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The Therapeutic Power of Metaphors from the Natural World Adrian Juric, M.A, M.Ed., CCC #1143 www.cedarpathcounselling.com www.innerlandscapes.org.

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Presentation on theme: "The Therapeutic Power of Metaphors from the Natural World Adrian Juric, M.A, M.Ed., CCC #1143 www.cedarpathcounselling.com www.innerlandscapes.org."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Therapeutic Power of Metaphors from the Natural World Adrian Juric, M.A, M.Ed., CCC #1143

2 "Come forth into the light of things, Let nature be your teacher." William Wordsworth

3 R.M. Rilke, “The Swan”

4 “Peak Experience” * Turn to someone you don't know * Describe a powerful, positive 'peak' experience you have had in your life Eg. first time on a roller coaster, holding your first-born, great chocolate/wine, an amazing sunset, your first time on a snowboard/water-skis, etc.

5 Metaphors Influence Thinking Crime as a 'virus' vs. crime as a 'beast' Participants who imagined crime as a ‘‘virus infecting the city’’ wanted to: - know its source - educate residents about how to avoid or deal with the virus - encourage residents to follow better hygiene practices. Participants who imagined crime as a ‘‘wild beast preying on a city’’ all wanted to capture the beast, then kill or cage it. War on drugs In the 1980s Ronald Reagan declared a 'war' on drugs, with smugglers, dealers, and users defined as the 'enemy to be fought'. Results: longer, harsher sentences for drug- related crime, incarceration rates rose 4X

6 “...those who do not have power over the story that dominates their lives, power to retell it, rethink it, deconstruct it, joke about it, and change it as times change, truly are powerless, because they cannot think new thoughts.” - Salman Rushdie, "One Thousand Days in a Balloon" Metaphors Dominate Stories We Tell

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8 Adversity strengthens Stradivarius violin c.1700

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10 Loss precedes renewal Yeats, on 'remaking'

11 Lodgepole Pine cones

12 Chambered Nautilus Growth is irresistible

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14 “If you stay stuck for a period of time, this is given unto you by your soul to give you a resting place. At this place, you judge it as stuck. See it as transition.” - Kuan Yin Darkness is natural and necessary

15 Important things can emerge from it

16 Patience and trust are needed...

17 So that hidden potential can emerge

18 Working with Client Metaphors in Counselling Helps build rapport and trust Reveals clients' worldviews and beliefs about possibility for change Gives clients an indirect way of communicating emotions that are difficult (if not impossible) to express otherwise Suggests new possibilities for change that don't arouse defenses Counsellor's Role: Guide client's exploration of metaphors they choose, encourage associations, explore ones that lead to fresh possibility for action and healthy change

19 “Nature often holds up a mirror so we can see more clearly the ongoing processes of growth, renewal, and transformation in our lives.” MARY ANN BRUSSAT

20 Summer and Fall Events: 'Life Transition Through the Lens of Nature'. The Haven Retreat Centre, Gabriola Island, BC. June 20-22, (11 CEC's) 'Life Transitions: Winter, Clarity, and Renewal. Sea to Sky Retreat Centre, Whistler. November 21-23, Registration online at


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