I, for one, love all things CSI. Criminal Minds is my favorite; just can't get enough of the characters and the stories. I wonder why I have such a driving need for acting these murderous scenarios out? Well, it is once again dawning on me that it is a fulfillment of some "disowned" parts of myself, and this is bringing to my awareness a wonderful book I read long ago by Debbie Ford called "The Dark Side of the Light Chasers".
I had already read numerous books and articles by psychologists, not least of which was Carl Jung, the great 20th Century psychologist and student of Sigmund Freud, whose signature work was the study of the archetypal and mythical figures of ancient Mesopotamia, Greece, India and Rome. His important contribution to the workings of the psyche included a depth of understanding about how we "project" our shadow, those sub-personalities that live inside of us that we cannot accept, and how it is invaluable to reach inside to get to know and to heal those parts of ourselves.
Debbie Ford took that knowledge and created workshops for people to greet these unmet, unknown, but definitely real aspects of themselves so that instead of the negative aspects ruling them and making them extremely unhappy, to decide to "meet and greet" them and look for the gift they bring.
Let's say I know a person who triggers me. He has what I would judge as arrogance in the way he interacts with people. I hate being around this person, and am easily annoyed. If, instead of continually being harrassed mentally by his presence, I look inside myself and say to myself "What part of this behavior is something I also do? Where in my life am I also arrogant?", I would have the beginnings of a connection to my inner self that carries a charge about this behavior. In other words, a part of me is also arrogant.
Now the next step is vital. It is the "owning" of the behavior as something I also possess. I must greet Arrogant Alice (go ahead and give her a name, it's much more fun that way!) and ask two things of her:
1) What is the gift you bring to me? (Remember, this will be a difficult question to answer because it is a disowned part of yourself, so you have to have a lot of patience and really allow your intuition to lead you to the answer).
My answer might be "I really want people to realize how important what I am saying is for them and for the world. It matters so much that I am able to share my knowledge and wisdom and I feel that it might even avert a calamity for them, so I really need to be able to speak".
2) The second question to ask this disowned part of you is, "What do you need to be whole?". My answer for that might be "I need to share the truth as I know it because only then will I feel heard and know that I have helped others be safe".
Well. This puts a whole different slant on "arrogance". There is a gift and a promise that comes with this behavior that the person showing the behavior may not be aware of in themselves, and because I am triggered by the behavior, ( in other words because there is a charge for ME when I am around that kind of person), there might be a sub-personality in me that needs some love and attention. As I give this love, or at least find some understanding for the reasons behind the behavior, it loses the charge. It loses the intensity of my reaction. And this "disowned" part of myself gets to find some peace.
Go ahead now and do this process for yourself. I found some really interesting sub-personalities in myself, and gave them each a name! Here are a few: Domineering Diedre, Bitchy Betty, Texas Tom, Bigeted Bob (now that was a hard one to own!!), Fearing Fannie. Each of these sub-personalities has both a gift to bring you, and an avenue for you to find wholeness within yourself. I encourage you to really take this exercise seriously. Debbie Ford recommends that you sit quietly and after a few deep cleansing breaths in and out, imagine yourself on a crowded bus with lots of people on it. Allow one at a time to come to you, and ask them who they are, and what is the gift they bring for you. Then ask them what they need to be whole.
I know this exercise will help to restore balance and wholeness in your life. It is well worth the time you take to do. I hope you have a great experience doing the exercise, and I would love to hear some of your responses, so feel free to leave a comment here or to private message me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Till next time!