The elephant in the room - what colour is yours?
Written by listed counsellor/psychotherapist: Judith Gentry BSc (Hons), Registered MBACP
18th November, 20090 Comments
So often we get on with things, being polite, saying “I’m fine thank you”. We talk about the weather, our family or our work. We divert our minds by keeping busy, or hiding away, by making lists, moving furniture around or hoping it will be better tomorrow.
But it won’t, will it? Because there’s an elephant in the room, with a large label round its neck that reads “I am your problem”. Most days you can squeeze past it, averting your eyes, perhaps turn up the music to avoid listening to its sad cries. Lately however, it seems more difficult to ignore. He/She (for as yet it has no name) seems to be getting bigger, and starting to overwhelm you.
Sometimes it seems as if his/her eyes are following you around, and I swear he or she just reached out his/ her trunk, tapped you lightly on the shoulder and said “When are you going to acknowledge me? When are you going to take time to study me? How did I start to get like this? How can I get out of here?"
The elephant in the room is of course an expression, a description of the thing that is so obvious yet we choose to ignore for lots of different reasons. If you are reading this it’s likely that you are thinking about confronting your elephant, deciding whether to live with it or shoo it out of your life.
An excellent starting point is to acknowledge the presence of the elephant i.e. your issue, sadness or current dilemma. You may want to consider starting this process with the support of a therapist. A therapist or counsellor can help you and support you through the tough times, and shed new light on the problem.
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