Bad Deeds

Sometimes a client has done something that she feels ashamed of and therefore holds back. She is labeling some past or current action of hers as "bad" and she hides it away.

It is not particularly an aim of processing to get people to reveal their secrets. We are not going to judge anything, so really it doesn't matter what specifically people have done. They don't have to confess and be forgiven.

However, the mechanisms involved in labeling one's past actions as "bad", and therefore holding oneself back from future action of a similar nature, are quite damaging.

Our approach is to bring out the good in people. Any action past, present or future will have a basically positive intention behind it, if we look deep enough. If it appears otherwise, we will just look closer or we will look at it differently.

When confronted with apparently BAD things the client has done, your task is to uncover the full scene, uncover the positive intentions, draw out the positive learnings, increase the person's flexibility, tolerance and acceptance of herself. We are trying to accomplish that she can accept herself without any need to judge herself negatively.

One particularly explosive phenomenon is when a bad deed has almost surfaced but not quite. If the hidden act was almost revealed, but not quite, and the person doesn't quite know if other people know or not. That is much worse than either keeping it secret or bringing it out in the open.

A person who is "almost found out" will tend to get very defensive or upset, and is likely to attack the person who "almost found out". The only way of dealing with it is to bring forward that which is hidden or to reframe it as not being bad. Which is a bit hard if we don't know what it is. So, we must bring the whole thing forward and resolve the whole area as thoroughly as possible.

A facilitator can accidentally, by her mannerisms, suggest to the client that her secrets are almost being found out and thereby cause a violent reaction. That can happen if the facilitator isn't fully there and the client doesn't quite know if she has been understood or not. And it can happen if the facilitator has a judgmental attitude and the client doesn't feel safe bringing up sensitive subjects.

The facilitator must be safe to communicate to. She must be neutral and open to a discussion of anything without having any need to judge it. She will work towards drawing out the good in everything, so there will be no need to hold anything back.

"Is there something you didn't tell me?"
"Did you hit on something that would make me think less of you?"
"Is there something I almost found out about you?"
"Do you feel I would judge what you are saying?"
"Is there something I haven't understood?"
"What is the positive intention?"

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