WASHINGTON—Saying the method yields positive results almost immediately, a coalition of leading therapists said Thursday that most of the personal issues people experience could be resolved if they would simply stop being so weird all the time.
On issues ranging from relationship problems and feelings of anxiety to more specific concerns like stress in the workplace and self-consciousness in social situations, the mental health experts asserted that not acting weird about every little thing could prove hugely beneficial for millions, in many cases eliminating their problems altogether.
“Clients come in to talk to me about things in their lives that are making them unhappy, and nine times out of 10 they could resolve the issue just by not being such a weirdo,” said Dallas-area psychotherapist Jesse DeStefano, adding that everyone has a choice whether to go through life as a total freak or not, and that those who don’t are healthier and more productive. “The process is very simple. When you start thinking about something weird—at work, at home, on a date—stop doing that and think about normal things instead. It’s really quite easy.”
“Once you start focusing on normal stuff, you’ll find the situation improves instantly,” he continued.
Asked to elaborate on this method, DeStefano said it could be broken down into three simple steps: Recognize that most people don’t act the way you do, ask yourself what a regular person would do in your situation, and then do that. According to the therapist, people could save themselves a lot of trouble if they would follow this approach before they open their mouths and start to say something that makes them sound completely wacko.
He added that by not being weird it was possible to lead a happier and more fulfilled life, noting that everyone will see you as normal person because you will be acting like a normal person.
“Look, whatever issues you may have, your best bet is to get up, go outside, and stop behaving weirdly,” said Eva Perlmutter, a clinical psychologist who practices in Boston. “I could talk all day about negative thought patterns, social dynamics, and interpersonal skills, but honestly, you’d be better off taking a good look around and observing how the vast majority of other people just act normal. Seriously, they’re pretty much all around you.”
“I really don’t know what else to tell you,” she added. “If you’re having weird thoughts, then don’t have them anymore.”
She went on to ask why, if people have things that are bothering them, they would ever think that being all weird about it could possibly help.
“Just don’t be a freak, especially when you’re around other people,” DeStefano said. “Don’t be a freak around your friends, your family, your coworkers—and certainly don’t be a freak around people you’ve just met. It’s not even a good idea to be a freak in front of your therapist.”
“Seriously, do you have any idea how weird it is to pay someone to listen to you talk about your problems?” he continued. “That’s probably the weirdest part of all.”