If you are looking for personal growth, we recommend creating conscious, committed intimate relationships. Personal growth happens naturally when partners work cooperatively to help each other heal the wounds they brought to the relationship from their family of origin. Our approach to personal growth emphasizes “inner work,” because each person ultimately must look inward in order to grow personally.
Self-Reflection and Self-Correction
The inner journey of personal growth involves learning skills in self-reflection and self-correction. It requires looking at:
- your codependent and counter-dependent behaviors;
- learning how to resolve your relationship conflicts;
- working cooperatively to break your patterns of addiction, dysfunction and victim consciousness;
- healing your developmental traumas;
- changing your twisted beliefs;
- and protecting yourself from con artists.
Tools From Our LOVE–atory
Our many “LOVE-atory-tested” tools are designed to support your personal growth, health and self-reflection. Our books are full of these tools. We’ve found self-improvement to be a lifetime venture, and say to people who ask, “You’ll know you are done when they throw dirt in your face.”
Personal growth is like eating an elephant: one bite at a time and don’t bite off more than you can chew. Another bit of advice is “Start as early in life as possible.” Our problems and issues don’t get better with age, and the longer you wait to address them, the longer it takes to clear them.
When you become aware that some aspect of your mental, physical, emotional and spiritual “bodies” are crying out for attention in some way, act quickly to address the problem or issue.
How Long Will It Take?
People who come for therapy usually ask us, “How long will this take?” We usually say it will take about one month for every year that you have had the problem. So if you are 48 when you decide to seriously work on freeing yourself from any twisted beliefs, healing your developmental traumas, changing your family patterns, stopping your co-dependent behaviors, etc. it will take about 48 months to consider yourself past that hurdle.
It is possible, however, to speed up this process by:
- asking your partner or closest friend for support
- read books & attend workshops on your issue,
- devote time to working alone on your personal problem,
- join a support group that focuses on that personal issue.
Healing Relational Wounds
Based on our own experiences, we believe that the best place to get support is in your intimate relationships. This is true because most of your wounding happened in the intimate relationships with your parents, siblings or other adults when you were a child. So committed adult relationships are a great place to heal these wounds.
How Healing Happens
We’ve discovered that modifying your relational template and the early childhood wounding in it requires being aware of two things. First, is understanding what you should have gotten as a child that you needed, and what you got that you didn’t need. Few people know what an optimal model of parenting looks like, so they often blame themselves for their problems, or make excuses for harmful parenting practices.
Once you understand what you missed in your development and are able to give back (for-give) the harmful things that you didn’t need, you can really heal. The second thing you need to understand is how your family-of- origin experiences have contributed to your present-day problems and issues. We can’t emphasize enough how important it is to connect the dots between past trauma and present-day problems.
Our books are additional resources to support your personal growth. We recommend the following books:
- Breaking Family Patterns: How To Identify Your Family Patterns
- Breaking Family Patterns: How To Change Your Family Patterns
- The Flight From Intimacy
- Breaking Free ofThe Codependency Trap