In the last two posts we’ve seen how in times of stress we turn to our subpersonalities to help us survive. These little ‘me’s have been absorbed into our sense of Self following traumas in our infancy.
One such subpersonality is the mirror reflection of our mother/father taken on board when we sensed their disapproval or withdrawal of unconditional love during the development of Self during our formative years. The more the withdrawal of unconditional love and it’s replacement by conditional acceptance then the more powerful the parental subpersonality.
A young child will do anything to have its parents approval and becoming like that parent is one such psychic tendency. In future years, dealing with our own young offspring under stress we tend to switch into this parental survival personality to bring some order to the whole child rearing mess. Hence the whole process is replicated and another young Self twisted by the entrance of the conditional Inner Parent.
How do we find release from the resulting tyrany of these hidden characters or subpersonalities?
Firstly let me suggest that the general soloution lies in the psychic integration of such little personalities within a renewed sense of Self.
How do we get to that inner place of wholeness and acceptance?
The initial step sounds simple but is often difficult for us to take, viz the observation of all the subpersonalities within us. In my own experience these subpersonalities are often more apparent to our spouse/partner or close friends.
Ask them to let you know when you ‘switch’ into another identity if only momentarily. My wife will spot my ‘survival dad’ coming upon me when I go sullenly quiet or passive to cope with pressure. Where did I learn this strategy for survival – yes, from my dad.
So over the next few weeks, try and identify particular parental or other types of survival personalities that you turn to in order to get you through times of stress or judgement by others.
Do not try and get rid of these miniture persons but try and identify their main trait and make a note of them. You might be surprised at how many you get through in the course of a week!
Remember we are not trying to judge, reject or do violence to your subpersonalities at this stage. Our first step towards wholeness is to become aware of them and jot them down in a journal or notebook. Note down too what seems to trigger their usually dramatic appearance.
We shall continue our strategy for dealing with these subconscious little ‘me’s next time.