The positive psychology movement, now decades old, was an important stimulus for recognising that we don't get well by studying ill-health. It's founder, psychologist Martin Seligman suggested that if you want to know underpins good health and recovery, study good health and recovery, and apply the learning to those who are not yet thriving.
Clients come into psychotherapy wanting to talk about what is not working. They want relief from symptoms and problems. As having an exquisite understanding of symptoms does not necessarily lead to healing, something more is needed.
The first job of psychotherapy is to establish what the client wants to have happen. Working with a clear outcome, clients can begin to embody their future, developing a multi-sensory experience of what it is they are moving towards. Knowing you are not there yet does not make it a good idea to study the deficit, it makes it an imperative to work out what will help to close the gap.
One joyful way of creating a compelling future is to work with Dilt's neurological levels (NLL). Exploring in increasing depth the way we want to show up in our life, the NLL alignment process engages all of the senses, including our creativity and sense of identity.
It works gently and deeply to support us in developing our capacity to imagine and so experience what we want, giving the brain the opportunity to wire together new patterns and pathways that result in new possibilities.
Metaphor offers a powerful way to express rich detail and meaning succinctly, it gives a depth of knowing that engages our right brain and makes sense beyond the logical and linear.
Psychotherapy is not always about what is not OK. It is a setting for growth and self discovery. That can be a vibrant, energizing process, and it may just involve a wealth of joy and laughter along the way.
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