Just at the moment I am close to obsessed with metaphor. As a coach I am increasingly fascinated by words and the meaning of words. I know I use language in ways that may confuse others: I play with words and love puns. However, I am aware that that tendency has to be watched if I am not absolutely certain my client has the same associations for words that I do. Metaphor however, has the ability to transcend many language and cultural barriers. ‘What is that like?’ ‘How would you describe that?’ ‘Are there any images or stories that idea links with?’ These sorts of ‘openers’ even if not all strictly metaphors, frequently lead to images, parables, stories, similes, that allow the conversation to broaden and deepen.
Last evening, on Radio 4 (Oct 27th) I think around 8.30, there was a brilliant talk by Dr. Phil someone who was speaking on the subject of metaphor for medical insight: GPs, trauma supporters and cancer sufferers all spoke about words and images to describe, and alleviate pain. There was also a short section on Clean Language and Jenny Rogers spoke too, about coaching and metaphor. So others out there share my interest. There were also fascinating book references, so I must leap off to the ‘play again’ function on R4 and take sensible notes this time. Just thought you might be interested.