10 May 2010

The X-factor

The most important thing in life is to learn how to love, and to let it in. - Morrie Schwartz

An individual does not have enough fingers and toes to count all of the theoretical approaches to psychotherapy. Psychoanalysis, Family Systems Therapy, Person Centered Counseling, Reality Therapy, and Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy, are the names of just a few.

Many of the approaches to therapy and counseling contradict each other in theory and practice, yet all enjoy some degree of efficacy and support.

What analysis is all about is for one hour a week, you sit and hope that for a flash of a moment you will experience connectedness.
-Marion Woodman

Irvin D. Yalom, M.D., one of the fathers of existential therapy, and the author of Love's Executioner, asked how can competing approaches to counseling all work? What factor do they have in common?

Yalom answers his own question. He believes that healing takes place, in all of the theoretical approaches, when a person admits their deepest fears and secrets to another human being … and still feels accepted and valued.

But go and learn what this means: 'I desire mercy, not sacrifice.' For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners. – Matthew 9:13

There are so many places in scripture where Jesus talks about reaching out to each other. We all need to be listened to. We all need compassion. We all need to be able to tell our stories, not be judged, and to feel loved.

We are the conduits of what Jesus came to Earth to offer humanity: love, mercy, and forgiveness.

... Father, we thank you for being a God of second chances. Father, forgive us for not listening to each other. Father, turn our hearts and teach us to love the way that you love. In Jesus name we pray ...


  1. Sometimes Russ you say just the right thing at the right time-thank you I needed that :)

  2. AnonymousMay 11, 2010

    i think morrie was right.

  3. AMEN! B/c of my background, personally and in ministry, not a lot shocks me. I sometimes have to adjust my face very quickly -- multiquicksecondly, for want of a better term -- but the overall willlingness to listen is always "there." I know if people hadn't stepped up and listened to me and, instead, just thought I was nuts/didn't "fit", I'd probably have continued down some pretty less-than-healthy paths.

  4. Jane - Thank our Father. I sure thank Him for you ... :-)

    nAncy! - I think you are right, too!

    CaryJo - May you never be shocked, but let there be many tears and every tear be a prayer ... :-)

  5. We all need to tell our stories, not be judged, and to feel loved.

    Good reason to cultivate the skill of listening?

  6. Make that loving listening.

  7. Anne - Listening is loving ... so you were correct both times.

  8. wow....this was something I really needed to hear....on both sides.

    I am sometimes guilty of not really listening to some people, just waiting for my turn to talk. There, I said it. (wow, that was tough, but feels good to say)

    And I also have the yearning to share some deep thoughts/concerns with others but do fear the nonacceptance that might take place. Thankfully I have Jesus.....who, although already knows what I will say....is always there to listen.

    This was a great post!

  9. Hey Michelle - Jesus gave us each other, so that we can be conduits of His love. Thanks for stopping by. I really enjoy your blog and should comment there more ... :-)