Constructing Empowering Narratives

Narrative Therapy is a counseling modality used to help people gain new perspectives on past life events and issues. It aims to give people distance from the stories they have constructed or “narrated” in response to these events, in order to “rewrite” a new narrative that better reflects their identity, goals and ideals. This technique helps clients discover how their internalized reactions may have shaped their identity, take accountability for them and find more empowering narratives in order to move forward positively.

HOW DOES NARRATIVE THERAPY WORK?

Narrative therapy takes the view that events that occur in a person’s life become influential stories that they derive meaning from. These stories will often shape a person’s worldview and their sense of identity. These narratives can influence their perception of subsequent events and ultimately, their decision-making and behaviors.

Narrative therapy assumes that stories we tell ourselves can shape our belief systems, and affect how we see ourselves, as well as the conclusions we draw about later experiences and interactions. This modality works by focusing on these stories, particularly the ones that may be problematic and lead to negative behavior and reactions, and thereby helps people find more positive, alternative narratives.

WHAT CAN NARRATIVE THERAPY ACCOMPLISH?

Narrative therapy suggests that we create stories based on our experiences in an attempt to make sense of the things that happen to us. Although some stories will be positive and others negative, each narrative impacts our lives in the past, present, and future. For example, when we prescribe meaning to an event, it will influence our perceptions of ourselves and can alter our self-esteem, relationships, and capacity in life.

In narrative therapy, clients are encouraged to uncover and define who they are. “Rewriting” personal narratives will help reframe the influence of past stories to influence the future story of their lives. This type of exploration can help patients expand their sense of sense, challenge outdated and negative belief systems, and offer a way to live that reflects a more positive, healthier story.

Embark on a journey of self-discovery with Narrative Therapy

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