This post was first published at www.JudithAshley.blogspot.com.
Dr. William Glasser's revolutionary book Reality Therapy was published fifty years ago. Many of us who studied with Dr. Glasser as well as others who are interested in his work are coming together in Las Vegas later in July to celebrate this important anniversary.
Not only was the counseling process of reality therapy taught in 1965 the first brief therapy, at the core it recognized the importance of the counselor attaining and maintaining a friendly, colleague-like relationship in the client. Today we know this approach as ‘client-centered’ therapy.
Dr. Glasser died in August 2013 but his teachings are alive and well.
In my recent book, Hunter (due out summer 2015), Logan, the daughter of the main character, Hunter Compton, runs away and gets into trouble on the streets of the fictional Fremont, Oregon. When she is found and brought off the streets, she is shaken to the core.
How could anyone still love her if they knew what had happened to her?
It starts with two people who do know what happened to her and clearly and unequivocally state they love her.
As the story progresses and she comes to see that people who have known her do not turn away from her. Whenever the darkness of despair and fear creep into her thoughts, she begins to list by name the people she knows do love her.
Having a background in child welfare as well as thirty years working in domestic and international adoption, I know how powerful the knowledge is that someone else cares about us.
Your assignment, if you choose to accept it, is to take a piece of paper and write down the first name of everyone who cares about you. Of course there are some names like family that easily go on the list, but stretch yourself.
Who else cares about you? Best friends, but they are also easy to include.
When I involved my granddaughters with this exercise, after family, we included their teachers, neighbors, doctors and classmates.
Seeing a list of names of people we believe love and care about us not only shows us how connected we are but it is a very powerful experience.
My own list would include my local pharmacy. Just yesterday in 90+ degree weather, when I picked up my prescription and a pint of vanilla ice cream, the pharmacist checked to see how close I lived offering me a cold pack to keep the ice cream from melting.
I didn't ask, it was offered.
Cynics will say, "Well, yeah, you're a customer".
However, if I'd been across the street at a major grocery chain, no one would have even asked much less made the offer.
So do yourself a favor and make the list. Add to it from time to time as you meet and get to know new people.
And, unless someone is especially nasty to you, do not cross them off. I know I've several people with whom I'm not in regular contact, but that doesn't mean I don't care about them and vice-versa.
Judith Ashley is the author of The Sacred Women's Circle series romantic fiction that honors spiritual paths that nurture the soul.
Learn more about The Sacred Women's Circle at Judith's website.
Check out Judith's author page at Windtree Press.