The Power of Metaphors
As you are probably aware a metaphor is a figure of speech that, compares two unlike things without using the word “like” or “as”. Eg “Life is a roller coaster”. This metaphor is often used to describe how life has its highs and lows and to get the most out of life it is suggested you just enjoy the ride.
Using Metaphors with patients can help bring advice you are giving them to live and make it more meaningful for them. Here are two examples of metaphors I sometimes use with patients:
- When discussing weight loss progress I use “If you are on a bike ride and you fall off the best thing to do is get back on the saddle as quickly as possible to reach your destination”
- If a patient has been described antidepressants for the first time and they are unsure about being on this type of medication, I ask them if they had been diagnosed with asthma and prescribed an inhaler to help them breathe so they could get through the day would they be unsure about using the inhaler?
These are two I use regularly, but I am sure you have lots of other metaphors you could use to enhance your communication with patients and colleagues.
Thanks so much for taking the time to read Five Ways to Enhance Your Communication.
The next article in the 5W2 series is Five Ways to Create Successful Outcomes and will be with you soon, but in the meantime, if anyone wants to find out more about anything in this article or has any comments please get in touch via the details below.
“Emotional Development is Quality Improvement (QI) of the Mind.”
Jill Cruickshank is a Coaching and Development Consultant at Leading2Solutions, is qualified in NLP and CBT and is a Community Pharmacist.