If you already have a part in mind that you would like to get to know more, then you can ignore the suggestion at the beginning of the exercise to follow an initial thought, feeling or body sensation in order to find a part to work with.
Be aware of thoughts, emotions and sensations but you can choose to listen to a particular part of yourself and its feelings, thoughts and, most importantly, where is seems to be coming from in your body.
So, when you’re ready and in your own time, gently close your eyes and begin to go inside.
Connect with your breathing, no need to change anything, just noticing where your breath is today.
Maybe you can feel the breath flowing past your nostrils, maybe you can feel your chest rising and falling, maybe you can feel your belly expanding and contracting with each in-breath and out-breath.
And just letting go with each exhale.
I’m going to invite you to a little bit of a scan of your body and your mind. Noting in particular. Any thoughts or emotions, sensations, impulses, that stand out.
So we’re just noticing what’s there. And starting to feel a little separation from it a little bit. A bit of disidentification.
Noticing what’s happening, in your body and your mind. Shifting your focus inside rather than outside.
Then as you do that, see if one of those things, the emotion, the sensation, impulse or though is calling to you, seems to want your attention.
And if so, try to give it your attention exclusively for a minute, just recognising it, and see if you can notice where it seems to be located in your body or around your body.
And as you recognise it, I’m going to ask you to notice – How do you feel towards it? Do you dislike it? Does it annoy you? Are you afraid of it? Do you want it to go away, to get rid of it?
So we’re just noticing that; you have a relationship with this… whatever it is, emotion or sensation.
So I’m going to ask you to ask the parts of yourself that have negative feelings towards this part, the parts of you that might not like it or are afraid of it, or have any other extreme feeling about it; to just relax inside, and give you a little space to get to know it without any kind attitude or position towards this part of you.
So just see if it’s possible to become kind of mindfully curious about it. With the assumption that it might have something to tell you.
And if you can’t get there. That’s okay. You could talk to the parts of you that don’t want to separate, don’t want to relax, about their fears about doing that. About their fears about letting you actually interact with this emotion or thought or impulse.
But if you can get into that mindfully, curious place, relative to this one, then it is safe to begin to interact with it.
And that might feel that odd to you at this point, but just give it a try if you’re okay with that. By that I mean – as you focus on this emotion or impulse or thought or sensation.. and you notice it in this place in your body, ask it if there’s something it wants you to know.
And then wait for an answer. Don’t think of the answer, so any thinking parts can relax too. Just wait silently. With your focus on that place in your body. Until an answer comes.
And if nothing comes, that’s okay too. And if you get an answer. Then a follow up question might be – What is it afraid would happen, if it didn’t do this inside of you. What’s it afraid would happen, if it didn’t take on this role inside?
So just reflect for a moment on the way that this part of your behaves inside
What are the characteristics of this part of yourself?
What is its intention in behaving in the way it does?
What does this part need?
What is its will engaged in that it would rather not be having to do?
What are the qualities at the heart of this part of yourself?
And if it answered some of those questions, then perhaps you learned something about how it’s trying to protect you. In which case, see if it’s possible, to extend some appreciation towards it, for at least trying to keep you safe somehow. And see how it reacts to your appreciation.
And the last question for now – Ask this part of you. What does it need from you in the future?
Would it be willing to let you take over some of the responsibilities that it has been burdened by?
Thank this part of you for what it let you know. And let it know that this isn’t the last chance it has to have a conversation with you. And that now you’ve got to know it a little bit, you’re going to start to get to know it even more.
So when your ready, and in your own time. Become aware of your body once more. The weight of your body on the chair holding you up. The contact your feet are making with the ground. Maybe give your toes a little wiggle.
And come back into the room where you are.