Storytelling in my opinion one of the best ways to engage with people. Some extremely complex topics can be easily communicated through the simplest of narratives. My Story time articles explore such topics through some of my favorite stories and fables.

The Duck and the Moon

A duck was swimming in the river looking for fish. The whole day passed, but she didn’t find any fish. When night came she saw the moon reflected on the water. She thought it was a fish and she dove down to catch it. The other ducks saw her, and they all made fun of her. The duck felt ashamed and timid. Later even when she saw a fish under water she did not try to catch it. After many weeks, she died of hunger.

- Leo Tolstoy

This is undoubtedly one of my favorite Leo Tolstoy stories. Such a simple tale but very poignant!

As a counsellor, I have often referred to it during my sessions to try to explain the impact of how much the opinions of others can affect our self-worth. If these opinions are negative we end up feeling devalued and worthless. When we seek our approval from outside it can leave us in a place of extreme tentativeness and dependence. A surprising number of people suffer from self-doubt and that comes in the way of living up to one’s fullest potential.

The first step towards achieving a positive self-worth is through developing self-compassion: treating yourself with kindness and love. Counselling can help you gain a strong sense of self by working on becoming more assertive, confident and self-aware.

With a healthy self-esteem, you can thrive and build a healthy relationship with yourself and in turn, with those around you.

Madhura Marathe

I am a professional counsellor based in Berlin offering counselling in English. I provide advice, support and guidance to clients undergoing stress, trauma, anxiety and relationship issues.