Tool 2 – Laying the foundations for healing
The foundations for healing and an essential first step to any healing journey is to offer yourself some loving-kindness throughout the process. I imagine we could all be a little kinder and more loving to ourselves? I think awareness of the foundations for healing is something we need to remember regularly!
If you work through any task I share and for travelling through life in general, it is essential to make sure you support and care for yourself fully and respectfully and with loving-kindness! These are essential foundations for healing. It is important to remember these foundations for healing and remind yourself regularly to practise giving loving-kindness in all your thoughts and actions.
I am going to share here three core conditions which are the foundations for healing (courtesy of Carl Rogers)
- Genuineness – Allow what is ‘real’ for you to emerge.
This is not the time to project what anyone else may think or feel about you onto your experience; it is time to just explore and let the different aspects of self, come to the surface. Who knows what treasures you may uncover?
- Warmth and compassion – Be aware and curious.
Accept any thoughts that present with an open mind. Let go of the need to pass judgement or make sense of every thought you think. Just be aware. There is no need to explain your
thoughts, sensations, or feelings. Just allow whatever presents to ‘be’. Give them space. Imagine everything as something new you are learning about yourself. Let everything be.
- Positive regard – Regard everything you become aware of positively.
There is nothing good or bad and no need to judge or criticise yourself. These energetic aspects are just as they are. Stay curious and accept them. A little love, kindness and compassion for self goes a long way.
Foundations for healing summary:
As you uncover and discover different aspects of yourself:
- Be curious, accepting and show warmth, empathy, and love for every aspect of self that presents.
- Be your own ‘best friend’.
- Regard every aspect of self with compassion and let go of any judgement.
- Be patient with yourself and your progress.
- Treat yourself like you would treat someone you love!
Crystal tip: A crystal that I find wonderful for supporting self-compassion and love is rose quartz. It has a soft, gentle, nurturing, and soothing energy. You could carry or wear a piece close to your heart as a reminder for self-compassion (one of the foundations for healing).
Tool 3 – Bibliotherapy – my top ten books.
Bibliotherapy is reading and the use of books (specifically, self-help style books) as a form of therapy.
As I said previously, I find inspiration from words. I have read so many books that have been so useful at various points in my life, for an uplift, a reminder, a boost etc. So, trying to select my top 10 favourite books, was a real challenge. What I know for sure is that I am truly grateful to all the writers for taking their time to share their wisdom and knowledge. Thank you!
I have selected and am sharing these books for now, but there are many more that I have read and found useful – so I will share some others later!
- Susan Jeffers – Feel the Fear and Do it Anyway.
- Clarissa Pinkola Estes, C (1992) Women Who Run with The Wolves.
- Dan Millman – Way of the Peaceful Warrior (and all other books in the series)
- Dan Millman – No Ordinary Moments
- Louise Hay – You Can Heal your Life.
- Rhonda Byrne – The Magic.
- Richard Carlson – Stop thinking, Start living.
- Oriah Mountain Dreamer – The Invitation.
- Claude Steiner – Achieving Emotional Literacy.
- Norman Vincent Peale – The Power of Positive Thinking.
I would highly recommend any of these. Maybe just choose the title that sings to you?
Tool 4 – Keep a personal journal
Writing a journal is an excellent method for ‘getting to know’ how you think and feel at specific times. It is also a great way of letting go of stuff ‘better out than in, as it were’. If you choose to work through some of the activities I share, you may find it useful to keep a journal.
A journal can be used to make notes of a specific experience; it can also be used to express thoughts and feelings or record messages received during dreams and meditation or oracle cards.
Again, it is essential not to judge or try to interpret and analyse every single word, thought, dream or vision, just let it all be! It is an unfolding story. Stay curious and imagine everything as something that just needs to be seen, heard, expressed, released, and accepted at that moment in time.
Getting started with your journal:
- To start your journal, buy a special notebook. Use the journal to write your thoughts, dreams, experiences, draw pictures, create poems; just record everything that feels significant for you. Write or draw as often as you can.
- Choose a time and place when you will not be disturbed. You could experiment with writing in different places, e.g. the park, on a beach, in your garden, in a café or even in a quiet space or room at home.
- Let the journal be a personal expression of your thoughts, feelings, fantasies, and dreams. It is up to you if you share this with anyone else. If you find your inner judge or critic prevents you from writing freely, focus on those critical messages and maybe write about them too. These may help you to see where blocks are, and much learning or movement can be experienced as a result.
- Don’t try to organise or structure your writing – if it seems chaotic or confusing accept this as part of how you’re experiencing your inner and outer world right now. Similarly, do not try to edit or correct spellings or punctuation, just write as it flows in its raw uncensored way from your creative self.
- Sometimes, there can be a tendency to focus just on non-progressive and non-helpful experiences. So, remember to write about the progressive, helpful and uplifting experiences and feelings too. Much learning, growth and release can occur when we give ourselves permission to experience joy.
Tool 5 – Where am in now?
A good starting point may be to explore where you are now.
How would you describe the current life you have created? What work are you doing? How are your relationships with others? What resources and support systems do you have? Where is your home? How contented are you with the world you have created?
- Use your journal to describe every aspect of your life – your family, friends and relationships, including the relationship you have with yourself. Describe how you spend your time each day, from the time you wake up, till the time you go to bed.
- Once you have written your description, read it back through. Notice how you feel about different aspects of your life and add these thoughts to your journal.
- You could grade your satisfaction with different aspects of life using a 0-10 scale. (0 = dissatisfied and not content and 10 = highly satisfied and content).
If any self-scolding or blaming presents, be aware of that, without letting it take over. Just be curious. Maybe, write a little more in your journal to explore the scolding and blaming aspects if they present. Notice who you may be blaming; is it yourself or is it others? Again, no judgement, just be aware! Notice if there are many things you may like to adjust and make changes to. NB: In a later blog i share a wheel of life tool, so you may want to revisit this part of your journal then.
Tool 6 – Make a wish list
Imagine that you have a magic wand or a magical genie who would grant all your wishes and make them come true. What would you wish for? How would you dream for your life to be?
- Write a list of everything you would like to have in your life – all your wishes. This is not the time to ‘hold back’, put all the wishes out there. Be creative and magical. Highlight your top three wishes.
Tool 7 – Give thanks – the gratitude list
One of the most wonderful gifts we can give ourselves is the gift of being thankful for everything we have and all that we are right now. The more thanks we give, the more we have.
We can often take so much for granted, yet many of the things we have in life are privileges, e.g., having clean water to drink, food to eat; a warm home to offer shelter. Take time to notice everything that you already have in your life and give thanks. Being thankful is also a wonderful way to shift the mind’s focus from negative or non-progressive thoughts that may be spiraling the self into a low mood.
- Write a list of everything you have in your life that you are grateful for and thankful to have in your life. Keep doing this! Make it a daily practise or habit.
- Give thanks for all your blessings every morning and/or every evening.
- Say ‘Thank you’ for everything in your life that you value.
- Remember – practice makes permanent.
Crystal tip: At bedtime, I hold a rose quartz heart and I give thanks for everything that I am grateful for (e.g. life, breath, health, the people I love, my home etc). Sometimes i forget and sometimes my mind wanders back to the dramas, but giving thanks and being grateful, really does make a difference.