SELF AND PARTS

Directions: Which theorist originated each of the following definitions of the Self and personality parts: Roberto Assagioli (1927), Kate Cohen-Posey (2008), Michael Gazzaniga (1980s), Carl Jung (>1912), Andrew Newberg (2006), Richard Schwartz (1980s), Eckhart Tolle (1999), John & Helen Watkins (1970s), Ken Wilber (1980s)

Self
1. Self: Provides energy to create meaning, unity, and individuality and to help fulfill a person’s potential. It is the organizing principle of the mind: _________________ 2. Higher Self: A center of pure awareness and pure will capable of mastering, directing, and using the mind and body. It is both individual and transcends the personal self: _______________________ 3. Hidden Observer: An ego state that tends to be less emotional and wiser than other ego states and may give guidance regarding therapy: ___________________

Parts
Complex: An emotionally charged cluster of ideas with a core issue at its center that attracts similar life experiences. Subpersonality: Parts of the Self containing fragments of what we believe we are, what we want to be, how we think we should appear, and internalizations of significant others that exist in various degrees of organization and refinement. Ego state: Organization of behavior and experience into a (mental/behavioral) pattern that is separated from other states by a semi-permeable boundary.

4. Transpersonal Self: Emerges from a universal dimension and uses the personality to witness mental, emotional and physical experiences and provide guidance for growth: ________________ 5. Core or True Self: Both an inner compassionate, confident leader and an expansive, boundary-less state of mind, which has been and is always present in an individual: _____________________ 6. Consciousness: Essential being-ness or I- am presence that is aware, moment-to-moment, to witness, observe, and point out: ______________ 7. Selves: Mental processes (meta-cognitions or thoughts about thoughts) that observe, question, and dialogue with distressing inner voices to produce clarity, calmness, and empowerment: ______________________ 8. Thalamus: Regulates incoming sensory information and communicates a lucid sense of reality to the cortex during focused, calm states: ________________

Subpersonality: Subvocal voices in one’s inner dialogue that vie for attention and dominance. They vary in degree of detachment and need to control. Part: A discrete and autonomous mental system with emotions, expressions, abilities, desires, interests, talents, temperament, worldviews, and possible associated ages. Ego: Reoccurring thought forms and conditioned mental-emotional patterns invested with I-energy. Repetitive thoughts, emotions, and behavior reactions with which a person identifies. Part: Any sub vocal messages (thoughts) that create distress in their attempts to manage the details of life. Mental Modules: Independent locations in the brain where experiences are processed and stored as sensations and images. Verbal Self in the left brain “watches” sensations and images produced by other modules to make sense out of them by spinning a narrative.

Cognition: Abstract processes the brain uses to organize and make sense out of our perceptions. During trauma an imbalance may occur in the nervous system causing maladaptive information to be held in a disturbed state. How are cognitions similar to or different from personality parts?

Adapted from Empowering Dialogues Within, © Kate Cohen-Posey (John Wiley & Sons Inc. 2008)

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NEGATIVE COGNITIONS
Directions: Use memories of upsetting situations or persons to identify cutting comments that are triggered in your mind. Check any inner commentary that you “hear” in your worst moments: DIRECTING (SUPER EGO) VOICES
Controller Voice—Autonomy v. Shame & Doubt You cannot…. handle it, be trusted, stand it… You cannot …show emotions. speak up… You have to control things (yourself); you have to fix everything. Protector Voice----Initiative v. Guilt You’re not safe. You’re trapped. You cannot tell, speak up…. You might (will) fail, get hurt. You cannot make a fool of yourself. You might get sick, die, make others sick… You could do something awful. You cannot handle new, unfamiliar situations. You’re responsible for others, everything… You (your judgment) cannot be trusted. You cannot trust others. You are (will be) ruined, damaged… You have to be perfect; you cannot make mistakes. What if… what if… what if…? Pusher Voice—Industry v. Inferiority You have to…., You better…, You should… Have you done…, Have you done… You have to have what you want when you want it. You have to find excitement, a purpose, enough of what you want. You have to get it (done) NOW. Pleaser Voice—Identity v. Role confusion You have to please everyone. You (your needs) are not important; others come 1st. Others might not like how you sound, look, act… You can’t find love, caring, understanding, approval, attention… You could be abandoned; you’re empty, alone… You need others; you’re incomplete on your own… You have to make others love, understand, care for, approve of you…. Critic Voice--Introjections You’re worthless, defective, inadequate, a failure, disappointing, different, weak, dirty, at fault… You’re helpless, powerless, a fool… You don’t deserve love, happiness, to live… You’re not good, smart, attractive enough... You should have …. DISTRACTING VOICES—TRAITS Controller (blaming) Voice: They have no right to …; They shouldn’t be so …. Protector (perfectionist) Voice: They can’t be trusted; They can’t handle …. Pusher Voice: They have to…., better…, should…. Pleaser (clinger) Voice: They have to love, understand, be there for me… Critic (judger) Voice: They’re disappointing, foolish, failures, weak, dirty, at fault. Addict Voice: This will be the last time I’ll…. It won’t matter if I….

Distracting voices: The Controller, Protector, Pusher, Pleaser, and Critic can face outward and focus on others. Be alert to ruminations that contain the words He should…, She never…, They always…. Addict monologues have been added to the list above, because they avoid angst. Directions: Mark any familiar words of blame, judgment, and so on that target others.

Dis-identify: Identifying personality parts and ego states with names or images, or referring to negative personality parts in the 2nd person: “A part of you thinks…, You’re telling her she is not good enough.” This reinstates disturbing sub vocal voices as inner objects that can be faced and questioned.

Adapted from Empowering Dialogues Within, © Kate Cohen-Posey (John Wiley & Sons Inc. 2008)

Disassociate: Cutting ties with the Self and other inner voices by an ego state that forms solidified boundaries, resulting in a sense of not-me-ness. This causes disruption in awareness, memory (amnesia, blackouts), identity, or perceptions of the environment CASE STUDY A client named “Bess” has OCD and genital herpes. She had first become infected 7 years ago, but only had 3 outbreaks in the first 3 years after exposure. Her obsessions include finding and confessing to any man she had sex with (prior to marrying 3 years ago) that she could have given him herpes, worrying about all sorts of contamination, particularly when she uses bathrooms, washing her towels daily, etc. She is currently pregnant. Her therapist has helped her (1) identify the voice of an OCD personality part and (2) coach her core Self to make observations and ask questions:
OCD: You don’t deserve to pray with the people at your church. Self: Why doesn’t Bess deserve to be at church? [Q] OCD: Because she’ll spread her herpes to everyone. Self: You’ve been tormenting her for a long time; [N] you just have new material. (Bess remembers telling herself as a teenager she might give people AIDS for no logical reason). Why did you start on her in the first place? [Q] OCD: She thought she was perfect (seems surprised by the answer she hears from within). Self: How did you think tormenting would help? OCD: My role is to help her stay perfect by making sure she hasn’t hurt anyone or spread a disease. Self: Feels at peace—sees the vicious cycle of her circular reasoning.

Bess had 3 OCD free weeks until someone told her that women with Herpes could kill their babies while giving birth. OCD came back with a vengeance.
OCD: The whip cream you left in the frig you’re moving from has contaminated the entire house. Self: What’s the chance of that happening? [Q] OCD: Very likely. Self (spontaneously): You know it cannot happen—Herpes is spreads from skin-to-skin contact (Starts crying). Therapist: What inner voice are you hearing now? [I] Bess: I’m feeling stupid. I should know better. Therapist: An inner Critic is telling you, “You should know better.” [I] Ask it why it is scolding [N] and how does that helps? [Q] Self: Why are you scolding Bess? How does it help her? Critic: I’m keeping her in line so she can be perfect. Bess: It’s the perfect thing again (feels calm).

COMBINING DIALOGUE WITH EXPOSURE: Bess has excellent rapport with her therapist. Knowing this, her therapist says, “I think I have a sure fire way to cure you of your Herpies OCD, but if I tell you the plan, you may walk out of my office and never want to see me again.” Bess says she is game. Her therapist suggests that Bess go to the restroom, take a paper towel, touch it to her labia, come back in the office and touch it to her (the therapist’s arm). Bess looks like a deer caught in headlights. She admits she is terrified. She’s asked to focus on the part holding the fear.
Therapist: What is the OCD part saying to make your chest so tight? [I] Bess: It says I’d give you herpes for sure. Therapist: Ask OCD if anyone has ever had Herpes of the arm before. [Q]

Adapted from Empowering Dialogues Within, © Kate Cohen-Posey (John Wiley & Sons Inc. 2008)

Bess: (Starts laughing) The frightened part in my chest is calm. Therapist: What is it like to think about touching the towel to your labia and then to my arm now. Bess: It’s not a problem.

Steps to Dialogue—Inq.
A. Identify any distressing thoughts clients make about themselves or other people. 1. Rephrase first-person, I-statements (I should…, I’ll never…) into 2nd person you-statements (You should…, You’ll never…) to help clients dis-identify with thoughts. Third-person statements (They better…; She always…) are correct grammar for parts that target other people. 2. Identify the personality part that is voicing misguided messages: This increases awareness of what is happening internally. Any unnamed part that is ignored wields more power. Gradually their identities will become familiar: • Directors try to keep emotions in check, prevent problems, please others, and reach perfection. They are the controllers, protectors, pushers, people pleasers, and inner critics. • Distracting parts blame, boast, avoid, or cling to people? 3. (Optional) Represent personality part with (Tarot) image, objects, Winnie the Pooh characters, super hero toys, or emoticons, /:-[. The Scream by Edvard Munich can portray worried, OCD parts. 4. Ask clients if disturbing inner voices are their real selves? What do they call the ability to observe and question upsetting thoughts: logic, reason, or a quality from a Tarot card image—peaceful, graceful, carefree Self. (Optional) Represent the client’s real Self with an image, literary character, super hero, or, emoticons, 8-)}}. B. Help clients respond to misguided voices: narrate what the personality part is trying to do. 1. Are its intentions to predict, warn, doubt, scold, order, remind, convince, order, and so on? 2. Is it causing feelings of sadness, frustration, fear, hopelessness, helplessness, regret, guilt? 3. What are the consequences of its line of reasoning? (When you…, Bess feels…; Doing… could result in….) C. Formulate questions when it is unclear what the part is doing: 1. Clarify the meaning of vague messages—What is bad about…? What would it mean to …? What is the chance of …happening? 2. Clarify the origin of misinformation— When did … first get that idea? Where do you think that worry comes from? 3. Clarify the purpose of thoughts— Why are you bringing this up now? How do you think it helps… to…? What is the reason for…? Why … instead of …? What would happen if … did not…? Is there another part you’re holding back? Do you want the last word because you think you are being asked to give up your power or disappear? D. Have clients silently speak the words you’ve formulated by going INside to address an inner part. 1. Use 2nd person you-statements—You have been tormenting Bess for a long time. 2. Have clients refer to themselves in the 3rd person by using their name or the pronouns he or she—Why are you scolding Bess? How does it help her? 3. Have clients listen for responses from subpersonalities. The dialogue may continue or they may become quiet. Look for a sense of connection, agreement, or a part withdrawing. 4. Repeat steps A and B if the subpersonality continues to speak or if a new part steps in. Points • If an emotional part emerges and the client feels sad or the desire to cry, help his or her Self narrate the release of feelings—It is fine to cry; Make noise; Breathe; Don’t hold back. • Be aware of the emergence of a new part—Ask, What inner voice are you hearing now?

Adapted from Empowering Dialogues Within, © Kate Cohen-Posey (John Wiley & Sons Inc. 2008)

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Personality parts do not need to change, integrate, or disappear. Core Being is strengthened any time it identifies, narrates, or questions individual facets. If a part continues a disturbing line of thinking, the Self can simply compliment its strength. Notice negative reactions clients have towards a part. This indicates the presence of another subpersonality. Narrating its messages and asking it questions can make its identity clearer—You seem annoyed with what the OCD part puts Bess through. Is there another part that wants to make it stop? Is it hard to trust Bess’s true Self to keep OCD from taking over? When a client’s real Self is in charge, it will always feel compassionate, caring, or curiousity towards even the most hostile subpersonalities.

Adapted from Empowering Dialogues Within, © Kate Cohen-Posey (John Wiley & Sons Inc. 2008)