A crucial part of my work as a psychologist, mentor and life coach is to assist individuals to discover who they really are and how to discover the totality of their potential. My approach is therefore not only to focus on current problematic situations, but also to make our work together with an exciting, happy journey of self – discovery; it is a process of co-creation between two equal partners.
On this journey, the question invariably arises whether the past, in other words, my prior life history, matters? The answer is an unequivocal “yes.” Each of us contains our entire lives in our subconscious minds. Everyone we were exposed to from birth and what we experienced impacted on how our thinking patterns about how the world is and how it should be, including ourselves, evolved and were shaped. In a continuous process these were – and continuously are arranged, embedded in our subconscious minds; either constructively or destructively.
Examples of these in my own life are the following destructive and untrue beliefs that my parents imprinted upon me and that I had to acknowledge, challenge and discard:
- What other people say is all important and has to be taken as the gospel truth.
- Never challenge authority figures and stick to societal norms at all costs. Do not rock the boat.
- You have broad shoulders.
- Do the following exercise:
Write down limiting and painful beliefs about yourself that your parents instilled in you.
To discover that these painful and limiting beliefs are not the truth can be a joyful and liberating experience. It is discovering rusted chains and balls around our ankles and getting rid of these. It is a process of reinventing ourselves and getting closer to who we were born to be. It has been the most awesome journey I have been on in my life and the greatest gift I have awarded myself. It lay the foundation for fulfilled and happy living and the key to a peaceful, calm and serene existence. The process is however never complete but it becomes more exciting and meaningful as one goes along.
The unexamined life is not worth living.