
More Soon.
 
 
 
PS - Want to take an online class with me to learn DBT Interpersonal Effectiveness Skills like DEAR MAN? Click here to learn more.

1 comment:

  1. I LOVE this!!! I'm also hooked on DDD! Your blog is AMAZING and I can relate to every post. Thank you for doing this. I hope to be as brave as you are someday.

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