In my last post I discussed Brene Brown’s groundbreaking work on the importance of allowing ourselves to show vulnerability and address our feelings of shame with an open heart. I’d like to build a little more on that topic by sharing an article that describes a therapist’s personal experience with tragedy and how he overcame emotional paralysis by allowing himself to be ok with his own vulnerability.
I think many, if not most therapists believe it’s their responsibility to be emotionally strong and to exhibit an unwavering invulnerability to events that would send others spinning into depression or worse. Similarly they believe the best therapist is a detached therapist; one who is always the expert, can be objective all the time and can stay out of the muck that the client is going through. As it turns out nothing could be further from the truth.
In the attached article the author discusses his own personal struggle with physical pain and depression, and how it almost caused him to close his practice permanently. I really enjoyed this article because the author talks so candidly about what he went through and how he needed to let go of his view of himself as an “expert” and come to see himself as another very vulnerable human being. It’s a very nice story about how suffering can lead to wisdom and a greater capacity to be honestly self-disclosing in the service of helping another heal. It’s further evidence of how one’s weaknesses can become their strengths and how vulnerability and willingness to show imperfections can become one’s best allies. http://www.psychotherapynetworker.org/virtual-conference/state-of-the-art-2011/day-1/item/2094-dark-passage