PREVIOUS: Confusion (#4d)
QUOTE: I simply can’t build my hopes on a foundation of confusion, misery & death….I think…peace & tranquility will return again” ~ Anne Frank
A Zen Buddhism story
Two monks were walking along the banks of a river. They saw a young woman who was afraid to cross. Although the monks had taken vows never to touch a woman, the older monk picked her up and carried her to the other side of the river. The younger monk was angry about it all day.
The two didn’t speak until sunset, when they were allowed to break their vow of silence. Then the angry younger monk accused the older monk of polluting not only himself but also the whole order. The older monk simply answered, “I put the woman down on the other side of the river early this morning. It is only you who have been carrying her around throughout the day.”
REVERSING life-long Confusion (cont)
3. Get VALIDATION. Because our parents provide no mirroring or very distorted feedback about who we are, we think we’re invisible – both internally to ourselves (“I don’t know who I am”), & externally to others (“No one gets me”).
As adults we can reverse this training by risking what we fear the most – any form of abandonment.
5. RESOLVE internal CONFLICTS
‘Being stuck’ always includes intense internal conflicts we don’t know how to resolve, or are unwilling to do the Recovery work it would take. They’re mainly in the form of frustrating disagreements – between the WIC (obeying the PP) & the ‘UNIT’ , or the Unit fighting against the PP’s injunctions – between old damage & new Mental Health
The goal of Recovery is to get the PP completely away from the WIC, so that both Healthy & Wounded parts of the Inner Child can align themselves with our healthy Adult/Parent.
STEPS: a. List real needs of each ego state – not the WIC’s outrageous demands. ‘Normal’ childhood needs: acceptance, approval, attention, emotional comfort, physical contact, security & stimulation
b. Write down conflicts between the various opposing ego states
c. Inner Selves must agree to help each other get those needs met, brainstorming as many ideas as possible
• When Loving Parent & Inner Child are on the same page about any given subject (shutting out the PP) – the conflict melts away & useful choices seem self-evident. Whatever actions we’ve been dragging our feet about suddenly are easy to do, & usually don’t take much time. But when we’re deep in our damage, all our time is spent obsessing, worrying, planning, complaining… but NOT acting
• Once we’re ready to focus on taking some kind of appropriate action, then we can consider the next part of the process. It may be something we’ve been thinking about for a long time but couldn’t move on, or something shifted in us so we formed a new way of thinking about the problem, which quickly translates into a new way of functioning
6. Take SOME Action
• Break down potential tasks into bite-size pieces – called process
• Identify the ones you know how to do, & the ones you don’t – & get the missing info
• Choose the simplest action you can & take it – one phone call, one evening class, one hour of internet searches…. You don’t have to know if the action will lead you where you want to end up. But it can tell you if you’re on the right track or not
• Don’t give up. Keep going & keep trying new things. It can eliminate some confusion & you’ve possibly learned something along the way (More….)
NEXT: What to do when Confused #1