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Quotes for Inspiration
May what I do flow from me like a river,
and no holding back."
(Rainer Maria Rilke)
* * *
"Life is meant to be a never-ending education, and when this is fully appreciated, we are no longer survivors, but adventurers."
* * *
"Take a rest.
A field that has rested gives a bountiful crop."
* * *
"If you can sit quietly after difficult news;
if in financial downturns you remain
if you can see your neighbors travel to fantastic places without a twinge of jealousy;
if you can happily eat whatever is put on your plate;
if after a day of running around you can fall asleep without a drink
or a pill;
if you can always find contentment just where you are...
you are probably a dog!"
I found "Super 8" to be one of this summer's most entertaining, endearing, and enlightening films--and a worthy jumping off point for some reflections about what helps us heal, and how therapy can be part of that healing. That's the subject of "Good To See You," the essay for this Autumn edition of my e-newsletter, an edition that begins my 5th year of publishing "Living With Purpose And Passion." As usual, I've also included inspiring quotes, news of my upcoming workshops, links to some helpful resources, and "3 Good Poems." I trust you'll find something here that offers you insight, comfort, and hope as you continue on your journey, and settle into the crisp days, lengthening nights, and abundant harvest of the season of Autumn.
Reflections: "Good to see you."
One of my favorite movies from this past summer is "Super 8," which is part science fiction, part coming-of-age romance, and part redemptive fairy tale. Among the many things I love about this film is a scene that reminds me of a ritual I've been practicing with my psychotherapy clients for years.
The scene shows "Joe," the 12 year old boy who is at the center of the story, sitting in his room with "Alice," a girl from school who, like Joe, understands the experience of loss. They are watching old Super 8 movies of Joe's mother, who died a few months earlier in an accident at the factory where she worked. "It's so weird watching her like this, like she's still here" Joe says to Alice. After a long, poignant silence, he adds "She used to look at me this way...like really look...and I just knew that I was there, that I existed."
For years I've begun each session in my psychotherapy practice with a ritual. As I invite each client from my waiting room into my office and close the door behind us to begin our session, I say to them "Good to see you."
It began, years ago, as a simple, sincere greeting, but one day, when a client replied "It's good to be seen by you," I knew it had evolved into a ritual, one that makes clear the heart of therapy: before anything else, therapy is about being seen. It's about having your life witnessed, about having someone look at you, "really look," in a way that leaves you feeling "I know I'm here. I exist. I matter."
Once you have that, anything becomes possible.
Late in the film, Joe comes face to face with the movie's alien creature, who, according to the story, had crash landed on earth decades ago and has been hunted by the authorities ever since. Though it has been stealing everything from truck engines to microwave ovens from the people of the town, the creature doesn't mean any harm, it just wants to repair its ship and go home--a metaphor for the longing inside each one of us.
Joe tracks the alien to its hiding place, which is underground: good filmmakers, like good therapists, know that healing involves going down into, not rising above. The creature, who is perhaps 30 feet tall, grabs Joe, and lifts him up so they are eye-to-eye. Fighting back his terror, Joe looks tenderly at the alien and says "I know bad things happen! But you can still live..." The alien looks back at Joe for a long time, and comes to realize that this boy is different from the others: he understands.
Bad things happen. Painful things. Life-changing things. Mothers die. Ships crash. Workers lose their jobs. Relationships end. People get depressed and anxious. But you can still live.
And it all begins...with being seen.
Upcoming workshops & lectures by Dan Keusal
Saturday October 8, 2011:
"Getting More From Your Relationships"
Saturday November 12, 2011:
"You Have All The Time In The World:
Transforming Your Relationship With Time."(just in time for the busy holiday season!)
For details and information on how to register and pay, visit the "Workshops
" page of my web site!
If you would like me to come speak to your group, please call me at (206) 523-1340, or email
You can view a list of the organizations
that have invited me to speak, and a list of my recent workshops
, by visiting my web site.
Resources for a Richer Life
More than just "self-help," Resources For A Richer Life is meant to bring you music, movies, books, magazines, web sites, events, videos and more that will stir your soul, and awaken the deepest, most alive parts of you.
(daily blog) "Words of Art"
(by Karen Bonnell). Each day, a thoughtful quote paired with an inspiring photograph. To sign up, visit TransformRelationships.com/blog, or just click here
(once you've signed up, you'll receive an email each day with a link to that day's quote & photo).
(weekly e-newsletter) Public Radio Market Update.
e-newsletter is one of my personal favorites, featuring links to books, music, movies, interviews, and more from Public Radio programs. To see samples of featured items, click here
. To sign up, click here
; be sure to scroll down and check the box for "Public Radio Market Update (weekly)."
3 Good Poems
In this edition of "3 Good Poems," Tony Hoagland suggests that "pleasure is a thing that also needs accomplishing," Charles Douthat writes about turning away from anguish when it turns up in an unexpected place, and Rumi reminds us that sometimes the way in isn't through the door.
Click on the titles below to read the poems online; you can also access them by going to the "Writings" page of my web site, finding the link for my "e-newsletters," and then clicking on link for the Autumn 2011 edition:
- "The Word" (Tony Hoagland)
- "Crying Man" (Charles Douthat)
- "Some Kiss We Want" (Rumi)
Psychotherapy for Individuals & Couples
I offer Jungian-oriented psychotherapy for individuals and couples. Whether you come to me with a problem (like depression, stress, anxiety, relationship issues) or simply the sense that it's time for a change, I help you look at how that starting point is calling you to grow, and how you can respond with creativity, vitality, and hope.
To learn more, visit my web site by clicking here
To schedule an appointment,
or if you have questions,
call me at (206) 523-1340.
This newsletter is one of the ways that I share helpful reflections and resources, and keep interested people informed about my work.
I sincerely do not want to bother you with unwanted email, so if you no longer wish to receive my e-newsletters, simply click on the "Safe Unsubscribe" link at the bottom of this email.
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That's it for this issue of "Living With Purpose and Passion." As always, I welcome your comments & suggestions. You can send me an email or you can call me at (206) 523-1340.To share this newsletter with friends, click on the "Forward Email" link, below.
Dan Keusal, M.S., LMFT
Jungian Psychotherapy for Individuals and Couples
Find Your Purpose, Heal Your Pain, Live With Passion
Web site: www.DanKeusal.com