The Fool
The Magician
Stage One
The High Priestess
Stage Two
The Empress
Stage Three

The Emperor
Stage Four

The Hierophant
Stage Five

The Lovers
Stage Six

The Chariot
Stage Seven
Part Two
Part Three

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"Look for your other half
who walks always next to you
and tends to be who you aren't."
Antonio Machado

Harnessing your parts

It can sometimes be difficult to make progress because different parts of you want different things. Normally each part has a positive intention - your experience of pain, for example, protects you from carelessness.

Yet rapid movement only becomes possible when every part of you is pulling in unison. The following process provides an opportunity for your subconscious to communicate in consciousness, and to generate new behaviors in line with your conscious intentions. Be willing to be surprised!

1. Choose a behavior or feeling or thought that continually undermines your performance and that you wish to change.
Pick something specific (X) and then think about "the part that makes me X".

2. Set up communication with the part.

Turn inward, acknowledge this part, and apologize for any past hostility. The more kind and gentle you are, the more willing the part will be to communicate with you.
Close your eyes and ask a question inside: "Will the part of me that makes me X, communicate with me in consciousness, now?"
Notice what you see, hear, feel, taste or smell.
If you notice a signal, thank the part for communicating with you, and test the communication.
Say "If you mean "yes", you are willing to communicate with me in consciousness, please increase the signal. If you mean "no", you are not willing to communicate, please decrease the signal."
(If the answer is "no", or if you receive no communication, assume the part has a good reason to not want you to consciously know its intention. Thank the part and move on, imagining its responses.)
3. Separate the behavior from the positive intention.
Ask the part "Are you willing to let me know what you want for me that's positive by doing X?" If the answer is Yes, a positive intention may spring to your mind. Call this the part that wants Y. If the new intention seems negative, keep asking "What do you want for me that's positive by doing that?" until you agree.

4. Find new behaviors or responses.
Ask "If there were other ways to get similar or better results would you be willing to use them?"
You should get a positive response to this if the part understands your question. You are offering new choices without taking the old choice away.
You can now draw upon the part of you that is creative, for a brainstorming session.
Ask the part that wants Y to go to the creative part.
Ask the creative part to cooperate with the part that wants Y.
Ask the part that wants Y to signal when it selects a new choice.
It doesn't matter whether or not you are consciously aware of what the new choices are.
When you have three "yes's, thank both parts.

5. Gain commitment and test the process.

Elicit the commitment of the part that wants Y by asking "Are you willing to actually use these new alternatives in appropriate situations to find out how well they work?"
If the answer is no, elicit the objections. You may have to go back to step four to get additional choices.

6. Check for personal ecology.

Finally, ask all your other parts "Does any other part of me have an objection to any of my new choices?" If you get no internal signals, you have completed the process.
If you get a "yes", check whether it's a real objection or just excitement. If it is real, repeat the reframing process, working with both the new part and the part that wants Y to find three new choices that satisfy both intentions.
If more than one part objects, ask all the objecting parts to form a committee. A consensus, rather than a majority, results in gentle and lasting change.


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Copyright © 2000 by Jenny and Chris Gilders,
Tarot cards by Rider-Waite, U.S.Games, Inc.