Who observes? Who is the observer witnessing the parts? When any emotion or behaviour is named as a part, an observer to the part is created. As soon as you acknowledge, “A part of me feels distressed,” or, “There is a part of me who feels like relaxing now,” automatically, an observer in you is now witness and present to the feelings, concerns and experiences of these parts. This new presence changes the internal emotional landscape. Whereas before you may have only been aware of the concerns of one single part of you, such as an overwhelming, dominating feeling of distress, whenever you name, “There is a part of me who feels in distress,” at least two experiences are now occurring simultaneously: the feeling of distress, and an observer and witness to the distress, or to the part experiencing distress.
There is now greater choice available. The choices are: do I adhere to and accept the concerns this one particular part of me has, or is there another perspective to the situation the part is reacting to that is may be more relevant here?
This inner observer or inner witness is the Authentic Self. It is the part of ourselves that possesses the innate ability to be present both to ourselves as well as to others. We all have an Authentic Self. Personality parts within our emotional system have the tendency to cover over our Authentic Self and our ability to be present, and therefore the concerns, perspectives and experiences of our personality parts become the dominant and often most overwhelming experiences. This is the prime reason why we lose touch with the Authentic Self experience, and the ability to sustain a state of presence.
The Authentic Self is a highly significant resource in every aspect of life, one that will be constantly referred to and built upon throughout this book’s journey. However, the most important quality and trait of Authentic Self to be identified at this stage of the journey is the right of choice. In naming the part and consequently taking a step back from the part into Authentic Self we now have the choice to accept the part as being the sole experience, or not. We as Authentic Self may choose to disagree with a part and say ‘No’ to its perspective or concerns. Consequently, we may discover a far healthier and more appropriate way to handle the situation.
One of the key roles of Authentic Self, to be discussed in a later chapter, is that of the inner leader to our emotional family. It is ultimately the Authentic Self who has the power of choice and the ability to accept advice – or not. The Authentic Self is the true decision-maker.
The more able and willing you are able to be present to yourself and your present needs, the better able you are to be truly in command of your life and of the direction your life is taking, or the direction it needs to take.
Questions for Conversation:
How do you know when you are in your Authentic Self? What do you experience?
Are there times when parts cover over your Authentic Self experience?
Are there certain times, occasions, or situations when parts are more likely to take over?
What changes for you when they do become more dominant?
Tune in next Friday for excerpts from a brand new chapter from A Return to Consciousness!