Episode One of the True Self Manifestation Podcast
Today I wanted to talk a little bit about what Internal Family Systems is, and how I find it is incredibly helpful for manifestation.
This is the recap of episode one. You can find the podcast page here if you would like to listen to it in its entirety.
What is Internal Family Systems
Internal Family Systems is an evidence based therapy practice, developed by Richard Schwartz. He explains it best by saying “internal Family Systems is a powerfully transformative evidence-based model of psychotherapy, we believe the mind is naturally multiple. And that is a good thing. Our inner parts contain valuable qualities. And our core self knows how to heal, allowing us to become integrated, and whole. In IFS all parts are welcome.”
It’s not unusual to have multiple parts. And it doesn’t mean that there’s anything wrong with us that we do, because we all have them. And this is not a D.I.D. or Dissociative Identity Disorder by any means. I just wanted to point that out. What we’re talking about is the idea that we can notice different aspects of our personalities coming out at different times.
We’re born with all of our parts, just like we are born with our True Self. Our True Self is our authentic self, our higher self, or soul, our spirit. You can call it whatever you would like to call it. But in Internal Family Systems, we call it True Self.
How Our Parts Can Show Up
We find that our parts often take on new jobs and roles throughout our lives, often starting in childhood, based on our experiences. For example, a part could take on the role of a perfectionist if it saw that you were reprimanded for not doing a “good job”. This part is trying to avoid the hurt and pain the system felt by being reprimanded.
This is where IFS comes in. The concept of IFS is to work with the parts of us that are stuck in these jobs and roles. We build a relationship with between True Self and the parts and even allow the parts to choose new jobs that are still in alignment with their intention. And also, something that they actually want to do without feeling overwhelmed or exhausted. Our parts can actually take a break if they would like to. And that’s really powerful. Thinking about being able to have more control over what’s going on internally. Not only that but allowing the parts to take that step back and to be able to really see what is happening, that it’s no longer this thing that happened when we were a child.
True Self in Internal Family Systems
That is the benefit of Internal Family Systems. The intention of all of this is to put True Self in the driver’s seat, and that the parts are there to help navigate. IFS helps True Self work with those parts so that we can become Self-led. And the parts can do the things that they want to do and need to do based on those positive intentions, being much more helpful than harmful.
Relating Internal Family Systems and Manifestation
Now, you might be asking, what does Internal Family Systems have to do with manifestation? Well, let me tell you to be successful and consistent with our manifestation practice, we need to be in our worth, and in alignment with our True Self, our authentic self, to be able to connect with the Universe.
We’re unable to do this if our parts are taking over and doing things like self-sabotaging behaviors. For example, self-sabotaging behaviors can be perfectionism, people pleasing, that harsh inner critical voice, procrastination, and there are others. But I’ve seen that those are oftentimes the main ones. The self-sabotaging behaviors come from a place of fear, judgment, expectations, and limiting beliefs. None of these sound like we are in our worth, or in alignment with our True Self when we’re feeling this.
Using Internal Family Systems we can see that our self-sabotaging behaviors blocking our manifestations, are actually parts of us. And they took on these new jobs or roles in our childhood as a reaction to what we were dealing with at the time. Remember, our parts all have positive intentions. I’ll give you an example, if a caregiver was critical of us, a part of us is going to take on this role. The intention behind it is to keep us in line to prevent getting scolded, yelled at, or whatever that critical caretaker was doing. So, it becomes critical of us. This is often times the inner critic, that inner harsh, critical voice that we have.
Now another example would be the people pleaser part. This part most likely came about because of fear of rejection, abandonment or insecurities that it picked up earlier in life.
And in case you are wondering, we cannot get rid of any parts. But we can reassure them that we can’t get rid of them, because it is a big fear. Once we understand their perspective, and we gain an understanding of why they have taken on this role for so long, we can become more compassionate, and be more open to that part. And right there, this is where we start to find harmony. And we can have a system inside of us that really runs well together with True Self taking the lead. So, isn’t that exciting?
Why Law of Attraction doesn’t Work
I wanted to also talk about those New Age manifestation practices that I find to be very harmful. This includes the Law of Attraction. If you’re not familiar with the Law of Attraction, or the Secret, which is a book and a movie based on the Law of Attraction. It’s based on this premise of being able to think positively so that you can raise your vibration, and the Universe will provide. but you need to only think positively because if you do not think positively only then we cannot co- create and manifest with the Universe.
This is where I struggle with the idea of the Law of Attraction and that positive thinking only. The concept is that if you think positively about yourself and about the things that are going on around you, you are going to build your self-worth. However, that is so not true. You cannot “fake it till you make it” when it comes to self-worth.
Self-worth is internal, our self-worth is rooted in our subconscious. And if we are pretending, which is really what this whole positive thinking thing is, if we’re not actually working on that root cause of why we’re not feeling good about ourselves, we are pretending and then that’s ego, which is a part.
By doing this positive thinking only, our manifestations are not going to come through. And that’s because this whole premise of the Law of Attraction and the positive thinking is based on conscious thoughts. If we are only working on a conscious level, and not in that subconscious level where our self-worth is rooted, we’re not going to really get anywhere. We need to get out of the conscious level and dig deeper. When we are working in that conscious level, we are avoiding and invalidating those parts of us that have been hurt in the past.
We can’t avoid or repress these parts, we can’t get them to go away. What we’re doing when we’re just doing the positive thinking only is that we’re spiritual bypassing. And if you’re not familiar with this term, it’s defined as “a tendency to use spiritual ideas and practices to sidestep or avoid facing unresolved emotional issues, psychological wounds, and unfinished developmental tasks”.
When we are spiritually bypassing, we are not in alignment with our True Self. And we are not going to be able to manifest because we’re not able to connect with the Universe. Because the parts are going to be in the way. The parts haven’t healed. We need to look at all of our parts and accept all of them and work with them. We can help them and heal them.
Now of course or if your self-worth is already all good, and you feel really good about yourself, then the Law of Attraction probably works great for you. For the rest of us, we need some help. And we need to be able to get into our subconscious and deal with those limiting beliefs, those expectations, those societal pressures, and norms that are getting in the way of what we want in our lives.
In other words, those self-sabotaging parts of us that are fueled by those limiting beliefs, expectations, societal norms and pressures, to keep going, despite what our True Self actually longs for. The premise of the Law of Attraction is all about mindset. And although I appreciate a good mindset shift, if you are not getting to the root so that you can heal and work with those parts that are blocking you from being in your full self-worth.
The Universe isn’t Spiteful
In these New Age manifestation practices there is a belief around thinking negatively and if we are thinking negatively we will manifest bad things. I really struggle with this concept. I don’t believe that my Universe is spiteful. It is not punishing. I feel that the Universe understands if we’re having a bad day, if we’re going to be upset, if we are going to have issues with something if we are not going to be in constant high vibes, or whatever it is, I think the universe is much more forgiving. I think that if it sees that we are working towards something and we are working on ourselves, then that is what the universe wants to see. Right?
We’re never going to be perfect. And I don’t think the Universe expects it. I don’t believe that everything happens for a reason, either. Because that goes back to the idea that the universe is spiteful. Instead, I do think that bad things happen. Because we don’t have control over everything. We all have free will. There are bad people out there in the world. And there are bad things that happen. We sometimes don’t have control. And that’s okay. It’s not our fault.
My Universe is loving and forgiving. When we are unable to express any negative thoughts or feelings, we end up invalidating those parts of us that are feeling some type of way. We invalidate that angry part that might rightfully feel angry. Or we invalidate that sad part that is feeling hurt and needs some nurturing from us from our True Self.
Let’s not Invalidate Our Parts
Once we figure out how to to work with those parts that are feeling these ways, it becomes much more manageable. Internal Family Systems doesn’t take away all of the, negative or bad feelings or thoughts. It actually just helps us work with those parts that are feeling that way. So that we can give them the things that they always needed, that they might have needed when we were children.
And this is how Internal Family Systems helps us with manifestation. We tune into our True Self, become self-led. We work with those parts that are sabotaging us and lowering our self-worth, then we are able to live in alignment with our True Self and not past programming and conditioning. This way we are open to the Universe and can manifest!
To listen to the full episode, click the link below!
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