I know as a kid one of my favourite films was Karate Kid. As a young boy I had many experiences of feeling intimidated by older boys (and sometimes men). The thought of being able to learn a way of protecting myself was very appealing. If you have ever watched the film, you will remember that it was not until Daniel met his teacher Mr Miyagi and learned Karate, was he able to protect himself effectively.
I think this story points toward a very powerful architype: ‘The Mentor’. There is truth in the idea that we all need others to learn and grow. However important the role of the Mentor plays he/she is not the Hero of the story. The Hero of this particular film is Daniel. The story captured my interest because I was able to live (as a young boy) through Daniel (who I identified with) and experience second hand the Arc of change that Daniel experienced. He overcame his fear, his feelings of self-doubt; he discovered his courage and self-confidence. He was then able to use these discoveries to triumph over adversities and get the girl. Now what little boy would not want that.
I have described very briefly a version of the ‘Hero’s’ journey. I often get asked, what is counselling and what does it do? Simply it is your Hero’s journey. There maybe things you have to confront. There may be things of you have to learn and let go of. There may be things about yourself that you discover that you never new existed.
Those who start counselling are embarking on a very real adventure. As with any adventure there are very real risks and uncertainties. However, there is change and there can be change, growth and in this case Triumph. What is always True for the Hero is: that their life is always irreversibly altered by the end of the Story.