Understanding is the key to all healing

Understanding is the key to all healing

Understanding is the key to all healing

In this week’s Success Newsletter, I would like to reveal the significance of understanding as a key to healing.

First a quick update:

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Now, let’s talk about the significance of understanding as a key to healing.

Recently, I was sharing with a client one of my core teachings: The key to all healing is Understanding.

The early definition of the word ‘healing’ referred to making something whole again. Today, the word is defined as ‘the process of the restoration of health to an unbalanced, diseased or damaged organism.’

Thus, we can say that healing is about restoring something to its original and healthy state.

In psychological terms, healing is the restoration of our original, healthy mental and emotional states. Simply put, our original state is emotional freedom: prior to negative programming and traumatic experiences, we believed in ourselves and in possibility; we focused more on curiosity and potential and less on fear and hiding. We deliberately set out to freely express ourselves and make connections with people rather than running from people or using masks. We breathed with passion for our dreams.

So what is Understanding?

Understanding can be defined as the ability to perceive the intended meaning of something; the ability to perceive the significance, explanation, or cause of something. In psychology, understanding refers to “the procedure of attaining knowledge about oneself or other people or of understanding the meaning or significance of something, like a term, idea, argument, or occurrence.”

Thus, the path to attaining mental and emotional wholeness once more comes from understanding.

Understanding what?

Yourself and everyone around you; most of all, understanding the people who contributed to your programming or instigated your traumatic experiences; understanding how and why you made interpretations and conclusions (most of them false) about your  parents, other people and the cause of those traumatic experiences. (Note here that the use of the word trauma is not limited to physical abuse or injury; it includes emotional, psychological, cognitive trauma. Witnessing a parent being ‘abusive’ to another person can be traumatic for a child.)

Thus, the goal of “Understanding” is to make new correct conclusions and interpretations of yourself, other people and past events so that you can achieve emotional freedom and be restored to an original whole and healthy state.

Real understanding comes from being able to look at and analyze the details and the full picture. The philosopher Hans-Georg Gadamer explained in his book “Truth and Method” (1960) the way people come to understand texts. Gadamer makes the point that you can’t fully understand the meaning and intention of a text solely by reading the individual sentences; you must read the whole text to understand the context of those sentences. Further, he argues that there is another level of understanding, a dynamic play between the author and the reader. One affects the other and thus a conclusion is formed.

The same applies to understanding ourselves and everything and everyone around us.

As noted above, most of our present understanding of ourselves and the world around us is based on false conclusions and inaccurate interpretations.

How did we form our own guilt, shame, self-blame, self-loathing? How did we form our own anger, resentment and blame? How did we conclude that we are bad, unworthy, unlovable or that there is something innately wrong with us? How did we lose our dreams?

Via the conclusions and interpretations we made of our parents actions towards us and the conclusions and interpretations we made about everything we experienced.

Those false conclusions and interpretations are those of a child. Children are naturally egocentric and believe the world and the universe not only revolve around them, but rather, that the world and universe are directly affected and created by them.

In other words, children blame themselves for the actions or inactions of their parents; abuse victims blame themselves for being abused.

How do we achieve real Understanding so that we can make correct or at least more beneficial conclusions and interpretations of events and people?

Here are 3 simple steps:

What – List your beliefs
What is the emotion or belief you would like to change?

Become aware of your emotions – anger, fear, self-doubt, etc. Write them all down. Every emotion is attached to, results in or was formed with a belief. List the beliefs attached or associated with each corresponding emotion. You can start with the belief if you prefer.

How – List their origins
How was this belief and/or emotion formed?

List the origins of the belief and the emotion: an event, an action or something that someone said. Whatever it is, it inevitably involves a second person – mom, dad, sibling, stranger, etc. List that other person – aka the Instigator.

Why? – Formulate a new picture
Why did this person do (or not do) what they did?

You already have an image of the Instigator and now you will formulate a new full picture of this person incorporating the details.

We take the limited information we have about someone and we complete it into an image. The information we had is always limited, incomplete and often tainted by our own filters and limitations i.e. a child makes conclusions about a parent’s actions based on a child’s brain and a child’s mind and a child’s experiences – all of these are limited and thus lead to incorrect conclusions.

Write down everything you know about this person; write out what you know about their childhood and what they experienced. Write out how they formed their beliefs, sayings, actions and emotions. What happened to them that resulted in them being who they are?

It is true, that by doing this exercise, you will most likely arrive to a place of compassion for the Instigator. However, at the very least, you will have the awakening that “It’s not your fault.”

When using these steps as part of my process with a client who was sexually molested by a stranger, she was able to come to the subconscious conclusion and understanding that he was suffering from a mental disorder and that it was never her fault; she isn’t to blame and she did nothing wrong.

Only with full understanding (including acceptance) can you have the awakening that you are okay, there is nothing wrong with you, and you are free to live life to its fullest.

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I wish you the best and remind you “Believe in yourself -You deserve the best!”

Patrick Wanis Ph.D.
Celebrity Life Coach, Human Behavior & Relationship Expert & SRTT Therapist

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