Remember: You are a terrible therapist for yourself! But you do have to lead the charge in bettering your own mental health. We strongly believe that everyone benefits from therapy. That’s where emotional alchemy comes into play.
Alchemy is the outdated term for taking one thing and turning it into another. Since the 18th Century, we’ve learned that, while this is possible (yes, you can take coal and turn it into diamonds), there are other times when it’s not (taking coal and turning it into gold). At Simply Psych, we love helping our clients help their patients turn thoughts, feelings, and behaviors into a meaningful life.
Therapy transmutes stressful feelings into meaningful memories, family frustrations into conscious connections. Beyoncé didn’t invent the saying, but she was right in reminding us that when life gives you lemons, you gotta make lemonade. Take what you get, and turn it into something more, something better.
Therapists have multiple tools at their disposal to work this magic. There are over 100 different therapeutic approaches, such Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Integrative Psychiatry, Wilderness Therapy, the Gottman Method for couples therapy, and even Brainspotting. The list is growing, as more and more methods of engaging trauma, hardships, emotions, addictions, mental illnesses, etc. continue to grow and develop through research and study.
One critical accomplishment in therapy is actively turning the dial to what you need at the moment. For example, having anxiety about a dream job you’re interviewing for is pretty normal. Eliminating all anxiety, in this case, wouldn’t be helpful. Sometimes it’s fun to experience those human “jitters.” Removing all “negative” (difficult) emotions in this scenario would take away from the excitement at succeeding in the interview.
Thus, it boils down to one main factor: context. The key to good emotional alchemy is context: allowing and promoting particular states in particular situations. Think of it this way… Ice in a glass on a hot summer day: great! 😄 Ice on the highway when it’s dark out: bad. 😫 It’s the same thing (ice), just within a completely different context (refreshing drink or dangerous roadway).
Emotions are complicated, nuanced, and something we experience every day. Learning how to let our emotions be felt without letting them take control of ourselves is the differentiator. Looking at your emotions through the lens of the context at hand helps distinguish if it ought to be felt as is, or altered through emotional alchemy for a more palatable and contextual outcome.
There really is no one way of doing this. Finding a therapist helps you navigate your thoughts, feelings, and emotions. You are capable of taking your feelings and transforming them into a completely different state with the right emotional alchemist.
Simply Psych works with therapists of all licensures and certifications. Here’s a smattering of options for you at www.FeelBetterFortWorth.com (with many more to come!).
Find us wherever you are.