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We enhance individual and organizational performance through the application of Personality Theories.

Group Exercises

Embracing the Opposites Within Us

Mar 13th, 2013

Yesterday in a workshop on problem solving, I realized the one problem we all face when trying to apply Jung�s function-attitudes---how does one go about integrating into one�s consciousness function-attitudes that are in opposition to what is natural?  As we examined each step in the problem solving process, we agreed each of the function-attitudes were needed.  However, at the end we all struggled with letting go of our most comfortable function-attitudes to embrace function-attitudes we acknowledged played an important role in our problem-solving. 

I was reminded of what Mike Reding, a Jungian analyst at the Jung Institute of San Francisco, told me years ago.  We were talking about developing the shadow function-attitudes, and I commented we had to let our heroic function-attitude fall off the wall and crack like Humpty-Dumpty.  Mike laughed at my comment and responded, "It has to shatter, not just crack.�  This morning I was reading from a Red Book Study Guide developed by Jill Fischer at Cyberdreamworks, Inc. in which she states, "We learn that the heroic attitude and the spirit that knows "no fear� will need to die if something new is to evolve.� 

I find myself confronted with the choice of holding on to what is comfortable and failing to integrate function-attitudes I know will improve my performance.  I hesitated to let go or plunge into the unknown with the belief that I will find what is needed and become comfortable using it.  Is plunging how it must be done?

Jung said, "It is no teaching and no instruction that I give you.  On what basis should I presume to teach you?  I give you news of the way of this man, not your own way.  My path is not your path, therefore I cannot teach you.  The way is within us, but not in the Gods, not in teachings, nor in laws.  Within us is the way, the truth and the life.�

We must find our own way to let the chaos of the uncontrolled function-attitudes flow into the order and meaning created by our controlled function-attitudes.  Plunging was my path, and learning that I can swim in the chaos allows me to continue down the path.  What is your path and what keeps you moving down that path?  Post your comments.

If you missed the Power Up Problem Solving Workshop, you can purchase here.

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