I was recording some ideas on my Sony tape recorder, and suddenly the red record button wouldn’t depress. I pressed again, and nothing happened. Something was stuck. I pressed several times, changing the force each time, and the button finally went down. I don’t know what was sticking, or why the button finally went down, but it worked.
Have you ever faced that kind of a situation, wherein you attempt a repair and you do something that you can see or feel, but you don’t really know what you’re doing. You just know that if you touch the thing in a certain way, pushing it backwards and forward four times other events take place and they are pleasing – they are right – they are good. Your effort doesn’t work every time, but when it works life is perfect again.
If you think about that kind of situation, such as pressing something yet not knowing exactly what it is attached to, yet you press it three or four times and something happens at some other level, in some other connectedness, in some other interface then something goes, something works. That is similar to the healing arts. The doctors frequently don’t know what the hell they are doing, but they press, push, probe, stick and something happens. That diligence and persevering occurs in psychotherapy.
“Yes, Mrs. Schutlz, I know it seems that we are just talking, but one of the things that happens is that you will undergo some genuine changes. Usually these changes are of a beneficial sort, and after some time everything will work out fine.
“Yes Doctor, but how does it work, how come the talking works.”
“It works – it just works! Don’t you like to be talked to; don’t you feel better when you get talked to? Don’t be silly now; everybody likes to be talked to.”
“But Doctor that’s just paying money to be talked to?”
“You’re right Mrs. Schultz, but something good happens. It is like pulling bones, pressing muscles, or stimulating a cell in the brain with three or four drops of a chemical. Two pulls, or press and three drops and something happens that is good. Who knows why, or how, or what actually happens?
Whatever happens, it feels good. If it doesn’t, we try something else until it feels good. Feeling good won’t happen every time, but sooner or later therapy will work just like my Sony tape recorder. Mrs. Schultz, did I ever tell you about my Sony tape recorder?”