Like many other therapists, I do business networking in order to meet new people that I can help. We have to do what they refer to as an elevator talk that says who I am, what I do and all of that stuff.
What I’ve found hard is working out what I do and getting that over to the other people there. I took a look at what I spend my therapeutic time doing and I found that I spend a lot of time working with anxiety.
Today something happened a little differently. It took me by surprise because it felt a little more real. So here is how it started:
Good morning, I’m Peter French.
I specialise in helping people with anxiety related issues.
I’m trained to use hypnosis and other therapies but they’re just tools of my trade. At the centre of what I do are the people who come to me for help.
I hope none of my colleagues are reading this because they may feel cheated. We generally tell a story that illustrates what we do at this point, I make these up (that’s a secret).
Today’s story went like this:
I was helping somebody the other day with a problem that included self confidence. I explained how we sometimes tell ourselves stories that undermine ourselves and she had some things she said to herself, one was that she felt like her employers were going to find out she was the wrong person for the job at some point.
When I asked how that story could be improved to help rather than hinder she said she wasn’t good at bigging herself up. So I offered some suggestions, what about the four years getting a good degree at university, what about the professional qualifications that you worked so hard to get, what about the late nights that you work to get the job done right, what about that attitude to work that is one of the best that I’ve ever heard. This isn’t bigging yourself up, this is simple truth. Listen to your own truth.
I finished my story with:
You know sometimes we forget the truth and we need reminding who we are.
You have to do a call to action at the end of the talk:
If you know anyone who could use my help them please send them my way.
Some days it just goes right and today was one of them.
What was different today? I think it was that I finally realised some of my own truths and they came together and it helped me focus.
I really do specialise in helping people with anxiety related issues. I really do spend time with my clients working with anxiety.
I really do put the client at the centre of therapy sessions, it’s the only way to help them make a change.
Hypnosis and other therapies are tools of my trade, they are not what I do.
Between you and me, I’ve met lots of people who felt the same way as the fictitious person in the story. I’ve even been that person in the story (except I’m not a woman).
When you are working with anxiety with a client and you help somebody to change their perspective it’s a wonderful thing to be part of.