In this series I am going to introduce the idea of stories and how they are an important part of our lives. I'm going to share with you how you might use them in therapy.
Whenever I'm working with a client, I start with thinking about their personal stories and go on to think about their wider cultural context and more general stories held by their community. Stories can therefore be used as a tool in therapy to allow us to think about how clients relate to themselves and others.
So when thinking about using stories in therapy, a question you might want to start with as a therapist is, are you Hero or Villain in your own story?
Do you have friends with whom you do specific things?
The relationships we make may perpetuate the beliefs and the narrative we hold about ourselves and the world; the kind of person we are, or how we might like to be. Or they may challenge these beliefs and make us consider other ways of being. Perhaps some of these relationships and activities overlap and others never.
Maybe you go out drinking with some, visit an art gallery with another, go to a match with someone else, out to dinner with others. Arguably the different aspects of ourselves are reflected in these different relationships and perhaps are symbolised by the activities we take part in together. Either way our relationships contribute to our own personal story about who we are and how we would like to be seen and understood by others.
What do your relationships tell you about yourself? Are there some you would change? Some you might end? Some you would like to have more of? In your story are you a hero or a villain?
In the next blog, we will explore personal stories in more detail.
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