The last two months have somehow been a real roller coaster ride for me! I’ve been going up and down as far as my emotions are concerned. Although I can’t really complain too much because I have improved on my awareness levels and have been pretty well aware of all the ups and downs I was going through. Still, there’s always scope for improvement. These two months have however definitely given me a whole new insight as far as assertiveness training goes!
The shift in my awareness actually happened almost a month ago while I was assisting my colleague in a training session. We were conducting a session on Team Building using some of the concepts of Transactional Analysis. It was a two day session and my colleague had just finished explaining the Basic Life Positions Model. I had heard the explanation many times before and had even gone through the model myself on multiple occasions in the past; however that explanation proved to be different.
Am not sure if you’ve ever experienced such a thing before but let me try to put what happened in words. Have you ever read something and felt it so strongly that it becomes a part of you? You know like when you read a concept or theory. Sometimes you read the concept for the sake of reading it and land up doing it very mechanically. It’s just like how we used to read concepts and theories in school and college. We had to keep going back to the concepts just before our exam as we would tend to forget them.
Many of those very concepts we don’t need to go back to now. After having worked in the corporate world, those concepts which seemed alien to us before, now make perfect sense. In fact if someone were to ask you a question on some of those concepts, you would realize that you really don’t need to go back to your books. You can spontaneously give an explanation for it and even confidently argue on some of its aspects! Making more sense?
That’s what happened to me that day. Basic Life Positions was no longer a theory in a book for me anymore. I didn’t need to turn the pages to check what traits each of the four positions had. Why, because I had felt them, I had experienced them. I knew from what I felt while experiencing each one of them what Eric Burne meant when he wrote them. I also clearly understood the difference between each one and where they were all coming from.
The very next day, that’s on day 2 of the session, I got a live experience of the I-U+ Position. I was somehow feeling very uncomfortable inside. I felt broken inside. When I looked at others around me they looked so much happier, so content. It really felt like I was the only unhappy soul around. I realized that I was passive most of the time but had a tendency to get aggressive. It was as if something inside me was really upset and wanted to tell everyone to keep away from me by growling at them!
Not only could I feel this life position strongly but I realized I could also feel the drivers that were driving me. Something kept pushing me from inside and told me to ‘try harder’ to not get affected. I was in a training session and my behavior had to ‘be perfect.’ I had to ‘be strong’ and could not let myself loose as I had to ‘please others’ and not let them see my current vicious state. I so wanted to go outside and take a break but how could I leave my duty.
I really had to make an effort to allow myself to walk out of the room. I went to the adjoining room and perched myself on a chair. I put my feet up on the neighboring chair and just allowed myself to feel the battle raging on inside me. I kept feeling guilty for having walked out and kept my ears open as to what was happening in the session so that I go there if need be. I didn’t want the session to get affected in any way and kept pushing myself to ‘hurry up’ and get back.
The turmoil kept increasing and reached an insane level. Then suddenly something inside me snapped. The war had abruptly come to an end and I could feel a huge peace inside me. Everything was calm and quiet. I could no longer feel the turbulence that had been creating havoc inside me. I didn’t feel hurried anymore nor did I have the urge to go to the adjoining room to keep the audience ‘pleased’. The struggle had ended and I could now sit with myself peacefully.
I now go up and went into the training room. Everything looked beautiful to me. I felt happy and so did the rest of the class. I could now interact with them and share the happiness that I felt in my heart with them. I had reached the I+U+ life position. I now knew what it felt like. I also now came to know what a position of assertiveness meant. I knew what respected others and respecting yourself meant. I knew what caring about others and caring about yourself meant. I now knew where assertiveness was truly born out of and how it could be an effortless state.
In the remaining month I also got to experience the other two life positions, the aggressive one which operates from I-U+ and the depressive one which operates from I-U-. I can tell you my experience with them some other time!
If you would like to accompany us in our journey towards assertiveness and would like to be part of our assertiveness training, do get in touch with us. We would love you take you along with us and take help you experience that blissful state, something far beyond what a book could describe!
To know more about our Assertiveness Training sessions, visit us as at http://www.theyellowspot.info/soft-behavioural-skills.php