Counseling is like Coffee and Disc Golf
Growing up I didn’t consider myself as being good at many things. Sure I was smart and got great grades but my older brother was smarter, he even finished undergrad in two and a half years. My brother was also very naturally talented in music; I was not. And my brothers were both good at sports, I was always the last one to cross the finish line. The one thing I always knew I was good at? Relationships. I was really good at grabbing a cup of coffee and being present with my friends.
This is how I think of counseling. Counseling in a way is similar to going to grab a cup of coffee with a best friend. Best friends are those who you trust and tell your struggles to, even when you don’t tell anyone else. In these ways it is similar to counseling.
There are also some ways counseling is different. Over coffee usually both people share and you are able to communicate how you feel but don’t often feel like anything has changed when you get up and leave. And our best friends, and I love them for this, tend to always have our back and will often always agree with us even when we are wrong.
Counseling is this magical space where you get to dive into our own stuff without having to worry about allowing the other person time to share their stuff. With counseling you won’t hear your counselor say “I know exactly how you feel! One time….” Counseling is the difference between someone saying “I know exactly how you feel” and showing you they understand how you feel. In counseling you have someone to go with you to those deepest places you may otherwise shy away from. In counseling your counselor will challenge you and help you grow, instead of simply agree with you and tell you “you are right”. Sometimes you are right and your counselor might tell you “you are right” but then ask “now what?” Counseling is about forward motion and change.
Yesterday a friend told me a story about when she went to play disc golf with her husband. She said they came to a long drive with a bunch of trees between them and the hole, and every time she would throw her disc it would ricochet off of the trees. Her husband encouraged her and told her she could do it, it just required some more finesse. And then proceeded to throw the disc and it swooped and curved and she swears it zig zagged into between the trees and landed very close to the hole. Her husband was sure to add that it was not a hole in one but that it was close.
In life we try things and they don’t always work. We get stuck and can’t see the solution. And sometimes the solution is as easy as someone showing us another way. Because when we change our view on things, we change everything.
“Want to change your life? Change the story you are telling yourself in your head.”