If we search the world’s best authorities, you’ll discover one common message.
When you don’t know who you really are, it wounds. It hurts.
I’ve known of a 30-year-old client, Meryl, who felt antipathy for men. She had a string of lesbian relationships since her high school.
Yet at the same time, she expressed wishes of being “normal.” Not knowing why, Meryl would behave rudely towards men and continue to pursue women.
She told me in-session: “How irrational of me! I’m beginning to hate you too doc!”
Such experiences are orchestrated by one’s “secret self.” Something is hidden, unknown.
Dr. Carl Jung speaks of “shadow” when referring to the unknown, hidden self. It includes all your unwanted, negative aspects of your personality and values.
These aspects of the “shadow” then orchestrate much of what you think, say, feel, and do. They’re a part of you which keeps pulling the strings.
What’s more, you do this to your self outside your awareness.
Ignoring parts of your self (quite common among the dysfunctional) that you hate or pretend they’re not there, is akin to ignoring a wound. Things can get worst.
By the same token, if you’re denying or overlooking your good parts and qualities, you miss hidden treasures within you. That can benefit your life.
Knowing who you are is comprised of bringing more of your hidden self into the light. That gives you oppportunity to redeem parts of you that have been walled off.
Until you see it, you can’t heal.