Challenge & Choice Part 3
The Challenge And Choice Method For Changing Your Relationship To Life
Step one: Contracts And Scripts
Once the journey of self-inspection has begun, new vitality and the desire to share is a natural response. Despite our hopes that, with sharing, new opportunities to receive will occur, disappointment or an opportunity to face the central challenge in life frequently happens instead (14). How we respond is an opportunity to develop internal will.
Internal will is the exercising of responsible choice, which means something different for each of the nine personality types. It is the quality and quantity of energy that is put into learning that defines the amount of grace that is eventually received, not the act of sharing in and of itself (15).
Certain events and situations provide greater opportunities for learning than others. In the midst of one of these events ask yourself, what is the most probable outcome if you were to behave the way you normally would? Since most behavior is based upon past learning, in a sense the realm of possible outcomes of an ongoing event has already been determined (16).
By learning to live in the present moment, past fears, and anxiety about the future, can be circumvented and outcomes changed. The thinking mind, which depends upon time in order to exist, is referred to as the Ego. By focusing upon the present moment the Ego cannot project past experiences onto the future and is therefore disarmed (17).
Even when trying to stay in the present moment, the thinking mind can be overwhelming. One method to corral the Ego is to tell it that you prefer to be in charge, even if only for the next five minutes. Center your non-thinking self upon The Four Agreements (be impeccable with your word, don’t take anything personally, don’t make assumptions and always do your best) as the Ego may try to invoke one of them from the shadow side to distract you (18).
If you want to change your relationship to a challenge and its most probable outcome, you must first recognize that the challenge exists. The Challenge & Choice Home Tutorials are designed to provide you with the insight needed to define when you are in the midst of your most difficult, personal challenge. Transactional Analysis of Scripts, by asking you to identify if you are living a No Love, No Mind or No Joy economy of personal strokes is another tool to help you carry out responsible choice when it counts most (19,20).
Each of these economies is based upon having not received enough love, self-reliance or self-indulgence as a child. By allowing yourself to both recognize and accept these strokes when they are present, you can reduce your stroke deficit and the grip it has on you. Once you have successfully changed the most probable outcome into a more desirable one, internal will has been strengthened.
It is easy to recognize when learning has effectively brought forth real change; not only does a feeling of enhanced empowerment occur, the confining features of fate decrease while insight and energy increase. This in turn creates renewed desire to share. During the process of change you may also notice an evolution from necessity to choice and then compassion as the point of focus within the challenges you face.
As insight awareness increases, you will begin to recognize when someone else’s contract is playing out in front of you. The natural temptation is to share your insight. If the timing and presentation are right, wonderful transformations can occur for the afflicted. If the timing or presentation is wrong, however, then anger, rejection, deceit or a host of other shadow personality type responses may occur.
This can be quite humbling. While it does offer opportunity to learn, pain or suffrage for both parties can be avoided by remembering that each person’s contract with the Divine is uniquely theirs. It is not appropriate for any of us to pass judgment on another person’s contract, or how it is played out. In such an instance, rather then forcing your internal will upon the situation, choosing another response, such as prayer, empathy, or simply moving on, can be more appropriate.
Step Two: The Houses
Archetypes, which were reviewed in Part 2 are the motivating components of personality. While these are useful tools that help establish individual identity, knowing when these traits are more likely to express themselves is also important. The scenarios in which an archetype is likely to express itself can be categorized into areas of relevance called Houses (21,21).
Listed in order, from one to twelve, the houses include:
- Persona: Your presentation to the external world; how you conduct yourself with others
- Personal Ownership: Life values; your presentation to your internal world; spiritual values
- Communication: Motivation; self-expression and sibling relationships
- Home: Your relationship to family roots and where you either have or currently reside; completion of childhood unfinished business
- Creativity and Good Fortune: Creative expression, sexuality, love, and abundance; not having to “do” something for personal validation
- Work & Health: Balance between health needs, occupation and the main work of your life; the healthy or unhealthy views you hold about life and other people
- Partnerships: Marriage and relationships
- Legal and Financial: Dealings with money, inheritance and sexuality
- Spirituality and Wisdom: Spirituality, religion, travel and wisdom
- Highest Potential: What motivates you to be all that you can be
- Relationship to the World: Your viewpoint about life in general and your personal sense of power within it
- Instinct: Intuition, unconscious thought, relationship to the collective soul, synchronicity
As you try to gain insight into how your contract is played out, examine under what settings (or houses) your greatest challenge seems to reoccur. Next, identify which archetype has greatest influence, or expression, within an individual house. While this can be a difficult task to accomplish, upon succeeding with it the manner in which your contract plays itself out will have greater clarity.. For more on Houses use this link.
Step Three: Traumatic Incident Reduction
After identifying your archetypes, the Challenge & Choice Home Tutorial asks that you create a time line of personal events that you carry in order to identify which theme path you are living. These events also shape how you view yourself. Oftentimes that view is distorted from what really happened, or from how others interpreted the same events.
Traumatic Incident Reduction (TIR) is a method that helps unleash your perceptions of those events and hence allows you to look at what actually happened from a different perspective (23,24). This can be particularly useful when trying to examine a chronic emotion that contains negative feelings or is a power drain to you.
The basics of the technique include
- ground yourself in the present moment
- identify the incident
- tell what happened
- retell what happened until full recall of the incident is achieved and it no longer changes form one recall to the next
- look for changes in how you relate to the event.
It can be astonishing how your perception can change with this technique. The coward can become the courageous, the villain the hero or the mystic the monk. Identify an event that holds power over you. Use the steps of TIR until you are satisfied that the event no longer confines you. Of course, only you will be able to tell whether you have completed the transformation.
Step Four: A Full And Happy Life
In summary, the Challenge and Choice program is designed to help people gain awareness into life situations that require them to take a stand and then asks if that stand has meaning. The underlying premise is that as long as learning (in the form of internal will) occurs then enrichment will follow. A stand that has no meaning (or is arbitrary) will only lead to suffrage with no purpose.
It turns out that personality type drives when to take a stand and how to formulate responsible choice. In addition, by examining which emotional referral zones are most troublesome people can gain insight into those issues that are most challenging. Listening to your body is a powerful tool in determining which choices will be healthy or not.
It can be quite helpful to separate yourself from the actual event at hand. Rise above the situation and ask if it is always the same type of situation that presents a challenge. Once you have discovered what the bigger, reoccurring circumstance is a greater understanding of life’s purpose can become evident. Most often that purpose brings meaning to all of the events that we carry with us.
When confronted with a challenge that appears too big, remember to utilize the tools provided within Challenge and Choice. Recall that while there is little to be gained by taking an arbitrary stand, there is much to be gained by exercising internal will. Sharing, without learning, does not promote internal will. Hence the myth that sharing promotes receiving is revealed. When sharing leads to a personal challenge keep in mind that if the stand you take promotes learning then you have also enhanced the opportunity to receive.
Know that it is the quality and quantity of energy put into learning that develops internal will. That energy is what determines how much reward, if any, will be forthcoming. Don’t be too hard on yourself and keep aware of the difference between psychological time and clock time. If the task is too daunting, agree to participate to the degree that you can. Remember that exercising responsible choice at any level can lead to a full and happy life, ripe with experiences.