Ham and Eggs

People who come to see me for help with personal problems soon learn that I am fond of metaphors and analogies.  It's both the way I think, and I've learned over the years that the human brain works best not just when using words but also when it has images that it can utilize to take a leap forward in understanding a concept.

This is why I've developed an extensive collection of what I call "therapeutic metaphors".  These are generally images, stories, parables or even jokes that highlight a point that can be useful in helping a person deal with some vexing problem.

The metaphor that I have in mind today is what I call the difference between ham and eggs.  Many people find this a mouth-watering breakfast combination (although many other people avoid one or both of these foods for religious or ethical reasons).  Either way, "ham and eggs" is one of those combinations that are often paired together.

So what does this have to do with psychotherapy, counseling and personal growth?  

Two animals are necessary to create ham and eggs: a pig and a chicken. But their contribution is fundamentally different: the chicken is involved in the process, but the pig is thoroughly committed!  One can walk away, while the other is all in

Sometimes the process of personal growth requires the same level of commitment. There is the change you can be a part of, and then there is the type of change that requires absolutely everything you can give.  If you are at a turning point in your life, are you about as involved as the chicken or are you willing to commit everything you have -- everything you are -- to the process?  

As I've asked before in another post, what are you willing to do?  That's often the measure of what you are likely to attain.


Bill Herring LCSW, CSAT is an Atlanta counselor and psychotherapist.  He has maintained a general adult private practice for 25 years.  He has made a name for himself helping people solve sexual issues that get in the the way of a healthy relationship with self or others.