A Guide To Achieving Individuation

In Jungian psychology, self-realization – the ultimate ideal – is achieved through individuation. According to Jung, the “self” archetype is the regulating core of one’s psyche. Instabilities and abnormalities within this center are what causes disorders or illness. An individual experiences the self through subconscious symbolism, usually in the form of dreams and religious attachment. Psychology, thus, becomes a tool that brings the subconscious to consciousness. It is only through the integration of these two concepts can self-realization be found.

Many analytic psychologists say that the process of self-realization is not difficult, only requiring diligence, patience, and practice. The first recommendation is starting a dream diary. As mentioned earlier, dreams carry hidden messages and meanings. These symbols project unknown fears and desires – fundamental concepts that need to be known. However, most people forget their dreams within a few minutes of waking. There is difficulty in keeping an accurate record of one’s dreams. The journal becomes a way for people to record their dreams accurately. From this, patterns can be found. These can be dissected and discussed with one’s psychologist. Effective therapy plans are now designed.

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Another good practice is to question one’s beliefs constantly. Again, beliefs are said to be the conclusion of subconscious feelings. By questioning these beliefs, people actively force introspection. This process though is met with success in various forms. Some patients find it to be beneficial, others not so much. Still, it is important for patients to try their hand at it for at least two weeks to see how much introspection can move forward conscious-subconscious awareness.

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Paul Gabrinetti is a Jungian-trained clinical psychologist. For more information on Jungian psychology, follow this Twitter account.

The Role of Jungian Psychology in Mentoring Medical Professionals

Analytical psychology, or Jungian psychology, is a school of thought developed by Carl Jung which stresses the importance of the ego and the personal quest for wholeness. It also states that the psyche is yearning for a balance between the conscious and unconscious states.

This said balance can be achieved through the study of dreams. Training analysts believe that Jungian psychology is an appropriate means of supervising clinicians in their field of work. Below are some of ways how this psychological model is being utilized as a form of mentorship:

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1. Counter-transference
To understand their patients at a deeper level, clinicians must establish an emotional connection with them. In other words, they must redirect their feelings toward their clients. Counter-transference is of immense clinical utility as it allows the therapist to play a role congruent with his or her patient’s internal world.

2. Self-discovery
Among psychologists, it is presumed that psychopathology cannot be taught. Instead, it must be discovered in the apprentice’s own analytical experiences. Carl Jung’s theory explicitly points to the examination of the ego. This provides the analytical viewpoints that learners need in order to understand psychopathology.

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3. Jungian archetypes
Carl Jung’s theory identifies four cardinal orientations, namely ego, freedom, social, and order. In each orientation lies three archetypes, which are then used by the mentor. This will provide the learning clinical psychologist with knowledge on how to deal with patients.

Paul Gabrinetti, Ph.D., is a Jungian analyst and clinical psychologist on the faculty of C.G. Jung Institute of Los Angeles’ analyst training program. He is a former instructor at the University of Southern California. More about him can be read here.