Sharing My Progress

Saturday 28 October, 2000

Edited the notes from the Training Workshop for the men’s group. I went through the same process as outlined yesterday. It applies to everything. This means I am likely to feel demotivated before any undertaking but it is not a problem because I now know what to look for and, with patience, I will achieve my goals. Brilliant.

I was excited about the feedback from the men on the work which Karaj and I have achieved in the garden. Unfortunately, apart from Robert and a comment from Leon, there was very little positive feedback and hardly any enthusiasm. I felt disappointed and wondered whether I was intruding on their group session. I am not a member of this group and the only other session I attended was as a result of the Liverpool trip. Also, because of my close work with Karaj I felt like the teacher’s pet, so I decided to keep a low profile within the group and to maintain a minimal contribution so as not to upset anyone or appear arrogant.

[Karaj: That is inverted arrogance.]

The session opened with feedback on people’s self-appraisals. As people read passages chosen randomly from their journals it struck me just how useful it is to commit to paper what happens in our lives. As we write down what happens to us, we automatically draw conclusions and Karaj’s feedback completes the therapeutic process.

Karaj and I then talked about the process I have undergone in the last 15 months. From being laid flat out on my back for weeks in pain, to digging the garden. I talked about separation and how important it is, because of my script, for me to stay away from women and their mothering influence (see ‘It’s My Script’ for more details), and to gain my own independence. All this has led to an improvement in my physical health which enabled me to work in the garden digging and shifting earth in hundreds and hundreds of buckets.

At the beginning of the process it was difficult. I was still addicted to my old habits and I had to see for myself many times what they were doing to me before I learned my lesson. Nevertheless, I was committed to learning. I avoided contact with women more and more. I endured the pain of being alone. I used the same discipline which helped me with my morning exercises and walks to Karaj’s, to keep me away from the situations which were doing me harm. As I did this I began to notice the benefits of my new ways of living, which gave me the inspiration to continue. It was the same with the buckets. At first it was difficult and very hard work, but with discipline and commitment I began to see the progress.

The discussion had a dual purpose:

  • For me to see that my creativity will flow as a result of the mundane tasks I perform. The hard work moving the earth was necessary in order to reach the creative elements such as the patio, the wall and the bridge. This mirrors the hard work I did on myself which gave me the strength to work in the garden in the first place. If I had not gone through the pain of separation I could never have enjoyed the pleasure of independence. If I had not dug the earth I could not have created the garden.
  • For the others to see that the mundane work has to be done. It is not possible to circumvent the issues in one’s life. These have to be tackled if we are to make progress. Neither is it possible to lead a dual life. If I am committed to the process it means incorporating all I learn in the therapy sessions into my life. It is no good attending the men’s group and then continuing to mess around as before. I must be prepared to live my new life as fully as possible and not just once a month or once a fortnight for a few hours.

I received feedback from Ishwar, Earl and Leon who all expressed their pleasure at having me in the group. This allayed my earlier fears. I expressed these fears and Karaj, in his usual abrupt style, confirmed that I was indeed teacher’s pet. Naveen told me that it took courage to do what I was doing and also to work with Karaj. Ishwar confirmed this because he had seen others do the same who were eventually asked to leave by Karaj because they became too cocky. Leon expressed jealousy at what I was doing. I still cannot see the courage because the work I am doing feels as natural a part of life as sleeping and eating. The feedback I received served to welcome me to the group and I appreciated it.

[Karaj: You cannot see your courage because you worry.]

Naveen talked about his problems with his eldest brother who winds him up whenever they talk. Karaj pointed out that it is his brother’s privilege as eldest son to do what he likes. Naveen does not have to react and as such any problems he has with his brother are of his making. There is no need to get wound up about it – just live your life. Naveen also challenged Sunil about his need to think everything through before reacting. Sunil was unmoved by the observation and again it was seen as Naveen’s problem. Naveen noted that during the weekend in Wales the two of them did connect while out walking or playing pool, which helped to highlight possible ways in which the two of them can better interact with each other because, as both made clear, they do want to be able to relate to each other.

A great day.

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