During the first Gateway of the Zodiac Wheel (April) I met the author of ‘Your Zodiac Soul‘ John Wadsworth in a cafe in Glastonbury. He randomly asked my friend if she would take a photograph of both him and his friend and they held up a book. I noticed the book title and I was intrigued so asked if one of them had written the book. John replied that he had; it was 14 years worth of his work and he had managed to capture it into his first book and was embarking on a UK book tour to promote it. Naturally, I bought a signed copy of the book as did my friend. I was not expecting such an experiential and fascinating book, a book that explains the wheel of life, from birth to death to rebirth, rather than the linear idea of birth to death.
According to Eric Berne’s and his Transactional Analysis (TA) Theory we have 3 parts of us: Parent, Adult and Child Ego State and all have thoughts, feelings and behaviours to help identify which is at the forefront and in charge. We switch between ego states but often can find we are in a certain one most of the time. We may find it changes depending on who we are with.
In basic Transactional Analysis we have 3 ego states: Parent, Adult and Child, three different parts of us. I have noticed that some people find it difficult to get into their adult ego state, which is about being fully present in the moment, only interested in the here and now. A guided meditation or yoga class seems to hard to fit in a chaotic week. What came to mind was a Buddhist ceremony around a cup of tea that I had read in my 20s.
As trainee counsellors, we have been told ‘Counsellors without self awareness are limited in their ability to operate with any degree of honesty or integrity with clients‘. Therefore before working with clients, most training providers require that their trainee counsellors have at least 40 hours of personal therapy. And so it was during my 40 hours of personal counselling and beyond that I practically learnt how to identify my innate emotions of anger, sadness, fear and joy. That may sound a little bit strange, how do you not know what emotion you are feeling?
Almost a year ago my niece whom I had fostered for five years, looked up at the window that I was looking out of, as she ran away for the third and final time. Social services, as I knew they would, ended our placement without so much as a disruption meeting.
This poem came to mind recently as I left Dorset for pastures new in Glastonbury. This time the part of the poem that jumped out was the bit about betrayals – have I been opened by them? I am not shrivelled or closed, my heart is still open to people, but was I opened by those betrayals? What does that mean?
Creative writing can be a useful tool for personal growth and development. I recently attended such a workshop with Sue Ashby included as part of my counselling training. We were challenged to write ‘free-flow’ for 6 minutes, even if we repeated the same word until other words came to mind. We started the exercise with the word ‘If’.