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The Enchanted Self - Thats Each of Us!

In my years as a psychologist, I have come to believe that most people seeking psychotherapy are unhappy. This is not only due to earlier hurts and traumas, as well as present frustrations and problems, but because they cannot access earlier happy moments often enough. The unfortunate result is not being able to experience enough positive states of well-being. It is these unique states of well being that I have come to label THE ENCHANTED SELF.

Many scientists of human behavior recognize that we do not yet, and perhaps never can, fully understand human nature. I have become more and more convinced that we do not. What interests me, is that we do not fully understand some people, who have apparently fortunate lives but experience little joy, while others, apparently less fortunate, experience great joy. Perhaps we have tried too hard to understand pathology in our science of psychology, and have not tried hard enough to recognize and understand what I call ego-states, or happiness.

When I first began to analyze the data from the women I interviewed, I kept trying to understand how their enchanted adult lives evolved from the childhoods they talked about. I found that although there seemed to be some clear connections, many others were not clear at all.

The capacities of these women to reclaim positive aspects of their childhood, while discarding the dysfunction that was often also present, was astounding to me. It seemed as if a magic wand had been tapped on the women's heads in their adult lives.

For example, when Edith talked about her childhood, she at first remembered only its dysfunctional aspects: the fighting between her parents and their constant criticality. I suggested that we go back and look again at her childhood to identify times when, in spite of the pain of family life, she felt excited about her own life and about herself. With this encouragement, she could separate out positive memories of herself from dysfunctional family experiences. She started remembering some wonderful times: delightful family picnics, fishing with her grandfather, and more.

An activity you can do to start on the positive road of Enchantment:

What are some golden moments in your childhood when you felt particularly happy? These moments can be from any age, from your earliest memories through early adulthood. When you find a golden memory, enjoy it. See yourself at that age and experiment with letting different senses reconnect to that happy time. Can you remember the way your body felt? Can you remember what activity you were engaged in? Were there any aromas? What was the weather like? How did things look around you? What did your

mood feel like? Take time to really enjoy this happy memory of yourself.

I wish you a joyful journey. I hope that your life feels whole and that you find your past, whether beautiful or painful, a repertoire of talents and capabilities is that are uniquely yours. I hope that your talents, capacities and potential will give you a sense of well being as they thrust you into the world in meaningful ways.

About The Author

Dr. Barbara Becker Holstein , originator of THE ENCHANTED SELF?, a method of bringing delight and meaning into everyday living, invites you to view her new line of ENCHANTED WOMAN products, downloadable e-books, and free gifts at http://www.enchantedself.com. Chat with others in Dr. Holstein's e-group, http://groups.yahoo.com/group/encself/join, and sign up for her free e-group at www.enchantedself.com. Order her book, THE ENCHANTED SELF: A Positive Therapy, or the CD-rom or tape version and her book RECIPES FOR ENCHANTMENT: The Secret Ingredient is YOU!, or the ED-rom version, at her website.

enchantedself@verizon.net

In The News:

A shocking video shows a great white shark proudly carrying around its latest victim — a dolphin — when suddenly an even bigger great white swoops in to steal the meal straight from its mouth.
A North Carolina couple taking a walk on Wrightsville Beach in North Carolina on Tuesday came across a rare, prehistoric find: a megalodon tooth.
A host of historic artifacts, including a lock of Napoleon’s hair, will be up for auction in the U.K. on Saturday.
Scientists at MIT have discovered a galaxy cluster that they say is “hiding in plain sight.”
The megalodon, which went extinct millions of years ago, was the largest shark ever documented and one of the largest fish on record. The scientific name, Carcharocles megalodon, means "giant tooth." And for good reason: Its massive teeth give scientists major clues about what the creature was like and when it died off.
It sounded too good to be true.
He was probably in his 20s and died nearly 6,000 years ago in Egypt.
Scientists are seeking a solution to the red tide crisis that that has been devastating marine life on Florida’s Gulf Coast.
In a blog post, NASA said that it may never again have contact with the Opportunity rover, after the craft got caught up in a Martian dust storm in the middle of June.
The remains of a 99-million-year old beetle have been discovered, perfectly preserved in amber, fossilized resin that originates from the bark of a tree. It is believed to be the world's oldest insect pollinator and the amber provides a fascinating look at how life was nearly 100 million years ago.

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