A well directed mind is a powerful tool. We all have the potential for positive change, even the seeds of greatness. Regrettably it doesn't seem that many of us are able to overcome the setbacks that keep us from fulfilling our dreams. We get side-tracked along the way. A loved one dies unexpectedly. A job we had pinned our hopes on doesn't materialize. Or perhaps there is no obvious precursor to our unhappiness.
Erich Fromm believes that modern society offers us a choice between a life of having or being. Choosing acquisitiveness brings unhappiness, greed, and envy, while choosing being leads to a life of creativity and meaningfulness. There are many alternative paths that leads us away from rather than towards the kind of life we desire. Sometimes its hard to know in which direction to head. A different perspective may offer hope. This is where a therapist can be invaluable. The insidiousness of mental illness can be in its ability to remain hidden from the person acting it out. Sometimes we're the last person to recognize what is happening to us!
Therapy is the place to work these things out. The unconscious could be compared to the force of nature. There is great power in the unconscious if we could learn to recognize and direct it. Like the surfer who learns to ride the waves, we can gain a measure of awareness and control over what previously seemed uncontrollable.