While there are days when I am tired or discouraged that I may think that I work in order to be able to buy the things I need to live, I know that isn’t really true. I have no doubt that I live to work. I have been a psychotherapist since 1987. My primary modality is group therapy based on a developmental model that includes the concept of “inner children.” I believe that one of the most important elements in healing is for clients to learn how to parent those vulnerable “children” inside of themselves.
Most people start therapy because they are depressed and/or anxious. They may have learned to cover their pain with addictive behaviors such over-working, over-thinking, eating disorders or substance abuse. They frequently have trouble in relationships and often feel alone and lonely. Past traumas may cause them to experience flashbacks. They often have poor self esteem and think they are unworthy and will never be good enough. They may be very critical of themselves and others.
In a group setting, clients have a place to work through their past wounds with peers who are supportive and who won’t leave when they make mistakes. They learn how to stop their self sabotaging behaviors. Group members build new friendships and learn skills that will serve them for the rest of their lives.
I can’t tell you the satisfaction it gives me to accompany clients through the transformation that take place over time. It is like seeing butterflies emerging from chrysalises or watching miracles unfolding in front of me.
There is a song that was written more than twenty years ago that I believe captures the essence of the message I endeavor to give my clients and that they give to each other. I heard the song again last week so I am going to share it with you.
I have no doubt that when the time comes for me to retire, supporting healing and growth in some form will still be an important part of my purpose in living.
Written for Dungeon Prompts: Live to Work or Work to Live