A little birdie told me that it is hard trusting the therapeutic process. What does this mean? Trust may already be difficult for our clients. Wounds, injuries, and systemic biases may be working against their ability to trust mental health in general, let alone trusting the stranger before them assessing, prodding, and exploring their innermost thoughts, feelings, and secrets. The therapist may not fit the client’s imagination of what may, will or should work for them. Preconceived parameters of age and appearances get in the way of the therapeutic process. Wanting what is comfortable gets in the way of the therapeutic process. Impatience gets in the way of the therapeutic process. All of this makes sense because comfortable is safe like a perfectly worn-enough shoe that you slip on knowing what you are going to get. The shoe that won’t pinch you or cause you blisters. However wonderful a pair of shoes may be they may not last much longer so preparing for a new pair is on the horizon. A recent occurrence highlighted how one of our amazing clients wanted an older and life-experienced therapist to work with her. When I challenged her thoughts and encouraged her to trust me and the therapist I assigned her to, she agreed to give it 4 sessions. Not going to sugar coat the first session. It was rough like that new shoe leaving a nasty blister at the end of the day. But, this patient, empathetic and marvelous therapist heard the client. She gently challenged her, she showed patience with her, she highlighted her strengths and abilities. She demonstrated her therapy chops and skills. I can say now this client is dancing in her new shoes. She trusted the therapeutic process and felt transformative by doing so. And that my friends is what a little birdie told me…
Why A little Birdie?
My goal for writing this blog was to highlight the remarkable work of our clinical staff. The tireless commitment to excellence from mental health providers can feel unrewarding or stagnant at times. I would send these “anonymous” shout out messages to all staff when I heard of some great and outstanding growth – the little birdie told me.. was a way to communicate this to everyone in a quick and meaningful way. Shining moments should be recognized.
Then, I realized I neglected to emphasize the courage and resiliency of our wonderful clients. The work begins with them. So, I began to write about magnificent moments of insight and daring movements of change. Our clients are remarkable.
We decided to share these little messages with you all.
So, I hope you all read through this blog with the spirit of which it was intended. To shed positive thoughts into our world.