I operate a large amount with metaphors and several of my shoppers are homosexual gentlemen and lesbians. The solution I use in counselling and psychotherapy is primarily based on the principal that we interpret and make meaning of existence by way of the tales we notify ourselves and others. These stories about the activities and the encounters of our lives make use of metaphors.

The journey metaphor (everyday living as a journey) is extremely widespread in counselling get the job done as are pedagogic metaphors (lifestyle as finding out). But alternatively than occur up with the metaphors myself, I am intrigued in the metaphors individuals deliver to the counselling session. As a therapist I do not established about generating interpretations but aid men and women to make their personal interpretations.

For case in point, say I am conference with a shopper who talks about not staying equipped to obtain any gratification in everyday living. He has been looking for fulfillment for a lengthy time. He is aware it exists mainly because he is aware of some other gay adult males who seem to have identified it, but he was normally advised when he was increasing up that gratification arrived from obtaining a loved ones and locating a loving lover. He hasn’t been equipped to obtain fulfillment and has often imagined about supplying up (the giving up took the form of suicidal thoughts), but something qualified prospects him to maintain pursuing it.

This story could be noticed as a variety of a quest metaphor: the quest for gratification. In telling me the story of this look for he works by using words and phrases like ‘finding’, ‘searching’, ‘existence’, ‘giving up’ and ‘pursuing’. So I can choose up this metaphor and commence utilizing it with him, applying his own language and interpretation of the occasions and encounters of his lifestyle to uncover new clues, signposts etc to discover the origins of this quest with him. Quest metaphors are not unheard of of class and we see them frequently in films this sort of as The Wizard of Oz, and Lord of the Rings etcetera.

Someone else could possibly appear to me with a problem of ‘not knowing how to make friends’. So there is a metaphor listed here in the ‘making’. This particular person has ‘almost specified up’ mainly because it necessitates ‘too considerably effort’ and he has ‘nothing to see for it’. When I ask about what he has heard about building good friends he tells me that he understands it normally takes ‘Time, Have faith in and Effort’. And from his working experience by now he has determined that it is fairly ‘hard to develop on just one evening stands’ or ‘random hook ups’ due to the fact the full detail is liable to ‘come crumbling down’ as well effortlessly.

This appears to me like a building metaphor. I can observe this up with him by asking about ideas and desires of what varieties of friendships he would like to create. Are they fantastic edifices or cosy hideaways? If random hook ups never seem to get the job done, what kind of foundations could perform? What is the cement of friendship? What are the building blocks? Does he know of any ‘finished products’ or ‘works in progress’ he can get concepts from?

I discover metaphors seriously stimulating. To begin with, I really don’t come up with them, some others do, but I can support build the desired story and plotlines. Metaphors also talk to the hopes, beliefs, commitments and values folks have. And listening to about these is just as essential as hearing the difficulty tale.

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