The glasses analogy offers us a clearer understanding of how easy it is to see something in a particular way – your perspective. By changing the way we see something, reframing our perspective, everything can look very different. Say for example you just started a new job and when you opened your first paycheck it was $100 less than you thought it should be. How you interpret and then respond to this event is influenced by your perspective. If for example you see, or already believe, that all workplaces are bad and run by evil people out to exploit you, you might be angry or even outraged. With this perspective you might go in Monday morning demanding an explanation. If however you believe that workplaces are positive places, run by people who are inherently good or trying their best, you will respond differently. With this perspective you might see the paycheck incident as a mistake, made by well meaning people, in which case you would go in on Monday morning and pleasantly let the Finance staff know about the error.
What Reframing is NOT
Reframing is not about pretending that everything is great for the client. Rather, it offers and invites more and varied ways for clients to consider the problems they are facing and to find new ways to meet the challenges.
Re-framing is not about changing your client’s mind. Instead, it is about creating a shift in consciousness to help them see things in a whole new way. This shift requires that they be willing to understand that there is more than one way to look at a given situation. It’s about opening thought and showing a fuller range of possibilities. It can also be about finding “the silver lining” to a cloud.