Aug22

1. Engage your untamed self

The deeper inside is our untamed self. It is the discovery of our bodily and emotional source from which we relate with the outside. In contrast with experiencing our body or the outside as an object, living an ecological worldview is based on a rich inner experience in relation to the outside world. Although individuality can be experienced as a location in space and time, engaging the deeper self means that the experience of self is also located in the outside. The ecologization of everyday life is to transform self into an eco-self. An eco-self is the self that has experientially understood that it is part of a life web. There are 4 pillars in this transformation:

First and most important is the activation of emotions. Ecologize always starts with the activation of an inside experience. These emotions are felt in the area of your heart, your belly, and root chakra. It is the ability to feel anxiety, anger, sadness, alienation, as much as love and wonder. They are the basis of the experiential connection with all living and non-living beings. Often this vital emotional source is suppressed through socialisation and educational processes. The first thing to do is accept that your emotions are a necessary foundation for the connection with the outside.

Secondly, you can engage your inside by being more sensitive towards your own personality and biography. You have your values, needs, and aspirations. You have a life story and a character. You have strengths, talents, qualities, but also pitfalls, and weaknesses. You are representing a social class and cultural context. You can activate your value system and motivation in relation to your job. You chose once to study a profession because of a projection of inner values and perspectives. The activation of your personality into your behaviour contrasts with a blind activism. A professional can act as if his personality is not part of the job. Engaging the deeper self is an emotional and cognitive presence of your inner self into the outside expression.

Are your emotions active when interacting with the world?
Is your personality expressed in your actions?

Thirdly, the eco-self can be nourished through your sensitive channels, especially the tactile, smell, taste, the tonality of sound, the colours of the visual. Eating for example can be a task to do, but also a rich sensual experience. Speaking and listening can become the awareness of music. Reality can become mystical through the lenses of a photographer. Often reality seems to be hard and cold, but not for the poet. It requires a constant activation of senses not to be seduced to live in a mechanical conceptual universe. Someone who lives with a rich eco-self, lives with his senses.

Fourthly, self-concept can be enlarged. The outside can become part of your self. Our traditional concept of self matches the boundaries of our body. In contrast, the eco-self is not located at the inside of the body. The self is extended from the inside experience to all bonds in the eco-system. For a parent, the child is an extension of his identity. When the child is hurt, the parent is hurt to. We often are deeply affected when we loose a material object. Our self was attached to it. Loosing something, is experienced as loosing a bit of self. The eco-self is an extended self. It includes all those beings that you hold in your experience. Maybe your self is your family or you feel one with a natural landscape. Maybe your extended self contains also your house and your car. You can enlarge the realm of your self by encompassing emotionally other beings, for example, your clients.

Is your client an outside 'it' or part of your eco-self?