AWARENESS IN EVERYDAY LIFE

AWARENESS IN EVERYDAY LIFE

 

In spite of the different reasons for which we decide to start seeing a therapist, we all have in common this positive intention and interest for getting to know ourselves better and creating our lives in a way that will be fulfilling for us. Looking at ourselves from this perspective, enables us to get to know ourselves, to revive the parts of ourselves that had no chance to be lived out before, and to manifest these parts in our everyday life. It is this aspect – living our own self from the core of our being, and following the needs of our hearts and our truths – that could make us feel truly fulfilled.

 

However, the extent to which a person will transfer the experience of self-development to his/her everyday life is closely related to the strength of their intention. It is the people with a healthy intention to creatively experience and integrate this in their everyday life, who achieve the deepest changes.

Contrary to this, achieving practical changes is slower for people with damaged intention and personal will. The state of our intention largely depends on experiences that we had with our parents and early authorities when we were children. The part referring to the early experiences, especially early childhood, is connected with the level of healthy support that the child received in the period when it was developing its no, that is, when it opposed the external authority. This is usually the period of early socialisation, around the age of two, when children learn to walk and run, and their vocabulary becomes large enough to enable them to clearly express and verbalise their discomfort and dissatisfaction. Unreasonable or harsh breaking of the child’s will in this age may also cause damage to a healthy aspect of the child’s intention, which is later reflected in the adult life. This results in the feeling of guilt, inferiority complex, shame, insecurity and fear of confrontation. Such childhood traumas do not remain in our conscious memory, but in the implicit body-memory as reactive mechanisms imposing restrictions on our ability to act and stand up for ourselves as adults.

 

Due to different states of will and intention, in working with a person we put an emphasis on different issues. In case of damaged intention we build up a confrontation capacity of a person, which includes working on frustration, aggression and fear of confrontation due to which the person gives up on him/herself. In this respect, we often start from the very foundations of personality, from the regressive emotions corresponding to a one-year-old, and then gradually work our way up towards adulthood.

Individual work with a therapist is also required due to the fact that avoiding discomfort is in human nature. It is typical for a child’s ego to avoid and supress pain and discomfort, and to persist in creating defence strategies in order to avoid them in future. By avoiding the feelings of earlier unpleasant or painful experiences we prevent our subsequent emotional development. The ability to cope with the certain emotion, to allow ourselves to feel that emotion, to express it or keep it inside ourselves without expressing it, if so decided, empowers our emotional self, that is, our ability to control our emotions, as opposed to letting our emotions control us. This is a natural way of growing up and reaching the spiritual maturity.

If we are afraid of our own suppressed aggression, we will also be afraid of our own strength. If we are afraid of pain, we will also be afraid of our capacity to enjoy. If we are afraid of sorrow, we will also be afraid of our need, and if we are afraid of our need, we will also be afraid of our own fulfilment. If we are afraid of being direct, we will not dare to enjoy any kind of pleasure and we will have to hide it.

This research within our insides and within the aforementioned and other emotional states, is in our work often accompanied by a cathartic emotional experience…

This research within our insides and within the aforementioned and other emotional states, is in our work often accompanied by a cathartic emotional experience that includes a wide range of reactions. These cathartic experiences of completeness, freedom of expression and taking responsibility, create a new emotional base of experiences which is then reflected in our everyday relationships.

 

Furthermore, this type of work is followed by an increased feeling of satisfaction with life. Searching through our own depths, experiencing different emotional states and wrapping up of old stories at the same time reduce the fear of life, destiny or contact. In that sense, we are no longer trying to avoid any discomfort in life, but we approach all aspects of our lives, which could remain similar as they were before, by being more open and accepting. This brings us the feeling of satisfaction and fulfilment. This process also changes our motivation, which becomes directed towards the fulfilment of our essential needs.

The majority of spiritual schools, as well as the transpersonal and integrative psychology, talk about two personality centres. One refers to the separated external self or ego, dealt with by the psychology of ego. The other is the higher self or spiritual/permanent self, as referred to by the mentioned psychological and spiritual schools. Our higher self is not just an idea, but also an actual experience in which the centre of our identification moves from the separated ego towards the identification with the actual centre of the psyche, which Jung referred to as selfhood, as the centre of our being, located at the centre of our body and at the centre of the psychological experience of ourselves. In this way our perception of ourselves becomes integral – physical, emotional and mental.

 

 

 

The goal of our spiritual development is to unite the external separated self, that is, the defence ego, with the internal, wider and more complete part of our being – with the essential or permanent personality.

 

Such an integrated experience, when the external self finds its internal basis in the essence or higher self, could be referred to as, homecoming, finding yourself, uniting yourself, or internal marriage, which represent only a few of the names given by different spiritual schools when describing the same experience.

 

When we reach this phase of development, our separated external self is seldom parted from its source in a way it used to be. Such united and connected – integrated – life of the ego and the essence we call the life from personal essence. The increase of integrity, authenticity, paying attention to actual needs and overcoming of fear and selfishness are only a few characteristics resulting from this unification.

Viewed from the outside, everyday life looks the same as before, but our presence in it is deeper and our satisfaction greater. Each of its manifestations is followed with the feeling that everything is fine, that life is good and that we are – regardless of the phases we are going through – fine.

 

On the other hand, the feeling of disunity between the external and internal self is the source of the feelings of separateness and dissatisfaction.

The way out of this is in revisiting the blocked emotions or emotional pain. By entering the emotional process, we let go of any dissatisfaction, remove the barriers and create a space which is free of any pain from the past.

In that sense, the integrative psychotherapy primarily represents the first step towards a relief of any painful emotions. However, in a deeper sense it also leads to the unity with our true self, with our essence.

In this process, the psychological and spiritual components overlap, thus leading towards the spiritual integration. Taking the responsibility for our own ego, that is, for maturing in the sense of psychology, results in the transcendence of ego, that is, maturing in the sense of spirituality.

 

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