The humanist psychotherapist Carl Rogers spoke of the ideas of Self-Image and Ideal Self. This Self-Image, sometimes referred to as the Perceived Self, is the way we perceive ourselves to be. The Ideal Self is the image we have of how we would like to be. Living in True Self means consciously choosing to be your Ideal Self as much as possible.
True Self is this Ideal Self. It is who we would choose to be if we were living up to our own highest expectations of ourselves. The ultimate goal of Mindfulness-Based Ecotherapy is to be able to live fully in True Self.
It would help to have an outline of what this True Self looks like for you. As the saying goes, “If you don’t know where you’re going, any road will get you there.” Identifying what your own True Self looks like is the first step in creating a road map to get there.
To create this outline of your own True Self, answer the questions below. Your answers are creating an autobiography of how you’d like to be. This autobiography is the substance of your True Self. It may help to write your answers down for future reference.
- What do you care about?
- What gives your life passion and meaning?
- How is emotional aggression related to the things you care about?
- What are you trying to accomplish by acting in emotionally aggressive ways?
- Could emotional aggression cause you to lose the things you care about? How?
- What are some positive alternatives to acting in emotionally aggressive ways? Be specific.
- How would these different ways of believing and behaving create a more compassionate and positive reality in your life?
- Suppose you could change yourself so that you never again had to act in emotionally aggressive ways. What would be different about you?
Save your answers to these questions for future reference, as we’ll be talking about your True Self ‘road map’ again in future posts.