“When there is no way out, there is still always a way through. So don’t turn away from the pain. Face it. Feel it fully. Feel it — don’t think about it! Express it if necessary, but don’t create a script in your mind around it. Give all your attention to the feeling, not to the person, event, or situation that seems to have caused it. Don’t let the mind use the pain to create a victim identity for yourself out of it. Feeling sorry for yourself and telling others your story will keep you stuck in suffering. Since it is impossible to get away from the feeling, the only possibility of change is to move into it; otherwise, nothing will shift. So give your complete attention to what you feel, and refrain from mentally labeling it. As you go into the feeling, be intensely alert. At first, it may seem like a dark and terrifying place, and when the urge to turn away from it comes, observe it but don’t act on it. Keep putting your attention on the pain, keep feeling the grief, the fear, the dread, the loneliness, whatever it is. Stay alert, stay present — present with your whole Being, with every cell of your body. As you do so, you are bringing a light into this darkness. This is the flame of your consciousness.” Eckhart Tolle
In advocating the self-discovery model for understanding ourselves and others, I know that the Changemaker Test can be used to develop groups of persons interested in learning about themselves. Oftentimes information about personality traits only happen when someone goes to therapy.
Professional therapy is needed in instances of suicide, strong feelings of self-hatred, feelings of being alienated from others, feelings of worthlessness, people say that you worry too much, overly uncomfortable in social situations or having had recent crisis that isn’t getting better.
Tom Russ wrote the following questions to ask yourself to consider if you need therapy.
Should You Be in Therapy?
From Tom Rusk
Answer frequently, once in a while, or never to the following:
1. You have trouble getting out of bed in the morning?
2. You want to sleep all the time.
3. You have been thinking of suicide.
4. Nothing seems interesting.
5. You are no longer attracted to your partner, and you don’t know why.
6. Little things upset you more than they should.
7. You can’t find a job doing what you want to do.
8. You keep getting into fights with friends and breaking off friendships.
9. You can’t make up your mind about important things.
10. You’ve had a series of accidents or minor illnesses.
11. You go on buying sprees, getting things you don’t need.
12. Your allergies are getting worse.
13. You can’t sleep at night.
14. You’re eating (drinking, smoking, fighting, etc.) more than is good for you.
15. You burst into tears without knowing why.
16. You are afraid to be alone.
17. You find it hard to make new friends.
You should strongly consider therapy if you answered “once in a while” for ten or more of the above, or “frequently” for three or more.