It’s a good use of time to celebrate gains in therapy. I sometimes wonder if the perception has been tainted by movies and media. There seems to be an understanding that “good therapy” occurs only when you cry or unearth the deepest trenches of personal suffering.
To be fair, the Kleenex is there for a reason. Exploring pain is an important part of the process. But so, too, is the celebration of joy, gratitude and feeling moved within the self. As well as all those hard-earned gains from deep personal growth.
Processing positive, affective experiences activates hidden resources. Shame turns into vitality, fear into excitement and loneliness into connection.
Delighting in another’s discovery of their innate capacities is akin to a mother celebrating her infant’s new found capabilities. Through attunement, reflection, playfulness, valuing and affirming clients are able to gain mastery over warded-off feelings. This builds resilience.
Access to experiences of interests, eagerness and excitement is what distinguishes resilient people from those low in the trait. Far from being a waste of time, celebrating the good is an extremely useful tool to broaden, build and consolidate therapeutic gains.