I Am The Student And The Teacher… I’m A Psychotherapist

I have a Blog. Well so far one, this one, the one you’re reading right now. More are coming. Which has me wondering, what do you call the individually written pieces, the monthly or periodic postings that constitute a Blog? Bloguettes? I like that, curl up with a baguette, some good cheese, your favorite beverage and enjoy my Bloguettes of my Blog as I share with you my thoughts and experiences on my work as a psychotherapist.

Yes, I’m a therapist, a counselor, a Marriage and Family Therapist by license. I’ve been privileged and honored to be trusted to hear and share in people’s stories for nearly 40 years. In this process, I have been the student as well as the teacher and coach. I thought this would be a good time for me to share what I’ve learned from these encounters with a bigger audience. Thus, my Blog.

Who Truly Knows Your Story?

We all have a story. Yet, what I’ve learned over the years and thousands of hours of work is that few of us fully understand our story, or even desire too. We discount, embellish, ignore or truly forget significant, important details that shape us into who we are and how we got to where we are today. And, who and where we will be tomorrow.

Let’s face it, our stories can be scary! But change often starts with curiosity… “Who am I” or “Why do I believe what I believe” or “Why do I behave the way I behave.” Yet, I have found that when one makes a commitment to understanding their story and then a commitment to teaching it to others, a happier, healthier life results. It really is the pathway to self-love, improved relationships, better health and finding joy in what we do.

Are You Present With Your Feelings?

My life’s work has been to help people not be afraid to learn and understand the effects of their story on themselves and those around them. To help them affirm that their history need not define their future. With this understanding and acceptance, we can get and stay present with ourselves. Think about it, your own thoughts and your own feelings. Then you can be in the moment – present – with your loved ones and with those you struggle to know better.

How You Look, How You Sound And What You Say

We communicate with one another in words, emotions and behaviors. Generally speaking, we just don’t do it very well or quite frankly, very honestly. We feel one thing and behave another. We’re tired yet we look and sound angry. We’re embarrassed yet we look and sound angry. We’re afraid yet we look and sound angry. Get my point? We also smile to hide our sadness, cover up our hurt and govern our excitements. There is an old saying from the 60’s… “Level with me.” Most people thought it meant to be honest and it sort-of does. But not in the “don’t lie to me” way. It means, having the message you want heard being on the same plane; if you’re sad, you look, sound and use words that imply sadness. Same thing if you’re feeling insecure. Being honest with yourself and others is to look, sound and use words indicating you’re insecure. Trust me, everyone feels insecure from time to time. And sad, guilty, fearful and all the other feelings we humans have. I help my clients recognize the value, the strength and freedom that comes with honest expression of thoughts and feelings and how sharing these with others in a manner we’re more likely to be heard, by leveling, leads to healthier relationships.

Recognizing the powerful difference between how you once experienced your story and how you can change your beliefs, your behaviors and your future is within your reach. You can be the creator of your story, directly influencing how you treat yourself, how you approach relationships, work and the passions you pursue, be it golf, baseball, flying or crafts. Understanding empowers us to use the right words and express the right feelings and behaviors, to level, with ourselves and others. To teach who we are now and who we are going to be tomorrow.

My Musing

Every-so-often when working my craft, a nifty, shrewdly timed reflective and perhaps, philosophical thought would rattle around in my mind and spring from my lips. When a musing resonated with the client, I’d take note and write it down. Over time these reveries became “Mark’s Quotes.” They’ve become quite popular and now several don the front of my business card and you will find them rotating on each page throughout my website. These reflective, perhaps philosophical quotes will be the basis of my Blog… Mark Willison’s Reflective and Perhaps Philosophical Musings. The first in the series, coming soon, is about trust. The title of this Blog is: “Trust Grows Like the Sun Warms”. It’s about how trust can be destroyed at the speed of a light switch thrown and what it takes to earn it back.

I hope you enjoy this and the other musing I’ll be posting regularly, including blogs addressing Performance Joy, Forgiveness, Goal Setting, and how to prevent being invisible in any relationship.

If you are interested in working with me in therapy in person or online, I am best reached through my website or by calling me.

Mark Willison – 831 277 9999