Recommended Reading for the Online Course: Unit 1
UNIT 1 – WHY do you think you do WHAT you do?
Introducing the Sense of Self Method
(Chapter 1, pp 1)
What is it like not to have a Natural Sense of Self? The question is hard to pose, let alone to answer. How is it possible to experience the lack of something you do not know exists in the first place? In the Preface of my book The Motivation Cure, (as a 1st edition called: Healthy Sense of Self -How to be true to your Self and make your world a better place!) I extensively described how I found out that I was lacking something other people seemed to have.
Let me give you an example of a situation that helped me to see a small light that was going to grow and become a beacon in the jungle of darkness.
“Please don’t be mad at me,” I kept begging my husband every time I yelled at him to vent my annoyance when I was unable to fall asleep. “In reality I am not angry at you, but I am angry at the fact that I don’t sleep. I can’t keep myself from getting upset and I need to let it out.”
He understood, and so we went on like that for many years. However, at some point he said, “I do not quite understand you. Are you not the one in control of this anger? You either choose to or choose not to be angry. Then, if you do, you choose how to express yourself.” I simply could not find within myself any power, force, or will that was capable of such choosing or not choosing. Based on this and other similar conclusions I deduced that he must have something inside that I did not have. So I started to pay attention and look more closely into this.
A Brief Summary of the SoS Method
This Method presents a new and integrated approach to the understanding of an important part of the human condition, and offers potential improvements. My point of departure is that body, mind, and emotions are continuously in communication with each other during all developmental and maturational phases, which then results in the way each person is whatever he or she is in the world right now.
Here is what I believe. Each of us is born with certain qualities and characteristics of who we are when our potential is optimally manifested in life. It is crucial that a person live under conditions that enable this process to take place. In other words, if there are few obstacles to your developing a healthy mind and body, then your life circumstances allow you to live up to your potential. What happens though, if there are too many obstacles? What happens to your potential when your development, is blocked or distorted by certain life circumstances (which seem to be the rule rather than the exception)?
I always felt I could have been so much more successful in doing what I have done, if I hadn’t been forced to look within to find what was off with me, and how to change into a person who has her act together. Perhaps, I would not have chosen to become a professional musician at all and would have found great satisfaction as a psychologist.
I would have had, possibly, a lot of people who wanted to be my friend because I had something to offer instead of being needy and fearing rejection.
The Importance of a SoS
(Chapter 1, pp 5)
The SoS Method maintains that:
- the development of a Natural Sense of Self is a core aspect of healthy, normal psychological maturation.
- the maturation of Sense of Self is subject to either healthy or unhealthy development based on behavior of the primary caregiver toward the child.
- a lack of a Natural Sense of Self in a person leads automatically to dependency on a Substitute SoS for self-experience, which is one of the root causes of many aspects of human suffering.
To improve the human condition, it is crucial that all people learn to develop, strengthen or restore a Natural SoS in themselves as well as in their children.