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February 20, 2018

The Elegant Solution

By Dr. Richard Boyum

In everyday life and in counseling sessions as well, people/clients often come looking for the right answer. Clients often believe they have done the wrong thing or they are afraid of doing the wrong thing. The problem with right and wrong in everyday behavior is that it provides few choices. Most of us as counselors know that it is often from our failures that we learn the most. In working with clients we need to introduce language that allows them to get away from the false dichotomy of right versus wrong. Very often we are helping clients make what is the most appropriate decision under the circumstances. In addition we are attempting to help clients learn from their past or present experience.

We know the choice is the key component to psychological hardiness. As counselors we want to allow the most choices possible and create positive frame works for clients to see those choices. In reality we are trying to produce for clients the concept of the Elegant Solutions. That these choices can be shifted and changed depending upon the circumstances. In addition, upon reflection, there is much that can be learned from this choice process. The Elegant Solution then is for the counselor and client working together to come up with both the appropriate alternatives under the circumstances and the types of learning that can be experienced from these choices. In so doing, the diversity and growth potential in life is enhanced. Counselors act as catalysts in enhancing the growth of our clients as they make progress in defining and refining their elegant solutions.