THE RULES OF THERAPY
How does it feel to get this email at 2pm on a Monday? Are you surprised? Excited? Irritated? Did you miss it because it came in the middle of a busy day? Or did you open it when you haven’t in a while because it was something different?
I changed the frame.
Just this once. We’ll be back to Tuesday at 7am EST next week.
When you change your weekly therapy time it fits into your life differently. The light is different in the office. Both you and your therapist are at a different point in your day and your week.
What does this mean? How does it impact the work?
Time, confidentiality, money, boundaries, where they put the Kleenex box - these are all part of what therapists call "the frame." And by paying attention to what happens around the frame, you and your therapist can learn a lot about you and your relationship. You can probably dig into material that is related to the reason that you came to therapy in the first place.
Do you make your appointments well in advance? Or do you leave it until something bad happens and you want to talk about it?
Do you have a regular time?
Do you call your therapist? Email her? Text her?
Do you pay before your session? During? Weeks later?
All of this is meaningful. It is all part of your relationship with your therapist.
The frame is the embodiment of you. It is how you and your therapist actually do this thing. How it is set up. Where in the world it happens.
The frame is what is happening around, behind, below, and above all the talking.
The frame is the therapy.
In Therapy School there is a module that talks all about this. It provides examples, gives a bit of the theory and most importantly provides exercises for you to examine how the frame is operating - or, more accurately, how you and your therapist have co-created the frame in your therapy. And what does this mean? The exercises are a springboard for some great therapeutic conversations.
I am pretty excited to share this with you.
Thanks for your flexibility this week. See you next week at our usual time. (Smiling).