Experiential wisdom therapy

Wisdom and wellness

Wisdom in every way is related to personal well being. It impacts one’s existence, actions and all interactions. While wisdom cannot be taught, it can be inculcated through direction. Through experiential wisdom buildup, one determines the course into hidden motives and intentions that drive human ability and performance. The path to this wisdom involves the recognition of personal thought, intent and behavior, and it’s subsequent application to life and its occurrences. To most it would seem that wisdom comes with grey hair; however wisdom is the ability to make right choices for oneself. Thus inculcating wisdom to do the right thing is essential for kids.

Wisdom-Knowledge debate

Wisdom is different from shallow learning, which only takes place at the exterior. In order to gain astuteness, one must dwell deeper into its fundamentals. A teenager may be fascinated with a flamboyant and attractive car but only an experienced automobile fabricator will be able to adjudge it earnestly, conduct a far-reaching scrutiny and then determine its real worth. He will not give his opinion based on an observed actuality, but instead, with his proficiency and expertise, he may fathom the depth of the distinctive aspects associated with the item in question. This ability, to understand the all-embracing reality in every pertinent situation, is wisdom.

Varieties of wisdom

There are three kinds of wisdom. Acquired wisdom is the acumen gained by listening to or reading the words of others. Here, the individual does not use a whole deal of the existent mental faculty, but learns merely through absorbing the words of another. Intellectual wisdom mandates that the individual use his or her own logic and reasoning to analyze the acquired wisdom. Self-questioning and counter questioning of what is heard or read leads to the option of dispute or agreement or acceptance. The third and most important kind is experiential wisdom. This is originated from within the self, based on one’s own personal experiences. Hence this is the highest level of wisdom that one can achieve.

Experiential wisdom

Experiential wisdom explicates learning through one’s own experience. For example, when children are taught about the various features of an elephant through books, charts and other audio-visual aids, it is a indirect learning, but when they go to the zoo and see the animal, observe its size, trunk and tusks, touch its skin, hear it trumpet; they gets a direct experience of the object of learning. This real and profound understanding based on one’s own sensory and cognitive experiences is firsthand empirical wisdom.

The therapeutic process

The aim is for children to assume an adaptive method of thinking, feeling and acting through their own experiences. If a child misbehaves at home, constantly breaks things, is defiant and rebellious, does not do homework, back answers and bickers; the therapist adopts experimental tasks through behavior modification and empirical protocols, and uses token economy to enable the child to experience the positive impact of good behavior. In due course of time, the child learns that positive behavior not only engenders a positive token but also brings in praise and appreciation from the therapist and acceptance from all those around. Children realize that consequences of behaving themselves are far better than those of misbehaving. When repeatedly asked to change, children are often unmotivated, however when they experience the benefits of positive change, the demeanor seems to last.

Therapeutic range

This therapy works in a variety of contexts like anxiety disorders, behavior disturbances and emotional problems. It is exceptionally helpful in treatment of specific phobias like fear of heights, water or closed places. With help from the therapist, the child is brought in contact with the feared stimulus and made to realize that the imagined fears are only the false and distorted anticipations. They may or may not turn into reality and the probability of a negative outcome is not reason enough to allow it to interfere with daily functioning. This allows children to learn from their own experience with the object of perceived danger, the faulty cognition that they are dwelling upon and the maladaptive behavior that is manifested by it.

Introspection and wisdom

Children don’t like when they are interrogated by others. They need to ask questions and get their own answers. The buildup of wisdom facilitated by a therapist allows children to look within themselves.

  • What did I do to deserve this?
  • Why did it have to happen to me?
  • Is there a way to make it better?
  • How can I prevent this next time?
  • Is this really in my own control?
  • I can guide myself to be better
  • I must take charge of my own life
  • I have the ability to change this
  • I can make it better for everyone

Wisdom = Wellness

Wellness comes from the practical application of wisdom

  • Following rulebooks for oneself
  • Restrain emotion to gain control
  • Self-protection from arrogance
  • Controlling impulsive instincts
  • Perception of one’s wrongdoing
  • Learning from one’s mistakes

Frequently Asked Questions

How is Wisdom = Common sense
Wisdom calls for the wit to apply judgments optimally. As Einstein rightly put it, common sense is a collection of prejudices acquired in the formative years of life. Therapy that inculcates common sense is the need of the hour. Experiential wisdom coaxes the individual to look at past experiences and make rational conclusions in order to alter the future occurrences and assure optimal outcomes.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can wisdom be a remedy?
Wisdom as a remedy helps people free themselves from obsessive preoccupations that are focused on negative appraisals of the self and environment. In the absence of emotional turmoil, one seldom introspects. Adversity thus acts as a boon and allows one to challenge the outcomes. Thus wisdom is a form of therapy in itself.