Updated: Dec 8, 2020
So I'm an integrative counsellor. I'm trained in working with thoughts (cognitive behaviour) and what I call the heart (subconscious behavior). Two strands holding together the conscious "me" and the subconscious "me" all beautifully connected in ways that science continues to try and fully map and understand.
But here's what really interests me:
The word "Mental Health".
It's a very....well..... "above my shoulders".....kinda term!! It speaks of my head, my cognition and the condition of my mental state. If I've good mental health then it sounds like my heads in good shape. The trouble is, and there are always exceptions, I'm not sure my thoughts, my head, can have good long term mental health unless my heart is in good shape first!
From experience I believe the deep, the subconscious, my "heart thoughts", always impact my thinking and therefore my mental health. I'm an advocate of the need to equip clients to manage thoughts but trying to manage thoughts with a broken heart is like:
"Trying to put a Band-aid on a Bullet Wound!"
Eventually we become exhausted trying to "hold our heads together" and the heart-ache breaks in and overwhelms our heads.
Healing that lasts has to be founded on heart-work and heart-work always has a connection to our inner sense of security, attachment, identity, self-worth and life purpose. Once these areas start to heal then we can hope to work with thought management that lasts. .
I wonder, is our mental health crisis actually a broken-hearted crisis?
Or as some put it.....
"Is the heart of the human problem the problem of the human heart?"
Whatever the depths of our broken heartedness, I hold hope for every client and hope is a powerful force.
Ballymena Counsellor Ric Wilton