Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Reframing Is Good

If something in your background doesn’t make you pause and then at times withdraw, you are the exception. These seemingly small events in our lives can reshape it if we’re not aware and careful. One of the tools for moving past thes “unfortunate experiences” is useful. To reframe an experience may save you a great deal of grief.

In the book Communication: Principles of a Lifetime, by Beebe, Beebe and Ivy, the authors remind us that what it means to reframe. “Try to look at experiences and events, especially those that can cause you to lose self-esteem, from a different point of view. Keep the larger picture in mind, rather than focusing on one isolated, negative incident.”

For example, someone asked you to speak at an event and for one reason or another you feel to this day that the event was terrible and damaging to you. It makes no difference that you were only 14 years old and that probably nobody remembers what happened but you. You’re not about to put yourself into a position where you could cause yourself that much pain again.

Reframe—think about your life. Have there been positive changes in the way you live and think? Have you done things that other folk admire and wish that they could do as well? What have your friends said about the event and the progress you have made in life? Review the things you’ve learned. What did you wish you had done? Have you attempted even when alone in the shower to do the things of which you’ve thought? Do you believe that given the same circumstance as you had before you could now do it better than you did?

Are you willing now to think about what you wish you had done and then practice. What you will find is that you end up giving yourself a break (and who deserves one any more than you do) and you’ve made progress toward broadening your abilities. At least you should be able to reframe the situation so that you can see that you do indeed have the ability necessary and that you are much better prepared now to handle this type of situation.

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