reframing metaphors

Reframing Metaphors

Reframe Metaphor a powerful way to change your thinking

Healing metaphor stories

Every situation can be interpreted in multiple ways. Every set of facts, everything that has happened, can be understood differently. How you see a situation can be quite different from how I see the same situation. Problems arise when people assign meaning to a situation and then are unable to change that meaning.

For example, a child who was beaten and neglected by their parents, may come to the conclusion that this means that they are bad and worthless. If they were not bad and worthless it wouldn't have happened. That child grows into an adult believing that they are worthless.

Beliefs Start in Childhood

The adult then starts behaving in self-destructive ways because they believe that they are worthless. Everything that happens to that adult is evaluated to see if it matches the belief of "worthless". Everything that confirms the "worthless" belief is recognized. Everything that contradicts "worthless" is ignored and discarded.

However, the meaning "worthless" is only one possible meaning from what happened. Other people would see the same situation as meaning that the parents were unskilled, or needed help, or should have been punished, or some other meaning. The child's conclusion that they are "worthless" is only one possible meaning, and not very helpful.

A belief such as "worthless" can be very deeply embedded in that adults unconscious mind. That belief can be very difficult to access and to change. Psychologically, deeply held beliefs are seldom examined. They're just accepted as true and unchangeable. But actually, they are not.

Reframing metaphors change beliefs

One way to reach these deep beliefs is through a reframing metaphor. A metaphor is a story about someone in a similar, but different situation, who was able get out of that situation by using a different set of assumptions. The listener reflects on the story and automatically tries to match the general situation in the story to their particular situation. The listener's mind will find parallels between what happened in the story and what they can do in their situation.

By reflecting on the story, the listener is able to see their own situation from a different point of view. This allows the listener to consider different ways of interpreting that situation. As soon as the listener sees one way in which it could be viewed differently, then this immediately dislodges the certainty of the old belief. Then the way is open to start questioning that all belief. Which leads to abandoning the old belief.

The reframing metaphor collection

This collection of reframing metaphors offers complete stories about certain situations. By reading or hearing the stories, you are making yourself reflect on the actual meaning of what is happening in the story. This leads you to reflect on the meaning of similar things in your life.

The difference between a reframing metaphor and a clinical metaphor is who it is about. You are not the direct subject of a reframe metaphor.  In a clinical metaphor it is all about you personally. In a reframing metaphor you are told what somebody else did. In a clinical metaphor, you are the one who is doing the action.

Need for Control Reframing

Success is about knowing what your goals are and how to to get to them. It points out the lesson that we all tend to rush at things that we shouldn't, then waste time worrying when we should be powering ahead.

Addiction Relapse Reframe Metaphor

The Addiction Recovery Metaphor reframes a slip from recovery back to addictive behavior as being something that can be expected and accepted on the way to recovery. Slipping does not mean that you have failed. You always have inner resources.

Stress Burnout Reframe 

Constant Rock metaphor reframes adversity. It teaches setbacks make you stronger, experience teaches and shapes you, you can find your own strength.

Procrastination Indecision Reframe metaphor

Going to Istanbul is a metaphor for people who are forever putting things off until everything is just right, until they have checked all the options.

Social Isolation Reframe Metaphor

Swimming Bear metaphor questions the comfort of social isolation, the need to keep your distance from others, lets you become aware of your social isolation

Stop Micromanaging Reframe

This Perspective on Life metaphor is a simple but powerful way of getting the point across to people who are anxious and wound up about little things.

Reframing Old Certainties and Assumptions

A metaphor about challenging assumptions and thinking outside the box. The simplicity and the magical characters tie you to stories from childhood.

Your Secret Power

A story to remind you not to put too much faith in other people's claims to secret powers. If they have that power then most likely you have the same power. It is worth being a little skeptical sometimes. 

Asking the Right Question

Sometimes the answer is not as important as asking the right question. This simple reframing metaphor gets the point across simply and memorably. Then let their unconscious mind make the connection.

Child of Time

This metaphor allows you to reframe your own life. It uses the idea of Deep Time to put your own life into perspective. Your life is important, and valuable, and meaningful.

Mini Metaphors

Mini metaphors are short and memorable. Each one makes its point in a few words, but leaves a strong impression. They don't need to be elaborate to work. Short stories with a big punch.



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