Part of the fun of this project has been making the time, and giving myself permission to explore different options for self-expression and expansion. As I have gotten to know my own parts in all their glory I have found a level of self-acceptance that is unprecedented. Despite their burdens and their quirks I really love these unique elements of myself. I admire the ways they have found to cope and to thrive especially when it might have been easier to hide away and feel sorry for ourselves. My clients have inspired me in this, and have helped me to find the tools.
My number one tool is certainly a product of training in Internal Family Systems therapy. Through that training I have gotten clear about how my coping skills have developed, and in response to what. At the same time I learned not to take myself so seriously. That life is full of risks, but that it is necessary to confront risk, if we are ever to reach our rewards. This is it, the only life we have to work with (although my Buddhist parts remind me that we aren’t necessarily limited to only one).
So here is what I want to do; use this space to continue playing with ideas for creative recovery. If you’d be interested in joining me, and maybe letting me know what you think of these ideas as we go along, I’d be happy to have you with me on the journey. I will share some of the things that have been most meaningful to my own recovery, and will try to modify them where it seems appropriate to make best use of the activity in the service of Integration. That’s the term used for identifying change at the level of the nervous system, and sorting through some of those old burdens that have blocked development and engagement in the past. When you read the book, you will notice that it is the “I” in my acronym FLOWING; the part of the word that goes from passive to active. (That’s what is known as a teaser. I’ll continue to reference elements of the model, in no particular order, as we go along.)
The first activity I will suggest is keeping a journal – nothing fancy, just a place to track your efforts and reactions as we go along. If I have discovered anything, it is that the writing makes it real. Otherwise it is just a thought that goes away, or if we remember it at all, it looks different in hindsight. The act of writing is a way to engage those thoughts, to honor them (even the silly ones). Writing is an opportunity to Witness our own development, and by Witnessing, to acknowledge, participate with and even to heal old wounds. So let’s start there, and find out what happens next as we begin FLOWING together.