“Ubuntu, I Am Because Of You.”

Ubuntu “I am, because of you”

Ubuntu, is a Southern African “Nguni Bantu” term meaning roughly “ I am because of you.” With this comes the illustrative story of an adult elephant that was born with front legs shorter than the back legs. Trying to get up a steep incline one day was impossible, in her attempt to follow her herd. Two male elephants noticed, and got behind her, slowly pushed her forward up the hill, not unlike a railway engine. Another problem was presented when she wanted to go down the other side. In danger of toppling over the two elephants got in front of her, and with their bodies as a breaking system guided her down.

This wonderfully illustrates “Ubuntu, I am because of you.”
The goal of therapy is to help another who for one reason or another is emotionally handicapped in moving forward. And it does take a community. The issue may be anger, depression, anxiety, fear. No matter, the individual in question, young or old, male or female, has an issue that needs attention. They may not even know what the problem is, but they do know that it affects their relationships with others. They probably go to therapy on the advice of another who cares for them.

The therapist upon listening carefully helps the client discover the why behind the emotional immobility, and the relational problems brought on as a result. Through more listening, trust building, empathy, a partnership develops. The partnership moves to agreed upon goals and objectives, coping strategies, leading towards emotional health.

The “I am because of you” becomes a reality. The you in the narrative is made up of the various people helping the client reach a place of health. They are, the friend or loved one who advised towards counseling, the therapist, the Dr who may have prescribed counseling or medicine, and the individual themselves who took the risk forward, those who encouraged along the way. As humans we exist and learn to thrive best in community.

So, “I am because of you.” Where can you fit in that healing narrative today?

www.bryanhagerman.ca I am, “The Therapist At Large.” 902 471 7919. I do Skype therapy.