In coming to see me, people have to choose therapy. I don’t choose them — they choose me.
Sometimes, however, clients will cut off their therapy unilaterally without consulting me. And I feel powerless to change the situation. Sad and stuck and impotent because I’ve been suddenly eliminated in the discussion about their life.
But I do not exhaust myself chasing them down. I do not try to convince them that they need to return. Even if that’s what I believe deep down in my core.
Because the choice is yours, not mine.
It cannot be mine, because I cannot make you want to change. I cannot make you want to put in the work. I cannot make you choose therapy.
In fact, the very act of my attempting to challenge your decision to leave and convince you that you should return is more likely to accomplish the opposite. To push you further away. To make you question why I’m so eager to get you back.
I cannot choose you; you must choose yourself and the therapeutic process. And you must keep choosing it.
I’ve already made my choice about my own personal growth, over and over again. And now it’s easy, because the choices make me. There comes a point when the choice isn’t a choice — it’s simply continual alignment with growth and transformation — the very purpose of life.
Vibrancy is life. Openness to new experiences is life. Wanting to experience more — more variety, more depth, more contentment, more creativity — is the only thing you can do. It takes you over.
Or it doesn’t. And you remain stuck in place.
Should you choose therapy? Can you continue to choose it?
Ask yourself these questions:
- Do you want to stay on the sidelines of life forever — just watching it and not participating?
- Do you want to stay so isolated that you are not even connected to things you love?
- Will you stay dispassionate — even to things you hate?
Ultimately, it’s your choice.