Autobiography in 5 Short Chapters

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Everyone has been there before: Down in the pits, wondering why the same thing keeps happening. In Private Practice, this might mean that you’re starting another week without any new clients, or struggling to pay the bills for yet another month. Something I share with my clients is the “Autobiography in 5 Short Chapters.” I’ve found this to be incredibly helpful for those who feel stuck, and need some relief from their present day circumstances. I think it applies to us therapists just as much as it does to our clients.

So, take heart, this season will pass in one way or another. What does “walking down another street” look like for you?

Chapter 1

I walk down the street.

There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.

I fall in.

I am lost … I am helpless.

It isn’t my fault.

It takes forever to find a way out.

Chapter 2

I walk down the same street.

There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.

I pretend I don’t see it.

I fall in again.

I can’t believe I am in the same place.

But it isn’t my fault.

It still takes a long time to get out.

Chapter 3

I walk down the same street.

There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.

I see it is there.

I still fall in … it’s a habit.

My eyes are open.

I know where I am.

It is my fault.

I get out immediately.

Chapter 4

I walk down the same street.

There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.

I walk around it.

Chapter 5

I walk down another street.

~ Portia Nelson ~

Image courtesy of Ali West via Flick

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