Have you ever felt the tireless inkling inside that there is more to you? Are you feeling stuck or dissatisfied with your current life and feel you might have something more to offer to the world and yourself? Perhaps something new is trying to emerge for you, but you do not know yet what that is and how to approach it?
You might be baffled to fathom that therapy and human potential go hand in hand. After all, therapy might appear as a space where you can bring the issues that are bothersome and hope for some sort of resolution, insight, alleviation of what is troubling you at the time. It can also be true that therapy is not the first thing that might pop into your mind when you are struck by a new dilemma, difficulty or need to develop a new skill.
However, therapy is much more multidimensional as a process than many people believe. It is not only a place where you can share your emotions, thoughts and experiences. It is a vast but intimate microcosm between you and your therapist that brings forth your personal life, events that formed who you are, a vast array of emotions that you never thought existed. All is welcomed.
You might be asking how then this might be related to human potential or more so, my own potential?
First of all, when I think of potential I think of who may I possibly become or what can I develop within myself. Therefore, potential for me is directly related to self-development. Therapy is one of the ways in which you can develop yourself from within. Here’s how.
– You get to know the person who participates in life – you. The Ancient Greek aphorism “Know thyself” calls us to self-introspection and knowledge. “Who am I” is a timeless question asked by millions of people, and in the therapy space you can come very close to it by sharing and reflecting on your emotions, thoughts, actions, life experiences. It might be a rocky road, but knowing yourself is an invaluable investment and a major step towards coming closer to your potential.
– You start noticing the patterns and relational dynamics present in your life story. Whenever you go deeper into knowing yourself you gain perspective and can therefore look at your life differently. You can see your past and what effect it had on you, how it made you You, what patterns of behavior or relating you see in yourself. Acknowledging the usual ways of being can be tough, but often we cannot fool ourselves into living the same way for long enough when the truth had been recognised and deeply felt.
– When your self-awareness gets sharper you can then identify what stops you from being where you want to be and move closer to who you want to be. Perhaps you will see you need to develop a specific skill, or summon more will and take up that course you have been avoiding so that you can move forward.
– Therapy offers a chance to work through unaddressed emotional issues that might get in the way of you moving forward in your life. Whether it is a loss, trauma, or a pattern you are stuck in, there is a very real possibility for you to work through it with your therapist. It can as a result free up a lot of energy that had been invested in old and (un)comfortable ways of living, so that it can be reinvested in a new direction.
– In therapy you are supported throughout the process and transitions so that you stay on the path of self-knowledge, self-compassion and willful approach to who you want to be.
That all might sound too good to be true, but therapy is an environment where this is possible. Of course, as for everything, the process requires motivation and dedication. However, the reward is greater self-knowledge and greater self-mastery over previous feelings of helplessness. Another side effect of therapy is that you do start seeing more choice available to you where previously there seemed to be none. As the great psychologist Abraham Maslow said: “What a man can be, he must be”. And therapy is one of the ways you can come closer to choosing exactly that.