Changing Who We Are

Very often we come to counselling looking to change ourselves by ‘getting rid of’ a habit, a personality trait, a way of being. Change in that way of course is never easy and invariably it is something we have tried before and felt we have somehow failed at. The reality is that whilst we can change through growth and understanding ourselves better, we can never really rid ourselves of Who We Are.

The darker and most painful aspects of our personalities are usually the first on the hit list. Anger, jealousy, greed, hate, depression and sadness are hard to accept in ourselves and so the ideal is to be rid of these difficult feelings. The truth is not matter how hard we try – they will not go and this is because they are here to stay!

The great poet Rumi captures this perfectly:

Guest House

This being human is a guest house Every morning a new arrival. A joy, a depression, a meanness, some momentary awareness comes as an unexpected visitor. Welcome and entertain them all! Even if they are a crowd of sorrows, who violently sweep your house empty of its furniture, still treat each guest honourably. He may be clearing you out for some new delight. The dark thought, the shame, the malice, meet them at the door laughing, and invite them in. Be grateful for whoever comes, because each has been sent as a guide from beyond.


This entry was posted in Poetry by elise.

ALL our feelings dark or light belong to us and us alone, and the chance for change and growth is in how we use them and work with them to help us through our everyday lives. We need to learn to become friends with and compassionate towards ourselves and Who We Are, warts and all. This is the hardest work that any of us will undertake and we need to be willing to face each of these darker parts of ourselves (or subpersonalities in Psychosynthesis terms) in order to make the process of transformation possible.

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