Sometimes, when teaching important tools, it’s helpful to use an object lesson that is unforgettable. Often the more outrageous the more memorable. My Higher Self Glasses fit this description – outrageous and unforgettable. I pull the glasses out and put them on my face and have a good chuckle with my clients.
On the lens of these glasses are words that represent attitudes associated with the best in us humans. The qualities include: connection, calm, curiosity, courage, compassion, confidence, clarity, and creativity.
The qualities of the higher self are derived from Richard Schwartz’s work in Internal Family Systems. He identified eight qualities of Self Leadership, all starting with the letter “C”. I tell clients that these attitudes will help them “see” themselves most accurately and allow for healthy internal interaction and change.
When we look at ourselves through this lens we can see what is going on and what needs to shift in order to bring us in alignment with our potential and our wise mind. These qualities are the most spiritual aspects of ourselves as humans. They are godlike attitudes and therefore are challenging for humans to emulate in a consistent fashion.
The inevitable problem in holding these higher self attitudes is that as we look through this lens we often find our view clouded by judgment. Judgment distorts our view, in a similar way that the crud that gets on my eyeglasses distorts my vision of what I see. I have to stop several times each day to clean my glasses of the curd that mysteriously attaches itself to my lens. Likewise, judgment attaches itself to our perspective of our selves and the world and, without our intention, distorts our ability to see clearly.
In my object lesson, I hold up the judgment sheet in front of my lens to show how the splotches of judgment block my vision.
As silly as this is, my clients don’t tend to forget the lesson. We are then off to discussions about how they can view and respond to themselves from this place, how this perspective makes a difference in one’s ability to steer one’s own life, and how challenging it is to remember to wipe off the judgment. Lalita Tademy, in the book Cane River, wrote the line,” It cannot teach us, that which we look at with shame.” I believe this is true.
To help my clients remember the six qualities of the higher self I send them home with a bookmark with these qualities listed. Many clients have told me that striving for these qualities have been very helpful in changing the way they view and relate to themselves and others.