Letting Go of Right and Wrong

December 2023

Sometimes the goal or desired outcome of therapy can be hidden and be masquerading as one thing when really its something else. As therapists our job is to enquire and explore the inner world of our clients and sometimes the struggle is not with what’s out there but what is (within us) in here!! I have found that with young people this concept requires deeper work to come to the surface and be accepted into the therapeutic process.

The notion of everything will be fine as long as I’m right is a theme among many of the young people and students that I see in my therapy room.  Therapy promotes taking the time to accept and tolerate feelings which can be confusing, conflicting and contradictory. Then using this new found tolerance to firstly acknowledge and then choose to let go of the all or nothing mindset that holds us back and keeps us stuck, is one of the major parts of the therapeutic process. The black and white thinking which disables their ability to consider nuances is another necessary part of adaptive thinking. Once they are able to consider alternatives to the notion of “good” or “bad”, “right” or “wrong” they are able to apply this flexibility to themselves and approach themselves with compassion and understanding. Letting go of this binary thinking facilitates potential and growth by letting in uncertainty.