17 Sep The Energy of Self
by, Dr. Deborah Diamond D.C.
Did you ever notice that we don’t seem to be composed of one “self”?
Have you ever had trouble making a decision because you had “mixed feelings” or were “not of one mind” about a particular issue? Did you ever have “conflicting thoughts” about a topic?
There have been many Psychological theories and philosophies that describe this phenomenon, that we have different “parts” living within us.
These parts seem to have different purposes in our lives. Some protect us from danger, some help us get our work done and stay organized, some distract us from painful emotions or memories by prompting us to engage in some addictive or obsessive behavior or craving.
One Psychological construct related to these principles was elaborated on by Richard C. Schwartz, PhD who created the “Internal Family Systems Model” where one is guided to connect with and get to know one’s parts. This is done with the hope of relieving some of them of their “jobs” which are burdensome and may keep us stuck in dysfunctional behaviors or perspectives.
These parts all have unique and characteristic thought and behavior patterns, but also postural and muscle tension patterns and may be connected with different physical symptom patterns.
This is one of the concepts that make our job so interesting. Helping a person to resolve musculoskeletal pain is therefore often more complex than it appears on the surface, because it may involve not just helping a muscle to relax or a joint to regain freedom but a “part” of us relaxing and releasing its beliefs and protective patterning. It involves real change on an internal and personal level. This is the nature of real healing; internal change that cannot be forced from the outside.
One of the most interesting parts of this theory as described by Schwartz is the concept of the “Self” as he describes in his book “No Bad Parts”
In the midst of these disparate parts that lead to so many of our internal struggles there is a Self with a capitol S. This is our central or “True Self”, the one with the inborn wisdom and perspective to understand and heal the other parts and offer us guidance for our highest good.
Schwartz describes this “Self” as having “Self-Energy” and offering “Self-Leadership”. When we are able to access our “Self” we tend to experience what he describes as the 8 Cs:
This list caught out attention because these are the very qualities our patients experience during adjustments and then over time more and more in their lives.
It seems that when the body relaxes and the Nervous System moves into a more balanced state this allows us to connect with our “Self-Energy” and then embody that True Self more and more.
This is the intersection of physical and psychological health as our central Self emerges into a leadership position for both our body and mind.
So, we feel our work has the healing effects it does, in part because it offers a way, through touch, to experience the energy and essence of your true nature or the Self that is at the core of your being, and this is the part of you that heals you.
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