How Metaphors Can Help Parents And Children
Therapeutic metaphors can be used to help adults and children both make personal changes in their lives. For parents and child caretakers these metaphors enable them to create unique patterns in a person’s brain that will shift the way an individual may view an unfortunate experience that has happened to them in the past.
Milton Erickson is a respected therapist who specializes in hypnosis. He does not have to use any deep hypnotic trance to help his clients, but he is able to accomplish amazing, positive results through the use of a therapeutic metaphor.
When a metaphor is used our brains are able to analyse and apply the deeper underlying meanings of the stories or anecdotes. Stories and anecdotes are more readily accepted by people and are not normally recognised as lessons or therapeutic techniques.
Milton Erickson had mastered this technique to the point of being able to fool even the most highly trained experts. They simply believed he was telling them an interesting story or funny anecdote.
It is possible for you to learn how to use therapeutic metaphors to brighten and redirect a child’s life. Instead of being met with resistance parents will find that their children are eager to listen to the stories that they are telling. Instead of preparing a lecture about an undesirable behaviour you can now use a metaphor as your training technique.
With one of these specially constructed metaphors you are able to learn a treatment modality that helps you and your child discuss an experience in a positive manner. The metaphor creates filters for the mind that allows an individual to look at their past experience in a totally different way.
The saying ‘perception is reality’ is very true when it comes to how we view the events in our life. This means that our views are often colored by preconceived notions and emotions and this then becomes our reality. Through the use of therapeutic metaphor we can help people view these events from an objective view instead of a subjective point of view.
As a child can empathise and identify with the characters in the story it gives them a greater understanding of situation and allows them to see objectively how everyone in the story is feeling. This takes it away from being internal and personal to them and makes it something external that can be discussed without emotion.
Your child will often be able to understand and apply the learning’s from your metaphorical story immediately but other times it will take them a little longer to think about and absorb the lessons.
Therapeutic metaphors can work directly or indirectly which makes them an invaluable tool when dealing with small children or teens. You do not have to keep hammering the lesson to make yourself understood because the metaphor works on both a conscious and a subconscious level. Your child will be able to fully appreciate the wisdom and redirection that you are offering because he will have no conscious resistance blocking your message.
The use of metaphor has the ability to enhance any communication with family members making it both more effective and positive. It gives the child the ability to take away their own learning’s from the story and as they have come to those conclusions themselves they will find it easier to commit those learning’s to their belief system.