07 Aug [VIDEO] What is Jungian Coaching?
Developed by Robert Maldonado, Ph.D., Jungian Coaching is a psychology-based coaching system that is based on Jungian Psychology and Eastern Wisdom. Basic life coach training will help build up your ego and give you action steps toward your goals but Jungian Life Coaching is much more profound which leads you to become your true self. This coaching model is not therapy and does not involve healing, it sees the client as pure potential – a positive depth psychology. If you feel you want a deeper training in life coaching, explore the Academy of Jungian Positive Psychology where we train only a small number of students each year in this unique system. Learn: Working with the Persona/Shadow Jungian Dream Interpretation Science of the Psyche depth psychology life coaching skills visualization Find out more and apply for a free consultation at http://JungianLifeCoach.com
Debi: Hi. I’m interviewing Dr. Rob Maldonado. This is Debi Maldonado behind the scenes. We wanted to talk about the Jungian Positive Psychology Academy that we created. I wanted to ask you some questions about the coaching model and Jungian coaching.
Rob: Oh, boy. Yes, that’s a deep question which is my favorite. From very early on, when I read Carl Jung, I had a vision of bringing this Psychology to the world and making it available to everyone, but not in the typical kind of a clinical setting of, “There’s something wrong with you or you’re depressed, you’re anxious. Let’s work on this.” I wanted to give people the knowledge that’s available in Jungian Psychology so that they can use in their everyday lives.
Yes, well, the first part of your question, definitely, if you think about how we live in the modern world, there are no more opportunities for people to be initiated into the mysteries of life, into the beauty and depth of the psyche dreaming use of the-
Debi: The creativity.
Rob: Yes, the source of creativity, the source of life itself. There’s very little mystery. Every book, everyone now lives on the surface on screens and just kind of.
Debi: Materialistic almost. Said everything is out there.
Rob: Yes. There’s nothing wrong with those things but we’re missing the other half of life, which is that initiation into the psyche. If you look at what was going on 100 years ago with Jung and Freud. They were really discovering all these things about the mind and the psyche. A hundred years of experience is available to us but we’re not using any of that knowledge. Most of the systems that we see out there, they’re using pop Psychology, if at all. Sometimes not even that, they’re simply going on a few key ideas or terminologies or maybe a technique that they found that people enjoy and help people but that’s not really what I’m talking.
The main difference is that we don’t see the individual is broken in any way.
Debi: So when you were therapists, you in the therapy, doing therapy on people-
Rob: That was the entry point, basically, that there was something going on with you that was not working for you. Something that went amiss, either a trauma, psychological breakdown. Something went wrong that needed fixing. The coaching model, the way we apply it, it goes into that same depth of understanding your psyche and your history and your current life situation but without the idea of brokenness.
Yes, the idea really comes from Eastern philosophy. If you consider that the true self, the way it defines an Eastern philosophy is that it, it is the core of our being, who we already are. That self cannot be damaged in any way. We start from that premise. We’re on the right track already. Instead of circling around to try to fix some external aspect of our lives or some part of our memory or ego, we start with the ultimate premise that we are the true selves already and that there’s nothing wrong with us.
Now having said that, it doesn’t mean we don’t pay attention to our past and to difficult emotions that arise in our psyche. On the contrary, we use those things to really see that there is nothing wrong with us. We don’t focus on them exclusively and we don’t consider the individual to be damaged goods by any stretch of the imagination. We start with that radical premise that everyone is whole already.
Yes, he’s certainly considered the goal of his therapy and his psychology to be that wholeness. The individual to reach a state of wholeness, whether they weren’t divided against themselves.
In the 100 years since Jung was developing these ideas, we’ve learned a lot more about Eastern philosophy. We know more about the mind through Neuroscience as well. Now, it makes more sense that there is really nothing wrong with us. The assumption that there’s something wrong with us is really what keeps people stuck most of the time. It’s a very different perspective and a very different way of approaching what most people would call problems or traumas or difficult situations.
For us, those things are really the initiation into that deeper realm of the psyche. If you think in stages, or if you think of the ego and personality as the initial stage of our life, we develop that personality and the ego. It’s really our purpose, in the beginning, to develop a strong ego and a strong sense ourselves as personality. Yes, it gets us through that initial stage from birth to early adulthood.
Later on though, we become disillusioned with that personality because it doesn’t go deep enough. Again, it’s really a reaction to your external social environment. It doesn’t really touch upon the real questions of life. Jung saw that around midlife, so midlife really begins maybe around 30-35. People started to individuate, meaning they started asking questions about what is the real meaning of my life? That process now is what we are talking about. Becoming who you really meant to be, not just your initial reaction and adaptation to life.
What happens is it’s a transformation of the whole psyche of the individual. It rearranges itself to where you’re no longer focused on the external and you’re no longer just believing that you’re the uniform that you’ve been playing or the role that you’ve been playing in life. You get a deeper sense of your life and you become rooted in life and your psyche in a deeper way.
If you think about that initial reaction to life and building out the persona of the ego, it is very much a conditioned response. Meaning that we’re shaped by the forces that are external to us. Through individuation, through becoming or coming in touch with your deeper self, you start to gain freedom as to who you really are and who you want to be. Instead of being conditioned by the external forces, you start to make real choices in your life.
I think everyone has the potential but there are people that are ready for the work. You do have to be ready for this kind of work. Certainly, that phase of life where we start to ask the question, is that all there is? What is the true meaning of my life? What am I meant to be doing here? Is there a higher purpose for me? It’s not necessarily that you’re going to find very concrete answers to those questions. But the search itself is that initiation into what you call the symbolic life.
You start to understand your life in a deeper way. Everyone reaches that point at some point in their life. In a sense, we’re always asking those questions. We’re always looking for meaning as human beings but the process that we take people through in our coaching model expedites the individuation process. It guides you to really search in a meaningful way to where you’re able to do it in a year or two and make those big transformations in your life. That might otherwise take decades or maybe never come if you don’t do the work.
I think it’s very practical in the sense, we all experience triggers in our life. We all have to deal with emotions. That’s really the number one approach to the work that we teach our clients is, how do I deal with difficult situations in my life? People that trigger me. Emotions that are difficult to manage. How do I work with those things?
The second one is dreams. Very few of us are connected to our dream world anymore. Getting back in touch with the dream world is one of the greatest benefits you can do for your self-actualizing because it puts you in touch directly with the unconscious. Not the unconscious, as a lot of people, understand it as a kind of programming that goes into our life, but the creative aspect of the unconscious. It’s a living vital force of the psyche that wants to participate in our lives. Dreams is one of the ways to participative, gives us messages directly from the unconscious.
The third one is visualization, but it’s more than, let’s say, positive affirmation or thinking, visualizing what you want to create. Those things, although it includes that. We see it as the ability to talk back to that creative aspect, to that deeper self in us. So we develop a two-way communication between the creative unconscious, which is giving us messages through dreams and our conscious mind, which is able to talk back to the creative mind through visualization, through meditation, through what we call, meta-consciousness work.
It’s very individualized so it prepares people for their lives. Whatever they’re up to and whatever inspiration comes out through the process, it prepares them for that. It gives them the emotional, psychological energy to pursue those dreams and visions.
Everyone has a unique purpose in this life. People are often surprised by what the process leads them to. Often, there are things that they’ve forgotten. Maybe they started off dreaming of doing these things and they kind of dropped them along the way. Now, they resurface, all these years, but in a more mature and in a more practical way. Often, it just comes out of the blue that they’re meant to be doing something completely different in what they’ve been doing or they thought they should be doing.
There’s a couple of answers to that. One, is we don’t want to keep the process to ourselves. This is meant to be shared with the world. You and I cannot do this work alone. We need to train others so that we can reach as many people as we can. That’s one of the great side benefits that we do get to influence the personal development field in a positive way hopefully. Introduce new concepts, raise the bar like you said.
Debi: Thank you, Rob, for answering these questions. They were very insightful and informational. I hope everyone is inspired to explore the Jungian coaching.
Rob: My pleasure.