I am one of the most highly trained therapists I know. Yes, you did read that correctly. I do not claim to be the best therapist, but I know very well how well trained I have been. And continue to be. See for me, my training did not end when I qualified in 2008. Rather that was when my training began.
We all of us (therapists) train on the job. It is a prerequisite in the field. You learn as you work, and you work as you learn. The learning cannot be separated from the working, though your work is protected through clinical supervision and by the ethical framework(s) to which you subscribe.
I will, I think, always be learning. I live to learn, and learn to live. The day I stop learning will, I hope, be the day I die. Or at least retire. Doing this work, I would be useless, if not dangerous, were I not constantly inspired and motivated to deepen that which I believe I know and that which I hope to someday understand.
For, as I was reflecting on this afternoon with a group of colleagues who had just met one another for the first time, making meaning is both important and valuable.
A lot of my work in the therapy room is highly creative. Which isn't to say that I use rely heavily on the Arts (though I hope to do so more in future). The creativity is about meaning-making. Coming to understand through collaboration, co-construction and co-creation.
T.S. Eliot, in his Four Quartets referred to having the experience, but missing the meaning. Therapy is an opportunity to address that void, and explore its implications which can often be longstanding and life changing.
I am interested in making meaning, not for meaning's sake, but for the containment it can entail. To make sense of something can be extremely affirming, and rewarding. It can comprise a resolution and, in that, something of a homecoming. To comprehend something, is to alter one's relationship to that which was formerly not understood, seemingly beyond understanding, or simply not known. The impact can be far reaching. It can, and frequently does, shift the sense we hold of ourselves.
Which is why it is important to hold this sense so lightly. We are all of us in transition. Ever changing, and in flux. Never still, and never constant. Always moving, always developing.
Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart
and try to love the questions themselves,
like locked rooms and like books that are now written in a very foreign tongue.
Do not now seek the answers,
which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them.
And the point is, to live everything.
Live the questions now.
Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it,
live along some distant day into the answer.
Raine Maria Rilke (1875-1926)