Identity isn’t given, it’s developed through affirmation, acknowledgement, a strong system and structure.
I want to talk about a subject that is continuing to keep the cycles of dysfunction going around. It’s a 6 letter word called:
Trauma is defined as a deeply distressing or disturbing experience.
In medicine, it’s physical injury.
Trauma is a situation or a memory that you want to forget, but CAN’T!!
The sad part about trauma is that it occurs, individuals are wounded, damaged, and injured physically, mentally, and emotionally. Some never get help for their trauma, as they never heal.
The sad part about trauma is that people know it happened to them or others, but won’t pick their head out of the sand. We allow it to happen, but don’t do anything to heal for it.
Think about a good memory, a memory that is pleasant, good, and an awesome experience. You remember every detail about the experience, and you want to tell everyone about what happened!
Well, trauma works the opposite, the setting is negative, the abused doesn’t want to tell because they are wounded and embarrassed. Many say, If I try to forget about what happened, it will go away.”
Many turn to risky lifestyles, drugs and alcohol to numb their pain.
This behavior has been occurring in our communities for too long. Abuse is something that keeps on giving.
They may want to tell someone, however, they are afraid to, and usually the abuser is someone the abused knows. You remember the season, time of year, the time of day the traumatic event occurred.
Date and time of a traumatic experience can affect the baseline (normal) behavior of the individual. Individuals who have experienced trauma tend to have flashbacks, reminders of the negative experiences often show up at the time the trauma occurred.
We see this often in individuals who have a diagnosis of depression, mood disorders, etc.
When you are trying to get to the root of a behavior, usually without someone telling you verbally, their non-verbal behavior will help tell the story.
When uncovering and using reframing and clarification, one can point out the behavior as the “smokescreen” that masks their true feelings.
When identifying patterns of behavior, don’t overlook that the behavior could be the result of a traumatic experience.
Abuse is a gift that keeps on giving. Let’s return the gift and exchange abuse for healing. Healing cannot occur unless there is exposure of the root.
McNeil (2014) at Messiah College…
“Righteousness exalts a nation.
We complain about the causes, we gripe about the scope of the problem.
We must build and develop a platform on which to stand and grow and develop programming that empowers, equips, and teaches men to be the head of their homes, respect women, be heroes to their children, and be pillars in the community. Let’s develop programming that empowers young girls to respect themselves and focus on healing from the hurtful, abusive things that were done to them. We didn’t just stumble into fatherlessness over these several centuries, but we can do an about face and use our experience as our fuel to transform our communities to reduce the problem. Many children are lacking their natural protector, which is their father.
From poverty to aggressive behavior to attention-seeking behaviors, our affected individuals need to see relative individuals in positions of authority. Everyone they see in authority, they fear, There isn’t enough men out here!!!
Our children need to develop critical thinking skills, goal setting, and gaining knowledge with empowerment AND skill sets.
It’s time for us to merge forces to form a clearinghouse. It’s time to save the boys AND the girls. Not everyone is called or chosen to do this. Why? Because anyone can put facts and figures together and present their findings but if you don’t have the sweat equity to go with passion, it won’t be effective. It’s as a sounding brass. Real recognizes real at this point.”
As first popularized by Fritz Perls, one of the founders of gestalt therapy, an empty chair faced the client. The client imagined someone (or himself, herself, or parts of him or herself) in it, and spoke, gestured, or otherwise communicated to the “empty chair,” which was now not so empty. The client then sat in the chair, continuing the conversation, this time reversing roles. Variations of the “empty chair” developed over the decades in order to fit the clinical needs of the situation – and as gestalt therapy evolved. The client might participate in this technique without the “prop” of an actual empty chair. Importantly, the technique today always includes attention to the relational dynamic between the client and the psychotherapist.
3. How does it help the client?
This technique often brings clients into present or immediate experiences. Abstractions or verbalizations become enlivened moments. Clients may be able to experience different aspects of their own conflicts in a new manner through empty-chair dialogue. Gestalt therapy is more than a collection of techniques, despite the notoriety of the empty chair. This technique is one of the many interventions within gestalt therapy, all with the common purpose of facilitating discovery and psychotherapeutic insight.
4. What makes the empty chair a cool intervention?
Any intervention that challenges the passivity of the clinician and turns psychotherapy into a creative collaboration is a cool technique. Further, if the empty chair is a new approach to the clients, it offers a new perspective on the therapy process.
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