In the last year I’ve noticed a real trend amongst my coaching clients to reference movies and their characters. Sometimes it’s been uplifting true stories such as The Blind Side, other times it has been a wholly fictional piece such as Inception. Both of these films are in fact useful to a coach either as aspirational behaviour (Blind Side) or deconstructing the reality of the world a client lives in (Inception). Leaving that aside for now, it got me thinking about why movies kept coming up, whether people were watching more DVDs at home as the recession bites? I did some research and it seems that actually other activities attract people more. As I thought about it though, the more it niggled me. I compiled a list of what movies were coming up. They broadly broke in to 3 categories.
- Escaping. Romance, comedies, action, complete escapism from the world around us. E.g Love Actually,
- Oldies. Comforting films from an earlier period, either relating to a better, kinder time or perhaps to certain values and behaviours the viewers held dear. E.g. It’s a wonderful life,
- Uplifting. Films which encouraged the viewer to reach for more, be more, do more in their lives, E.g Dead Poets Society. Good Will Hunting
The common thread (as I see it) is that we are all seeking ways to explain and codify our lives. Stories have always been important and right now with the recession biting harder and deeper we want better stories, better metaphors to help make sense of our existence, to assure us of our place in the world. Movies offer that, with the combination of great visuals, great music and a dash of wish fulfillment making a potent combination. I don’t think there is anything wrong with such escapism, it can be useful to identify with a character, it can help you find your own voice or measure yourself against their perceived values and of course in some cases it can be an inspiration.
So a call to action, notice what stories are appealing to you right now, no judgement required, just notice and see where it leads you. Oh and let me know what is speaking to you, either below in the comments or find me on twitter @projectlibero