Break the mirror (metaphorically) to make change

  • bbash 

On New Year’s Day, I played Tommy (the rock opera) by The Who on my community radio show.  Listening to the show, gave me the idea for this blog post.

If you are unfamiliar with Tommy, it is the story of a boy who witnesses his father commit a horrible act, and his mother convinces him that he did not see or hear anything.  This caused Tommy to become “deaf, dumb, and blind”.  Some years later Tommy’s mother takes him to a specialist who diagnoses Tommy as having a psychosomatic disorder.  To prove his diagnosis, he stood Tommy in front of a mirror and Tommy continually stared at his reflection.

Tommy’s mother became frustrated with Tommy do nothing else but staring at his reflection, she smashes the mirror.  This act, breaks Tommy out of his trance state and he enters the world as a functioning human.  After some time, Tommy reverts back to his original state as he cannot function in the world.

This, for me, is a great metaphor for counselling.

Sometimes I see clients who come looking for answers, and when we break the mirror, they do not like what they see, so they go back inside and look at the reflection they had always seen.

The reason: change is difficult.  It is difficult to engage, accept, and maintain.

It is said that humans need 28 days to change a habit.  I don’t know if that is true, because I have seen quicker change when I use hypnotherapy combined with talk therapy.

However, for most people, change is difficult, slow, and sometimes emotionally painful.  However, you need to remember that the reason you came to counselling–to get help to change a situation that is making life difficult, or uncomfortable.  However, to achieve progress, you need to be comfortable with being uncomfortable until your change has been integrated into the new you.

Now, get ready to-metaphorically-break the mirror and create a new reflection; and a new you.