Notice what works

Susan Pye Brokaw, MA, LMFT

Adlerian Network Founder

Adler emphasized that we should work together as equals, cooperating with others for the commonweal (the common welfare).  What I notice during this difficult time is how everyone is concerned with the common welfare and taking action.  People are doing what will stop the spread of the virus.  They are working together to create and produce solutions.  Even the Congress is working together for a change and have quickly passed the much-needed bills to help out.  Amazing!

Let us remember and point out to those around us that this is what works.  Look what happens when we put aside our differences and all work together for the common good.  What amazing things could be accomplished if this was continued after we have gotten through this difficult time.

Fear and the coronavirus

Susan Pye Brokaw, MA, LMFT

Adlerian Network founder

This is a time when it is important that mental health professionals help their clients deal with the coronavirus.  Fear compromises the immune system. Let’s focus on how we can be encouraging and optimistic in this difficult time.

We are told that if you keep six feet away from others and wash our hands a lot, we can avoid getting the virus.  Staying at home as much as you can will also help. If you follow the instructions you won’t get sick. That is good news.

Let’s look at other good news.  The malaria drug was found to be 100% effective in France and is being used here now.  If you get sick, you can ask to be given the drug. If everyone who is sick gets tested in two weeks and is isolated, there will be no one out there to pass the virus to others.  So be sure if you have symptoms to be tested immediately. If you aren’t sick, keep your distance from others. 

The important message is that this is a temporary problem.  Fewer people have died from this than from the regular flu. We will get through this soon.  So, encourage clients to follow the rules and they will be fine.

I’m a grateful American

By Susan Pye Brokaw, MA, LMFT

Adlerian Network founder

I hear all the negativity spoken, on TV, on Facebook and even from some of my friends and colleagues.  This is really profound discouragement that is pervasive in the best country on the planet. It discourages me when I keep hearing it and reading it and hearing it.  Alfred Adler emphasized the use of encouragement. How do we do that in this situation?

I am a grateful American.  I will share one thing that I am grateful for regarding our country.  I started out as a social worker in the ‘60s. I was disheartened as I saw how black and Native American people were given a hand out instead of a hand up.  Welfare was discouraging and it was almost impossible to rise out of poverty under the system that was created. It is hard to feel worthwhile in these circumstances.  The plight of minorities has been disturbing to me for years. Nothing changed until recently.

I am so grateful that unemployment in this country is the lowest that it has been in about 50 years.  Finally, these folks are able to take pride in supporting themselves and their families.

Could we all start expressing on social media our gratitude for the good things that are happening in our country?  What would happen if we all bombarded social media with what we are grateful for in the country? I think it would be a refreshing change and maybe others would join us.  This is a very simple exercise in social interest.  

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Social interest: Adler’s words lead to a blog

Alfred Adler, in his paper entitled  “On the Origin of the Striving for Superiority and of Social Interest,” made the following comment:  “The goal that is best suited for perfection would have to be a goal which signifies the ideal community of all mankind, the ultimate fulfillment of evolution.”

We can do this by ourselves, in our family, at work or in our community.  We can teach our children to do this as well. We should always keep in mind ways that we might contribute.

I have recently cut back to working part-time while all my friends are fully retired.  With some additional time on my hands, I pondered the question of what more I could do.  It came to me that with all the expertise that I have in dealing with ADHD, I could start a blog.  That is rather humorous when you know that I am so technologically illiterate that I know almost nothing about a blog and have never known how to even find a blog.

However, it seemed like that would be a good use of my talent and could help a lot of people who struggle dealing with this condition.  So, I found someone to help me and I launched my blog. I don’t know if many will find it. But I know that those who do will be helped and with help, they can make the world a better place.

We all can ask ourselves if there is another way that we can contribute in a way that makes the world a better place.

If you would like to check out my new blog or know someone who might be interested, go to https://www.adhdexperthelp.com/.  I hope you like it.

Susan Pye Brokaw

Founder, Adlerian Network

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