Early in our lives we develop limiting beliefs about ourselves, and habitual ways of being and relating with others. We do this to conform, adjust and make the best of the childhood & family circumstances in which we find ourselves.
We carry into maturity these beliefs and habits. As a result, we conduct ourselves in ways which can restrict the opportunities for happiness and fulfilment present in our lives and also our ability to respond effectively to the different challenges adult life presents to us.
There are many ways this can happen, here are just a few examples: -
If our parents were not available to give us the love and care we needed, we may carry into adulthood a limited expectation of support from others and so, practice a self-sufficiency which restricts the amount of love and care we allow into our lives now.
If we were subject to humiliation and shaming as a child, we may as adults experience enduring & intense feelings of self-loathing, which we try to extinguish by focusing upon progression and achievement of one kind or another. Having attained material success, such feelings can continue to torment us, if we have not addressed the root causes of our discontent & suffering.
Those of us subject to terror and abuse in childhood are likely to carry the effects of such trauma into our adult lives, and continue to apply defensive and avoidant ways of being and so miss out on much of what life & those close to us now offer.
When tragedy strikes a family, the effects upon children of current and following generations can be profound & serious. As adults, they may experience feelings such as guilt, low self-esteem and ambivalence about life, because of an unconscious identification & entanglement with the fate of other family members.
Personal crises brought about by issues such as Bereavement, Relationship Problems, and Difficulties at work can precipitate our decision to enter therapy: -
If we have not been able to resolve such an issue it may be because ’unfinished business’ from earlier in our lives needs attention. This may be limiting our access to innate potential to respond appropriately or effectively to certain types of challenge.
Following a bereavement or trauma we may benefit from receiving professional & compassionate support through the healing process from a trained psychotherapist and counsellor.
Where an issue is profoundly affecting the well-being of a relationship, couples counselling can be helpful.
In these sessions we explore how the behaviour, beliefs, history and identity of each partner impacts upon the other, with the objective of increased mutual understanding.
Frequently ‘unfinished business’ from within each partner’s childhood & family of origin obscures and distorts their perception of the other.
Whilst couples counselling can help a relationship, it is also often a powerful and direct path to increased self-understanding.