Anger Management - Apples Vs. Oranges
Over the years, and on an hourly basis, people continue to enter my office. They all do so whilst firmly grasping their apple. Moreover, they declare, "This is my apple, the bane of my life; if you can fix it for me, everything will be perfect once more". Now the apple is different for each person. For some it is a symptom: depression, anxiety, OCD, anger, infidelity, etc. For others it may be a maladaptive coping-mechanism: over-drinking, overeating, overworking, smoking, infidelity (once again), drugs, etc.
Unfortunately, the widely held psychological belief and practise within Western Australia (and indeed the expectation of the apple’s owner) is that success is to be found focussing upon, and consequently removing, the apple. All perfectly logical so far. However, in practise, the logical path can often be a jolly misleading one. For if one does just that, the very best that can be hoped for, is the eradication of the apple. But (I hear you all shout), surely that’s the swiftest and most logical direction to take? Swift and logical… yes; psychotherapeutically prudent… no, not at all.
Why so? Well in point of fact (and in my experience) I find that the solitary eradication of the apple, merely brings about the genesis of yet another apple to replace it (in a process I call symptom substitution).
Q: So how can I expect the psychotherapeutic approach to differ at Analysis WA…?
A: Well here the focus will be on the orange. The orange is not only the originator of that apple, but every apple. If instead of the apple being the focus, the orange is addressed and accordingly eradicated; then not only does their presenting apple vanish, but all future apples are likewise obviated.
relinquish habitual behaviour
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Here, the focus will be on the orange. The orange is not only the originator of that apple, but every apple.