Anxiety can both Protect and Overwhelm

 

Your heart is racing, chest is tightening and you have feelings of fear, apprehension or panic. Many of us will recognize these symptoms and immediately think of times when we’ve felt them. These symptoms are part of our bodies’ normal reaction to situations we perceive as dangerous, unsafe or stressful (known as the fight or flight response), but today we can label the combination of these symptoms in daily life as anxiety.

All of us experience anxiety at some point in our lives, usually in response to stressful or overwhelming situations. But how do we categorize a “normal” anxious response? How do we know if our anxiety has gone on for too long without treatment? What are the warning signs that anxiety is interfering with our day-to-day lives?

Common anxiety symptoms

Anxiety manifests physically, emotionally, and through behavioural and cognitive patterns. You may recognize that you are having an anxious response to a situation when you experience a combination of these symptoms:

  • Increased/racing heart rate
  • Tightening chest/shallow breathing
  • Stomach upset
  • Headache
  • Sore muscles
  • Inability to concentrate/loss of focus
  • Worry
  • Apprehension
  • Fear
  • Panic
  • Withdrawing from family, friends, society (avoidance)
  • Fast-talking
  • Obsessive thoughts; creating “what if” situations
  • Scanning for anxiety/threats

Helpful anxiety

Anxiety can be described as a full emotional and physical response that can occur before or after a stressful situation. Although the physical and emotional experience of anxiety can be distressing, anxiety is helpful to us when it is triggered to alert us of real threats or danger. When we perceive a real threat or stressor, anxiety motivates us to take action to deal with the threat or stressor appropriately. For example, we may feel some anxiety before a job interview or an examination, but the feeling of anxiety should motivate us to prepare adequately in advance (that is, take action).

Disordered anxiety

There are many areas of the brain involved in processing the symptoms of anxiety. Disordered responses to anxiety can occur when the brain processes too many or too little of these symptoms. Sometimes the wrong parts of the brain become involved in processing the symptoms. Some manifestations of disordered anxiety patterns in the brain include:

  • an overly intense perception of anxiety – the brain’s response to a stressor does not match the real threat
  • an overworked brain due to an accumulation of past stressful memories – in response the brain generalizes fear and worry to present and future situations
  • a generalization of threatening and non-threatening situations – the brain cannot judge which is which in real life.

The likelihood of developing disordered anxiety is dependent on both biological and environmental factors. For example, research shows that anxiety is sometimes inherited from our parents (biology). As children, we may see anxious behaviours modelled by our parents, or grow up in a stressful environment which leads us to over-develop anxious responses. Exposure to a traumatic event can also be a precursor to disordered anxiety.

There are many presentations of disordered anxiety, including generalized anxiety (excessive, uncontrollable, non-specific worry), panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), phobias, social anxiety and post-traumatic stress.

Treating anxiety

There are several approaches to treating anxiety and its symptoms. The most common treatment method recommended to sufferers by experts is cognitive behavioural therapy. Transpersonal Psychotherapists aim to identify and treat the source of anxiety, and may recommend some lifestyle modifications to treat symptoms.

First and foremost, experts have noted that healing can most easily take place in a healthy body. Therefore, it is important to take care of your body through good nutrition, regular exercise and good quality sleep. Other lifestyle modifications to manage symptoms can include:

  • becoming aware of and practicing regulatory breathing
  • practicing rhythmic movement such as walking, dancing, swaying, jumping rope or stretching
  • limiting stimuli and practicing relaxation or being still
  • mindfulness training – staying connected to the present moment.

Getting to the root of anxiety

It’s helpful for sufferers to learn techniques to manage the symptoms of anxiety but ultimately sufferers will receive respite when they connect to the reason(s) they experience disordered anxiety. Therapeutic approaches that are Integrative, drawing on a variety of therapies are helpful in getting to the root. Ultimately, sufferers will need to re-train their brain to prevent disordered anxious responses from happening in the first place. Anxiety sufferers are encouraged to regain community connection, expand/build their social skills, and work with their therapist to develop plans for confronting situations that provoke an anxious response.

When to reach out for help

Anxiety management is one of the most common reason people work with therapists. As many as 1 in 4 Canadians will experience anxiety and require assistance to manage it. How can you tell when it’s time to reach out for help to manage your anxiety?

  • Your anxiety is disrupting your normal eating, sleeping, working, educational and relationship patterns
  • You can no longer exercise (due to fear of provoking an anxiety attack)
  • You have symptoms of anxiety and have a diagnosed or undiagnosed mood disorder
  • You start to notice a pattern to your anxiety and/or emotional responses
  • Your anxiety symptoms are repetitive, are escalating, and have persisted regularly for longer than 6 months
  • Your anxious responses are not proportionate to the actual stressfulness of a situation
  • You have experienced a traumatic event
  • You abuse substances
  • You have a family history of disordered anxiety
  • You feel alienated from others and struggle to understand social interaction
  • Dealing with your anxiety has become another stressor in and of itself

To find out more about therapeutic approaches to challenging anxiety with Lorena Colarusso Registered Psychotherapist, send a message through our contact page and request a free 30 minute telephone discovery session.  Lorena incorporates an Integrative approach drawing on Psychodynamic, Transpersonal, Somatic and Energetic, Attachment, Developmental and Relationship therapies.

Copywriting by Belle Boutique Marketing

References:

Crisis & Trauma Resource Institute https://ca.ctrinstitute.com/

Risk Factors, Symptoms and Ways to Manage Anxiety http://www.goodtherapy.org/blog/risk-factors-symptoms-ways-to-manage-anxiety-0317164

Anxiety http://www.goodtherapy.org/learn-about-therapy/issues/anxiety

Anxiety http://www.harleytherapy.co.uk/anxiety-counselling-london.htm

The Return Journey

 

By Lorena Colarusso RP

We shall not cease from exploration. And the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time”. T. S. Eliot

We never separate from our connection to Being.  Being, another word for our Spiritual or Transpersonal connections.  Our interpersonal and primary bonding and connection can be interrupted in our human development.  Our family soul and environmental experiences can create trauma wounds which affect our human psycho-physiological development. It is part of the imperfect human interpersonal journey.

We are wired for interconnection with all creation. However, the part of our brain that contains this capacity for human interpersonal connection develops after we are born.  Spiritual Bypass can be defined as an attempt to regain connection by going directly the source container of Being while missing the critical need of strengthening and developing our innate physiological capacity for connection.

Our vulnerability as human beings at birth is our complete dependency on our environment. Our environment includes our family, ancestors, soul and all contexts of the environment.   All we have at birth is our profound connection to source, to the cosmos we just left, still fully activated within us as we enter the earth. While indeed we are affected by any possible lack of nourishment in our environments, we are also wired to continue our journey back to reconnection.

Originally psychotherapy developed as a pathway to understanding and labelling our wounds with a focus on the origin.  Transpersonal and Integrative approaches draw on new understandings of the brain, spirit, body and mind.  Our consciousness is holographic which means that a corrective, healing, nourishing experience at any point on our personal timeline spreads its healing impact throughout our entire consciousness.  This supports the Family Soul Constellations approach that healing within the family systems is also holographic, affecting the entire system.

Mindful, present day relationships and experiences are are important healing opportunities as part of our Return Journey to the Authentic Self. Mindful can be described as an organic allowing of the psyche and spirit to bring forth what is ready for transformation.  The more aggressive direct regression into the past can be unsafe in some ways.  Moving between the present resources, spiritual resources and bringing those with us into past wounds is now supported with new knowledge as more effective corrective and healing experiences wich minimises the risk of retraumatization from direct regression.

The Return Journey as a dance with all the containers within our human field and spiritual fields. It as a path of embodiment, bringing the spiritual connection to our Human Self.  Through this type of integration, we can access our full potential and manifest it.  We can be present with deep intimacy and connection in relationships. We owe this public knowledge of bonding interruption and how it affects us primarily to  John Bowlby, A Secure Base (1980). Many have contributed since then bringing scientific and educational validation.  The wholeness that we seek reconnect with is psychological, interpersonal, developmental and spiritual.  Some of the clues that tell us we can use transpersonal psychotherapy support:

  • Discomfort with the relational Relational connection makes us uncomfortable, and so we disconnect and withdraw.  Discomfort with connection does not mean that we don’t want to connect, we are all wired innately for connection.  It is just uncomfortable for us because we may have learned that to connect causes pain and so we adapted by withdrawing.
  • Anxious attachment in our relational connection. When we connect, we find it difficult to disconnect.  We are anxious and attach quickly.  Anxious attachment doesn’t mean that we don’t want to be able to come back into our autonomy.  It is just fearful because we can’t trust that we won’t’ be abandoned or rejected and so we adapted by hanging on.
  • Confusion with attachment and disconnection. This is a normal adaption to a confusing environment and often results from experiences of abuse in the environment.  Our inner selves move in and out of connection and disconnection as a reaction to the incongruency and unpredictability of our environment.
  • Numbness with our emotions. Often when we cut off from painful emotions, we also cut off from joy.  Emotional disconnection can cause emotional dysregulation.  Repressed emotions can break through and become reactive in present day situations.  We can experience flooding of numbed and suppressed, even repressed emotions.
  • A sense of non-reality and dissociation. When we have experienced traumas, a normal adaption is that we dissociate as protection from overwhelming pain and emotion.  Unresolved, this can show up in relationships as being aloof, not present even arrogance.
  • Projection of Fear into Relational Connection. When we have unresolved interruptions in our interpersonal connective field and are possibly frozen in trauma responses, we may project unresolved fear onto relationships and experiences.

The Return Journey moves us back into secure attachment, authentic trust based on reality and spiritual trust based on divine connection.  Transpersonal approaches focus on mindful, present moment experiences which create a holographic transformation of consciousness.  Lorena is passionate about the integration of mind and spirit, human consciousness and spiritual connection in our Return Journey.  Lorena recently received certificates of completion in Somatic Attachment training with Diane Poole Heller, Ph.D.  She was a member of the Therapy Mastermind Circle which included 92 hours of teaching, case counsel, expert interviews for over a year. To find out about more about Lorena’s transpersonal and integrative psychotherapy approach, click here.

The Colours of Trust

Lorena Colarusso Registered Psychotherapist

What does it mean to trust?  To trust is a verb.  It is something that we do and have done to us.  Trust is a result of actions, behaviours, beliefs, feelings sustained over time.  It has many colours.  We can trust others in some dimensions and not trust in others.   The colours of trust can flow and change over time.  Trust remains the foundation of love and bonding in nourishing relationships.

In many of our relationships, primary trust and loyalties lie with others, not us.  We are not, in reality, the primary trust bond.  The important thing is to be aware of where you stand and if the type of bond you want is possible. Ask, what colour of trust is authentic in this relationship?  A primal trust imprinted in the red root chakra is a complex trust bond, both psychological and biological.  It contains our earliest imprints and memories about safety, trust and bonding. Primal Trust is one of our most powerful trust bonds in whatever way it developed.   Often, this is the root of imbalance with mistrust and blind trust.  It is the source of our essential style of bonding and capacity for trust.

The gift of trust is that it can be learned and developed. Even with a betrayal of trust, it is possible to rebuild over time.  With each relationship, we learn about our capacity for trust and when we are in a blind trust or in fear of trust.  The mystery of trust is that we can only trust others and the world as much we trust ourselves.

There are levels of trust, colours of trust.   What is important is our clarity and shedding light on our distortions, denials, projections and idealisations when making decisions about trust.  This lack of clarity can work both ways. Being aware allows us to become conscious of our patterns and wounds that distort trust. We can connect in a blind trust, denying the behaviours and feelings that inform us about a true lack of safety to trust.  Just the opposite, at times, trust is merited and proven over time, yet we can be unable to perceive this.

The Colours of Trust are rainbow colours.  There is the orange sacral chakra flow of intimate trust.  When it is balanced in its giving and receiving building, it builds interpersonal effectiveness.  There is the solar golden glow of self-trust which builds self-esteem or ego-strength empowering us with confidence and mental health.

For some, trust emanates in a heart based green flame of love, personal love and holds a balanced emission of self-love and love for others.  Any imbalance in this flow inward or outward can block our ability to trust.

A betrayal of trust can be painful, and we can slip into mistrust of ourselves, our perceptions and judgement. Through self-compassion, trust can become a map to authentic personal growth and interpersonal effectiveness in relationships.

Through the psycho-emotional and spiritual development with these beginning colours of trust, we can move into the blue, indigo and violet shades.    These shades connect to the throat chakra blue flow of authentic words and expression building integrity and congruence.  Congruence results from an alignment between or outer expression and our inner beliefs, values and selves.    This third indigo eye ability to see with insight and without judgement is the basis of clarity when making decisions about what is trustworthy and what is not.

Finally, infused into all the colours of trust is the violent and white light of a higher vision and interconnection.  Bringing compassion into our decisions and balancing it with our reality-based perceptions.

We are all unique in our capacity to flow in trust with all these colours.  For most of us in our human journey, we have natural imbalances in the flow.   What is most important is that we have awareness. This awareness develops stronger as we evolve our sense of Self.

Transpersonal Psychotherapy is a pathway of balancing and clearing blocks to trust in your personal journey or your intimate relationships with family or others.  It can build inner resources to make a decision from a compassionate and discerning trust. It can build a stronger sense of Self which develops from self-awareness and self-trust.  If you would like to explore this more feel free to check my website www.lorenacolarusso.com on the types of services that are available.  Or simply contact me at lorenacolarussorp@gmail.com.  I am passionate about the soul inspired lives that authentic trust and clarity can create.

Gratitude for Inspiration

by Lorena Colarusso RP

As I leave behind four decades of commitment to mental, emotional and spiritual health, I am most grateful for the Courage to act on and move with inspiration. I reflect on the forests, paths, creeks and rivers of my career, leading me at times in so many directions.  There was a decade where I was a Director in Non-Profit Organisations while owning a part time private wellness and psychotherapy practice.  Such parallel careers for some would seem unfathomable, and yet for me, it was seamless fueled by courage, passion and inspiration. And others who might see the continuous movement as fragmented commitments, closing of chapters and beginning new ones as a sign of instability.  In fact, it was just the opposite, the inner strength of courage to be moved and act upon inspiration.  The flexibility to manifest with creativity.

Without Courage, genius lays dormant, dreams unfulfilled and our soul potential a seed without bloom.  Without Courage, education and talent can be underutilised in the manifestation of life.  I ask myself was it inspiration and divine connections that moved through me to create such a full career.  Was it my intuitive ability to hear spirit, to align with my soul purpose?  I believe that it was more about courage.  The courage to decide and act.

To truly live with Courage, its opposite, Fear must be embraced.  As both a Coach and a Psychotherapist I value differing approaches to embracing and working with fear.  Coaches see building Courage by expanding our comfort zones.  When we move through fear, courageously our comfort zones expand building our confidence, competence and self-esteem.  Even our self-identity is formed by the limits we choose and by the contrast of our values and beliefs versus those of others.   Coaches work with embracing the Fear of the unknown, fear of failure or success and more.  A key focus is the beliefs and values that maintain the operating fields of our fears in our mind and energy.

Psychotherapists approach Fear from its roots in our instinctual and biological makeup.  Fear is the natural way that human beings have ensured their survival as a species.  Being hyper vigilant to the ancient dangers of physical survival is still embedded in our brain and nervous system. To understand that we are wired with this survival anxiety allows us to breathe into our normal humanity.  Psychotherapists help you understand the fear you need and the fear that haunts you from your past.  Therapy can help you see how past unresolved fear and trauma can disconnect you from the present and stops you from creating the future you want. Through therapy you can learn to embrace this innate fear instead of resisting it, suppressing or denying it.  Often debilitating fear and anxiety can be a product of trauma that is linked to a frozen inner part of us stuck in a particular place and time.  Psychotherapy can facilitate the healing of these parts stuck in past fears, and provide corrective experiences to bring them forth into present time.  The truth is that as we resist our fear, we also resist our inspiration and creativity.  They are intimately connected.

Courage is not the same as fearlessness.  Fearlessness can be disconnected from reality based obstacles, challenges, events and people where caution is indeed needed. We need to allow ourselves to embrace and have protective fear.   Fear can also operate from many unresolved past core issues that can continue to block our courage no matter how educated, intelligent, talented or skilled we are.

Of all the growth on my psycho-spiritual path, I am most grateful for the Courage to listen to inspiration in spite of my fears and to allow it to move me into action. I am grateful for the power of psychotherapy in transforming the haunting fears of my childhood and teaching me about instinctive and healthy fear.  I believe that each time I allowed myself to be inspired, to change direction; my relationship with the source of inspiration grew in trust.  It required risk, courage and a detachment from the opinion of others.

More and more I am interested and curious about my relationship with inspiration or rather how inspiration comes to me.   I pray for the Courage to stay open and act with decisiveness when inspiration presents itself to my mind and spirit.  I pray for divine inspiration to not leave me, to keep visiting me in future chapters of life.  I honour it with my commitment to manifest, to be worthy of it and gratitude for the passion it brings into my life.

If you would like to find out more about how to work with your fears both past and present, contact Lorena.

Systemic Family Constellations

FAMILY SOUL CONSTELLATIONS

Children seldom or never dare to live a happier or more fulfilling life than their parents. Unconsciously they remain loyal to unspoken family traditions that work invisibly [within them]. Family Constellations are a way of discovering underlying family bonds and forces that have been carried unconsciously over several generations.” – Bertold Ulsamer  

Family Constellations Facilitation is a psycho-spiritual body of work developed by Bert Hellinger, described as one of the most respected and innovative therapist in the world today.

The Systemic Family Constellations theory developed by Hellinger after years of observation and constellations work, suggests that there is an inter-generational transference of beliefs, behaviours, energies and traumas that are unconscious, emotional, psychological as well as physical. These inherited characteristics and energies can be the invisible root of disturbances and imbalances in an individual’s life that can sabotage health and well-being.

 

Family Constellations Process

Family Constellations can be be facilitated in both group and individual formats. This system and soul family approach often address potential roots of issues such as physical illness, addiction, infertility, anxiety, anger, depression, loneliness, unhappy relationships, failure and self-destructive behaviours.

  • Group or Individual Sessions

Family Constellations can be done through a group experience or can be individually facilitated.  The same principles of group family constellations are incorporated into individual facilitation.

  • Pathways of Exploration

Following are pathways of exploration through which Family Constellations Individual Facilitation seeks to resolve the effect of these unconscious inheritances. Working with these approaches can increase awareness of how our lives and relationships are influenced and can bring a greater understanding of the previously unconscious impact of this legacy:

  • Family/ Parental Psychological Bonding
  • Loyalty Bonds
  • Emotional Burdens
  • Family Relationships and Entanglements
  • Family Roles and Dynamics
  • Inherited Belief Systems
  • Alliance with Same Sex Parent
  • Alliance with Opposite Sex Parent
  • Rejection of Parents
  • Exclusion and loss of family members
  • Balance in Giving and Receiving
  • Orders of Love and Birth Order
  • Identification with family members
  • Men’s Roles and Women’s Roles
  • Masculine and Feminine Energies: Ancestral Lineage of women and men
  • Ancestral Empowerment & Honouring
  • Qualities of Soul:  Inclusiveness, Truth, Allowing, Honouring, Compassion, Clarity, Discernment
  • Gift of Freedom

Family Constellations Key Elements

  • Orders of Love

Through decades of Family Constellations work with thousands of family systems, Hellinger rediscovered the importance of the ancient, archetypal “Orders of Love”.  These forces are described in Family Constellations theory as being embedded in the collective unconsciousness or soul of families.  Any disturbances or damage to the “Orders of Love” in the ancestral lineage are transferred inter-generational to current and even future, unborn family members.

Family Constellations work facilitates a re connection of these “Orders of Love” and an understanding of the impact that ancestral influences have on individual lives.

  • The Family Harmony and Exchange of Energy

In all family systems events have occurred that disturb the balance and harmony of the family.

Another key aspect of the system is the flow of giving and receiving, a primal need for balance and equity that incorporates all systems family, society and more.

  • Enmeshment and Triangulation Bonds

A key issue in Family Constellations is the enmeshment of children in the emotions, traumas and issues of their parents and other family members.  Often, through this enmeshment, children energetically take on others’ emotions as their own which limits their freedom to reach their potential.

 

Key Events Impacting Generations

Through Family Constellations theory, events that are perceived to have a profound inter-generational imprint on family members, ancestral, present and future include:

  • An early death of parents or grandparents
  • Tragic accidents where a member of the family has died
  • Perpetrators of violence enacted in past generations
  • Victims of violence from past generations
  • Unresolved grief or loss from past generations
  • Divorce
  • Miscarriages, Stillbirths, Abortions, Death of a Child
  • A member of the family forced into the role of “Black Sheep”
  • War
  • Events that impact a culture, race or ethnic group such as slavery or acts of violence and genocide
  • Adoptions
  • A mother who dies during childbirth

The Family Constellations process can produce healing shifts in either a group family constellation or individually with a Facilitator.

Transformational shifts can occur through moments of insight that bring into conscious awareness the bonds, influences, loyalties and connections to ancestral suffering and trauma. From that understanding, it is possible to re-shape and engage life with vigor and joy.

 

To find out more about Individual Family Constellations Facilitation with Lorena Colarusso RP, feel free to leave a message, question or book a session on our Contact page.

Transpersonal Psychotherapy

Lorena Colarusso RP

By definition, psychotherapy often deals with deeper emotional, psychological and cognitive issues and trauma.  Transpersonal or Spiritual Psychotherapy goes beyond ordinary consciousness, acknowledging the miracle of the soul, mystical experiences and multi-dimensional awareness in therapy.

Transpersonal Therapy is a client-centred process that includes a psycho-spiritual approach to healing. It works with the whole human being in an integrated process that acknowledges the intimate connection between body, mind, spirit and heart. It uses those pathways to assist clients to bring greater perspective and balance into their lives.

Dealing with the challenges of life and learning how to live fully is an essential art that can be developed. The tools that are gathered through the Transpersonal path, when combined with awareness and action, have the potential to support personal capability and deeper understanding of life events.

Transpersonal Therapy assists clients to change and transform and invites them to take an honest look at their lives from a multi-level perspective. This broader view has the potential to:

  • uncover the patterns of behaviour and the themes in experience that can represent a soul message of life purpose
  • develop an ongoing awareness and deeper understanding of those experiences
  • promote ultimate transformation that walks a path of capability and well-being

In a safe and compassionate environment, Transpersonal Psychotherapy seeks to bring awareness to emotional and psychological blocks such as fear, inner conflict, feeling stuck, failure and the desire for complete control. It can create an attitude of trust and surrender to life’s experiences knowing there is inner capability to meet any challenges that surface. From that vantage point, experiences offer gifts that can encourage greater perspective and strengthen one’s resilience.

Transpersonal psychotherapy encourages clients to take informed responsibility for the experiences of their lives and develop higher understanding and awareness of those experiences as their life path. As this pattern of consciousness is accepted, the client has the potential to develop an acceptance of their inner guidance system as a resource for decision-making and focused action. This new life view provides a foundation for healing and the development of a healthy sense of well-being and capability in life.

Mind – Body – Spirit  Approach

In a safe and non-judgmental environment, techniques are facilitated which supports clients in identifying their issues, overcome the obstacles that these issues present and recover a balanced, aware and capable perspective in their lives.

In Transpersonal Therapy, the psychotherapist facilitates a ‘mind, body and spirit’ approach to healing and inner transformation and supports the client’s experience using such techniques as:

  • Focusing exercises and empathic listening
  • Meditation and Guided Imagery
  • Systemic Family Constellations
  • Perceptual Expansion and Limiting Belief Change
  • Inner Selves Voice Dialogue and facilitation
  • Inner child work that accesses both the inner child and adult
  • Relationship Dynamics and Attachment
  • Energetic therapeutic techniques such as chakra psychotherapy
  • Shamanic Energetic Therapy
  • Managing the inner critic
  • Emotional Healing
  • Expanding connection to Wise Self or Divine Self

Manifesting in alignment with Authentic Self and Higher Purpose

Transpersonal Therapy – Process

This process includes both emotional healing and experiential work and employs concepts from transpersonal and transformational psychotherapy.

Identify -> Observe -> Understand -> Accept ->             Gain Awareness -> Transform

While Transpersonal Counsellors and Therapists work on an intuitive and energetic level with clients, there is also a stepped process to its Mind-Body-Spirit approach that is focused on assisting clients to embrace their well-being.

The Therapist supports the client to :

  • Identify core issues
  • Uncover their unhealthy coping mechanisms and defense
  • Deal with emotions, trauma and the grieving process
  • Uncover their family-of-origin issues and understand their family systems and see their effects on their beliefs values and behaviours
  • Explore and support healing for the inner child and encapsulated inner children
  • Learn how to set personal boundaries
  • Discover attachment style and move into secure attachment
  • Strengthen character development
  • Balance inner polarizations and emotional reactivity
  • Understand impulsivity and gain self-regulating skills
  • Create the ability to build self-esteem and recognize their self-worth
  • Develop tools and skills to navigate the challenges and understand the dynamics of relationships
  • Work with key psycho-spiritual issues and blocks
  • Embrace their unique aspects of self and sub-personalities
  • Create inner balance and inner alignment
  • Understand how unresolved family of origin issues show up in relationships
  • Learn about their disowned selves and how this affects their life and relationships
  • Develop a connection to their Higher Self, Intuition and Cosmic Consciousness

Because it recognizes that life occurs on a multi-dimensional level, Transpersonal Psychotherapy offers the possibility for the development of emotional and spiritual maturity in those who seek self-knowledge and self-awareness through its methods. This can ultimately lead the client to realize their greater sense of place in the world and assist them in establishing deeper meaning in their lives.

Feel free to Contact   Lorena for any further questions or inquiry or to book a free discovery session.

Inner Balance Anima and Animus

Inner Balance Mastery Tools

By Lorena Colarusso Registered Psychotherapist

The masculine is sovereignty, the crown upon your soul. Femininity is humility and unconditional love, the heart within the breast of your soul and together they make the whole soul essence.” St. Germain, Twin Souls and Soulmates

We all possess the polarities of masculine and feminine essence within us. Integrating our inner masculine and feminine selves is the foundation of our wholeness. Rooted in Jungian psychology, this concept of the inner masculine and feminine is described as the“anima and animus”. It describes the male as having an inherent inner feminine and the female, an inner masculine.

Another description for these forces of nature is Yang and Yin. Yang energy being masculine is often described as light, the sun, fire, directed, focused, logical, protective and action-oriented. The Yin, which is feminine, encompasses descriptors such as the moon, intuitive, receptive, vague, diffuse, emotional, dark.

Psychologically, men are described as predominantly yang with aspects of yin energy while women are mostly considered as possessing more yin energy with aspects of yang. Each person contains the inner seeds of potential for wholeness and integration of both yin and yang.

The individual opportunities for inner self-integration of these opposites can present itself in men as they expand and embrace their emotions, their vulnerability and their capacity for connection. For women, the integration focuses on their capability for decisiveness, being action oriented, having inner strength, being independent and displaying personal power.

Integrating our Inner Masculine or Feminine is a very important pathway to accessing our full potential. Too much or too little of either can block our ability to manifest, achieve in the world and experience emotional balance.

Try this Exercise:

Take some time to review the list below and follow the instructions to uncover your unique Masculine/Feminine Balance:

What is the current balance of the masculine and feminine energies in your life and what needs further development?   Which of these aspects of the Masculine or Feminine are polarized in you?  Which are disowned or denied?

Masculine Feminine
Aggressive Passive
Independent Interdependent
Rational Emotional
Objective Subjective
Dominant Submissive
Competitive Cooperative
Logical Intuitive
Adventurous Cautious
Decisive Ambivalent
Ambitious Security Oriented
Worldly Domestic
Leader Follower
Assertive Tactful
Analytical Integrative
Strong Tender
Sexual Sensual
Philosophical Practical
Thinking Feeling
Good in Math Good in the Arts
Good in Science Good in Literature
Self-reliant Consults others
Individualistic Interpersonal
Goal oriented Process oriented
Exclusive Inclusive
Instrumental Expressive
Disciplinarian Nurturing
Pleases self Pleases others
Takes initiative Receptive
Likes time alone Likes time with others
Sees parts Sees whole
 Rebellious Conformist
Theological Religious
Separative Affliative

Balancing Brain Hemispheres:

To help you more clearly understand the masculine and feminine within you, consider that your brain is designed to accommodate these polarities. The functions of the left and right hemispheres of your brain correlate to the masculine and feminine respectively.

The left brain output is more closely affiliated with the masculine qualities of logic, being detailed oriented, being more concerned with factual data and having the capacity for words and language, math and science. It operates in the present and past. It comprehends, knows, acknowledges, orders and can perceive patterns. It names objects, is reality-based, practical, focuses on safety and has the proclivity to be strategic.

The right brain function is oriented to the imagination, creativity, symbols and images. It uses feeling and is oriented to the present and future. It believes, appreciates, knows object functions, understands meaning, is philosophical and spiritual, is fantasy based, impetuous, explores present possibilities and takes risks.

Neuroplasticity is the Gift that allows us to integrate our Feminine and Masculine qualities.

From the field of neuroscience, writers such as Norman Doidge, M.D., explain the revolutionary phenomenon of neuroplasticity. The brain’s capacity for regeneration, transformation, performance and healing. The holistic techniques include a brain, mind, body and energetic approach. The brain is impacted by forms of energy, light, sound, vibration and movement that have been described as capable of awakening the plasticity of the brain’s own transformative capacity.

In the above exercise, how well-balanced between the Anima and Animus did you find yourself to be?

Is there some integration or balancing you would like to explore?

Lorena Colarusso RP at Alchemy Holistic Counselling offers a host of options to help you achieve your desired integration of your feminine/masculine energies. Lorena is available to support you to balance your life to honour both the left and right brain activities and to assist you in exploring a full reconnection to Source and to your Soul.

Sources

The Brain’s Way of Healing, Norman Doidge, M.D.

He: Understanding Masculine Psychology, Robert A. Johnson

She: Understanding Feminine Psychology, Robert A. Johnson

We: Understanding the Psychology of Romantic Love, Robert A. Johnson

The Quest for Maleness, Theun Mares

Unveil the Mysteries of the Female, Theun Mares

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