I find most of my clients come to me are caught up in a negative relationship pattern and plagued with a sense of self that feels helpless, angry, shut down, or anxious. After listening to my clients long enough for us to develop a bond of trust, I redirect the client to work on their actual problem. Most people experience the world, as if they are a product of their experience (ex: If their partner is nice, they feel connected, if their boss is an asshole, then they feel helpless and angry). Instead of listening to my clients retell their story, over and over, concerning how much of a victim they are of their circumstances, I catch them when they are in brief moments that they have access to their core organic self. I have them become aware of how their body feels, what type of emotions they have, and the quality of their thoughts when they are in their organic self. Inevitably, their strategic self (anxious, perfectionist, know it all, victim, not allowed to have a voice, etc) jumps back in and starts telling it’s story. Many therapists will listen patiently and be compassionate when these strategic selves start looping. I’ve been trained to do that and have found it quite helpful over a long period of time. But I’ve learned that it is more effective to compassionately jump in and help the client become aware that a “different self”, a “strategic self” that they inherited from their family, school, culture, patriarchy, etc. jumped in. They are often suprised and unaware at first that this different self jumped in. I’ll have them study what it is like when they are living in the patterened neuropathways in their head that their organic self previously learned as a way of adapting to stress in the world. Their “strategic self” has access to part of their core but also is tainted and has a distortion that causes them to suffer. So, the work of the therapy is to help the client become aware that there are different states that we live in. Then to help the client learn how to shift the state that they are living in. Instead of “fixing” the wounded strategies, the therapy is about empowering the client to shift themselves into a superior state of mind that they internalize and own as who they are. So, the work presumes the answer is already in the client, but the client does not have the ability to access it sufficiently. I’m a mid-wife (or mid-husband) per se for the client to become aware of and live from their organic self. When they make the shift to their core spiritual self, they no longer are tained by the dilemmas that they brought to therapy. Their organic self has normal feelings and responses on how to deal with a cranky partner that won’t listen or a boss who does not appreciate who you are. The strategy self doesn’t know how to do anything other than what it previously was pre-programed to do. So, the work is engaging. I listen, but I don’t just sit there and watch you wallow. I help you become aware of the one who knows they don’t want to wallow, the one who knows they deserve more. The organic self already knows what to do. When my clients live from their organic selves, their whole lives change because they become committed to being who they are rather than the problematic patterning they’ve inherited. And what is great about this approach which is better than traditional psychotherapy is that it moves so much quicker. Instead of becoming dependent on the therapist’s compassion to grow, the client is empowered to use the obstacles in life as opportunities to strengthen their ability to send their core self in rather than their strategies.