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Musical meaning through Covid.

My identity and sense of self as a psychotherapist and a musician is in constant ebb and flow alongside the many other ‘parts’ of my personality. I’m a father, a husband, a son, a friend, a teacher etc, etc. Holding this concept of ‘multiplicity’ (we all have many unique personal flavours) has been a key factor during the pandemic. All of my clients have been impacted in some way and many are struggling with the loss of identity and hope for their future.

When exploring these positions with them I often ask what ‘other’ parts they have and when are these useful? This simple act of a reframe can enable a new openness to the myriad of other components of ourselves whilst respecting the current struggle of the ‘musician’ part.

Another area of this ‘parts’ work is in the exploration of how these have helped and what they gave us or even protected us from. Often we forget why we became musicians or artists. Over time we remain in autopilot and by re-examining these internal structures we can get a fresh perspective of both the good and bad.

By gaining an overview of our process in becoming musicians it can potentially help to stabilise some of our anxieties in these ‘unknown’ times.

For those looking for some practical suggestions, I would consider writing a reflective journal considering the following.

  1. When did you first want to be a musician? What was this like? What was going on for you?

  2. How did becoming a musician help or hinder you?

  3. What other important ‘parts’ of yourself have been rediscovered in these current times?

As always, the suggestions above are of self exploratory nature. If you find yourself feeling overwhelmed or over anxious please contact a mental health professional.

This article is part of a research component for a DPsych forthcoming publication. Copyright A.Ficek

Not to be reproduced without permission.


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