We live in interesting times. Covid 19, climate change and the extinction of species, political unrest, terrorism run riot, wars, economic struggles, and more. Especially now more than ever, even with the breakthrough of new covid vaccines - a welcome hope and relief, and new policies to try and secure a greener society, it can still seem incredibly difficult, perhaps even delusional, to have a secure future.
Of course there is nothing wrong with plans and aspirations. The need to pursue career paths that we find meaningful and purposeful is indeed part of sociological and psychological health, especially when they come from inspiration. And we do need to know that we can pay our bills and put food on the table. We also need to cultivate meaningful relationships, which are essential for a healthy society.
Safety and security are two fundamental needs, but from another angle, there does seem to be something delusional about trying to secure something that doesn't yet exist - the future. I have wondered if this is an unconscious fear of demise, an unconsciously driven attempt to try and ensure a continuity of existence in a realm that does not yet exist? Perhaps an insurance policy of some sort? Or, possibly the dawning of something meaningfully present and alive but not yet realised, and perceived to be somewhere in the future? But which can only be found in the only place and time we can ever exist - the here and now.
This can be confusing as our conditioned minds are not so accustomed to such a way of looking.
The founder of Psychosynthesis, Roberto Assagioli, believed that the source of psychological health is the connection with one's soul. If we are going to find mental and emotional stability in such uncertain times, we are going to have to be honest with ourselves about what part our own mind is playing, and the effect it is having on our sense of well being, behaviour and decision making.
When the mind slows down and especially when the planning mind stops, what is often experienced is a void of some kind. This is often uncomfortable and avoided, although some can experience it as peace. The good news is, that if we choose, our attention becomes available to the here and now where we can recognise our experience; what is it like to be alive right now? Commonly, when the planning mind stops, our sensing capacity begins to feel.
But feel what? Love, ecstasy, anger, rage, insecurity, grief, despair, instability/stability, inspiration, equilibrium, connection? At a time like this through a pandemic, with months of social distancing and for some isolation, so many are starving for connection, which is often the case in a driven society. I believe it's a law that we can only genuinely connect with others to the extent we can genuinely connect with ourselves.
Psychotherapy, mindfulness, anything that puts us in touch with our innermost feelings will inform us of what is most meaningful to us in our lives and what we want to do about it. Positive changes to create a better world for the future have come about by paying deep attention to the uncomfortable here and now experience that expresses an objection to what isn't right. I believe this is impossible without being in touch with our feelings - our felt experience of the here and now. At least while we are alive, it is arguably the only thing we can be sure of. To be disconnected from our feelings is to be disconnected from life, because life is a felt experience.
If you would like to know more about how I work visit http://putneycounsellingandpsychotherapy.co.uk/ or call 020 8780 9449. Or simply email email@example.com or use my contact page. Due to the pandemic, I am currently only offering telephone or video sessions via Zoom.