What if you went to bed tonight, and when you woke up tomorrow, you discovered a miracle had happened? The problem you’ve been grappling with had been solved? How would you know the miracle had occurred? What would be the first thing you would notice?
The Miracle Question, meant to inspire a visualization of the life we want to be living, in contrast to the one we are – the life we would be living if we jumped over the barriers between us and our ideal – was developed at a Family Therapy Center in the mid-1980s. It was intended, in part, to help clients figure out their goals for therapy. Researchers found that the more clients understood their goals, the more likely they were to achieve them. The Miracle Question has since become a pillar of solution-focused brief therapy, a form of psychotherapy focused on helping clients build solutions for the future rather than solve problems of the past.
Those in pursuit of their career niche may answer that they would know a miracle had occurred when they woke up and felt excited to go to work. Instead of counting off the days to the weekend they would be focused on living the present day. Or they may answer that the nagging uncertainty about what they should do with their life had gone away.
Figuring out fulfillment, like an issue we may choose to address through therapy, is far from an overnight miracle and is often not something we can clearly visualize or articulate. But what would happen if we let go of all the reasons that lead us to believe there were no options? What if we let go of the past hurts, the ways we’ve been minimized, overshadowed, and outdone, and instead focused solely on the future? Would we see more clearly if we only looked forward, evaluating each obstacle ahead of us instead of reliving the ones in our past? What would happen if we took time to ask ourselves what it would look like if a miracle occurred?