Who am I? What do I want in life? What should I choose? Personal growth! In order to answer some of these questions one needs to be in contact with themselves. In this sense contact refers to the boundary between what is me and not me. Being in contact happens through awareness. When I am aware I have joined with myself and made contact with how I am thinking, feeling, judging, sensing or being in this moment. Through aware contact one can then meet the world outside themselves nourishingly. To do this each of us needs some psychological space within which we are our own masters, in order to decide what we let in and what we let go of. That is, your own personal boundary, your choice. Contact involves not only the sense of oneself but also the sense of whatever presents itself at your boundary.
When we come into contact with what is foreign to us our ego starts to function in order to determine the boundary between the personal and impersonal. If we are not aware of ourselves and instead react predictably we may be isolating ourselves from an environment that could foster a new way of being, that is exciting, lively and gratifying. Being in contact with oneself is the lifeblood of growth, the means of expanding your boundaries into union or closing your boundaries into separation, depending on what you feel in the moment is required.
Thus, personal growth is the by product of aware contacting, the shaping of ones’ life through their personal boundary brings about change. Action then becomes a choice not a habitual reaction and each new and unfamiliar action bears a seed of a new internal knowing, that stretches your boundaries and expands your limiting self narrative. You get to meet yourself in a new way!
Expanding boundaries and meeting yourself in a new way more often than not is more frightening than what we may first think. It feels risky as we leave behind our old familiar behaviour and try out something new. When we become used to seeing ourselves in a certain way that is predictable albeit unsatisfying, we can resist the unfamiliar due to fear of the unknown. We often find we have a part that yearns for change and another that resists change, a stubborn barrier to the new behaviour. We then have an internal conflict which can leave us feeling paralysed and stuck as the two opposing forces within us fight it out. This is where support is key, the self support of awareness, kindness, understanding, patience and the ability to self soothe when the fear of the unknown ensues. And, the support from others we trust. With support we can bring the opposing internal forces into new contact with each other. It is not about getting rid of the stuck part of yourself to allow the new. It is about making friends with each part in order to understand what holds you back and what that part needs in order to allow your boundary to expand and for personal growth to become a reality.
There is no limit to personal growth and expanding our sense of self. We are all limitless selves waiting to be expressed! As Neale Donald Walsch said “life begins at the end of our comfort zone.”