A right metaphor can change your life
she knew that Martin needed strength, she also knew she had to break his pattern of fear as well her own. She took immediate action and accomplished it all with one statement when he opened his eyes she smiled brightly and said, "It is just a movie babe! it is only a movie! " Martin said that in that moment he knew he was going to make it and begin to heal.
Photo Credit : happyho,
A metaphor could save your life. Let me explain you with an example from the life of famous hollywood film director Martin Sheen's Life. Martin and Janet Sheen have been married for close to thirty years and one of the things that was most respected about them was that they were absolute support for each other, for their family and for any one in need. As much as the public knows Martin is a committed giver, they have no idea how much he and Janet do together for others on a daily basis. These two people are the epitome of integrity. Their metaphor for humanity s that of "One Giant Family", and as a result they feel the deepest caring and compassion even for complete strangers.
While Martin was making Apocalypse he had seen life as something to fear. Now he sees it as an intriguing challenge. Why? his new metaphor is that life is a mystery. He loves the mystery of being a human being, the wonder and sense of possibility that unfolds with his experience of each new day.
What changed his metaphor? intense pain. Apocalypse was shot deep in the jungles of Philippines. The shooting schedule was normally Monday through Friday, and usually on friday night, Martin and Janet would make the two and half hours drive for a weekend retreat in Manila. On one week end, though, Martin had to stay for an additional Saturday morning shoot. (Janet had already committed to going into town to purchase a glass eye for a crew man who was so poor he was unable to buy his own, so she went ahead.) that night, Martin found himself alone, tossing and turning, preparing profusely and begging to experience intense pain. By Morning he begin to have a massive heart attack. Portions of his body became numb and paralysed. He felt to the ground and through nothing but the sheer power of his will crawled out the door and yelled for help. Lying there on the ground, he said he actually had the experience of dying. All of a sudden, everything felt calm and smooth. He could see himself moving across the lake and the water in the distance. He thought to himself, Oh this what dying is, and it was then that he realised that he was not afraid of dying that he had been really afraid of life! in that moment, he realised that life itself was the real challenge. Instantly, he made the decision to live. He mustard every ounce of energy he had left, pushing his arm out to grab some grass with total focus, he slowly pulled it up to his nose. He could barely feel a thing. The moment he smelled the grass, the pain came back and he knew he was alive. He kept fighting.
When the crew men discovered him, they were sure he would die. Both the looks on their faces and their comments made Martin questioned his own ability to make it. He became to loose his strength realising there was no time, the top pilot on the Apocalypse crew risked his own life and flew the helicopter sideways through thirty to forty knot winds in order to get him to the hospital in town. Upon arriving, he was put on a stretcher and wheeled into the emergency room, where he continued to receive both subliminal and overt messages that he was going to die he was becoming weaker with each moment. Then Janet came in. All she would heard was that he had a heart stroke, but than the doctors informed her of the graveness of his condition. She refuse to accept -she knew that Martin needed strength, she also knew she had to break his pattern of fear as well her own. She took immediate action and accomplished it all with one statement when he opened his eyes she smiled brightly and said, "It is just a movie babe! it is only a movie! " Martin said that in that moment he knew he was going to make it and begin to heal. a great metaphor! instantly, the problem did not seem so great - it was something that he could handle. " A movie certainly is not worth having a heart attach over" was the implied message, but also, subliminally, I believed the metaphor cut even deeper. After all, the pain you are experiencing when you make a movie never lasts. It is not real, and at the same point director will say, "Cut" Janet's use of this brilliant pattern interrupt, this single metaphor, helped Martin to marshall his resources and so this day he believes it saved his life.
Disclaimer: This article was originally published on HappyHo and is republished here with permission.
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