Changing the picture of lock down

It’s all about the picture!

There is a metaphor that we Solution Focused Hypnotherapists use, both with our students and our own clients. It’s about a picture and the following is an extract:

‘Some villagers way out in a jungle many years ago were given a painting. They were told that as long as they had this beautiful picture all would be well in their world.  Then, one day, the picture was stolen and the villagers became very worried. It seemed as though their world was coming to an end and nothing would ever appear to be the same again’.

Some of us have been reciting this metaphor for well over 15 years now, but there’s a certain irony as we repeat this story in today’s current climate!

The reason we relay this metaphor to clients is that sometimes people feel as though their world will never be as they want it to be.  This can be due to a number of things, such as losing a partner or a job; not having enough money; being restricted in what they can do; or simply a lack of positive chemicals in the brain.

The COVID-19 Crisis

Whatever the reason, we tend to look at the bleaker side of life when something untoward happens. That’s unless we have an abundance of positive chemicals already zipping round our brains or we’re a ‘glass half full’ type of person.  When this happens, we have more capacity to get us through a crisis in a better way.

We absolutely know that the more we make the most of things, the more we change the chemical reaction in our brain. This enables us to cope better.  Therefore, to enable us to cope with the uncertainty of the future right now, it’s far better to look out for the things we CAN do, rather than dwell on the things that we cannot do.  The latter simply makes us feel down or depressed.  Whereas, if we look at what we can do (and this may take a bit of effort sometimes), then we can feel happier.

Taking the current situation of lock down and COVID-19, we may not actually be able to change aspects of the situation, but we can change the way we deal with it.  We can all look at a picture and see things from a different angle.  As an example, do you remember the plane crashing into the Hudson River? For some people they would marvel as they watched the drama unfolding and be amazed at how everyone survived.  Whilst others would exclaim, “Well, that’s just another darned good reason not to get on a plane”!

Back to that Metaphor

The metaphor above goes on to say: ‘Then, one of the villagers started to paint their own picture and, soon enough, some of the other villagers joined in.  They suddenly noticed that their world was changing for the better’.

We can change our way of looking at a picture, if we want to.  A lot of our clients are saying that the lock down is an opportunity to review where they’re going in life; a chance to see how they can manage on a limited budget; a moment in time to slow down and take time with family.  Others are claustrophobic; feeling extremely anxious; wanting things to get back to normal. Then there are those who don’t want to get back to normal, they can be feeling anxious about what comes next.

Although the lock down situation is similar for a lot of us, there can be a difference in our mood which may be due to our personal circumstance. Luck can play a big part, whether or not we have an income can have a massive effect, but the uncertainty will be there for a lot of us and that’s the area that we can start to work with.

The ‘What if’ question can be asked with head bowed low and doom in our voice but it can also be asked with a bit of enthusiasm with a thought towards opportunity – because in the vast majority of cases, there is opportunity if you look hard enough or if you create your own picture of how you would like your future to be.

Changing Lives!

As Lecturers at CPHT Edinburgh and Clinical Hypnotherapists, it’s also our job to teach our students and clients how to create change in our own minds.  This enables us to make decisions in a better way, to spot opportunities and to enjoy life more.

From the first weekend of the 10-month course, our students will be helping friends and family.  Three months later, following the third course weekend, our students will be helping members of the public deal with anxiety and depression (on a case study basis).  This can have a huge impact on the way people look and deal with situations.  Their picture of life changes – more towards the positive.

If you want to change not only your own life, but other people’s lives too, then have a look around our website.  Alternatively, have a chat with us about what small steps can lead you to becoming a Clinical Hypnotherapist.  Either Call Alex on 07917 415926 or Anne on 07584 414715.