Through the rearview mirror
I’d like you to think about some of the journeys that you take in the car on a daily basis. Then I’d like you to think about it in a lot more detail – not just the journeys you have had but also the actions you have taken to get yourself right here, right now, at this moment.
My son is currently learning to drive, thinking hard about acceleration and the breaking, changing gears, steering around the bends and obstacles, trying to read the road signs alongside mastering the art of ‘mirror, signal, manoeuvre’ checklist. Working with (and driven by) our own emotions, we all have those days where we wish we could change the past, drive away from discomfort, guilt or pain, and we all want to move forward – usually as quickly as we can.
I recently read an anonymous quotation that said ‘There is a reason that the rearview mirror is so small, and the windscreen is so big. Where you are heading is so much more important than what you’ve left behind’.
Whilst I agree with those sentiments, the reality is that often what we have left behind is momentous, complex, messy, and really isn’t that easy to let go of, or leave behind. If we don’t go through the checklist of ‘mirror, signal, manoeuvre’, the risk is we have an emotional road traffic collision, because we haven’t made sense of what was behind us and how it impacts on us now, the mirror is smeared, and visibility is poor.
Psychotherapy and counselling can help you to see in that rearview mirror more clearly, working with a therapist as your driving guide, gives clarity to the past, so that you know what is here in the present, and most importantly how to safely manoeuvre into your future.
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About Anne-Marie Alger
Anne-Marie is an integrative psychotherapist providing individual and relationship counselling. Based in Bolton, offering face-to-face and on-line counselling sessions.