One of my favorite quotes by the famous Swiss psychiatrist and psychoanalyst is: "There is no coming to consciousness without pain. People will do anything, no matter how absurd, in order to avoid facing their own Soul. One does not become enlightened by imagining figures of light, but by making the darkness conscious".
Here is the essence of counseling. All the tools we use to avoid the pain, drugs, alcohol, exercise, eating, gambling, shopping, only delay our dealing with and facing the pain that most people have inside them.
The pain is often from difficult childhoods, even if our parents did the very best they could. Most people have suffered what are known as ACE's or Adverse Childhood Experiences. These can range from abuse and neglect to physical, emotional or sexual harm. Children with parents with mental illness often suffer deeply and often have no outlet to express their pain. With no outlet, the pain will often get buried and what emerges are behaviors that tend to be problematic for the person expressing them or the people they are in relationship with.
This is the Darkness that Jung speaks about in his famous quote. The darkness gets hidden away in the heart and soul of the person who experienced the pain and typically comes out in fairly unproductive ways. People may feel deep grief, anxiety, have anger problems or find they just disconnect from those whom they want to be closest.
Counseling has a profound impact on this Darkness that Jung describes. When we bring Light to any dark area, the darkness cannot hold. That space cannot help but be turned to light. When we come directly in contact with our own deep truth from a place of compassion and love, the darkness is banished and what remains may be painful, but the conscious pain is a relief after running from the darkness. Finding a compassionate therapist who can support you on this journey effectively helps to neutralize the pain the darkness is causing by both understanding it and finding compassion for how this anchored into your body, mind and soul.
When we are feeling unwell for a few days, we go to the physicians office. Maybe it's not our favorite thing to do, but we tend to have gratitude for the tools they have to bring wellness back into our lives. A therapist can also bring the Light back into your life with the tools at their disposal. Don't spend one more moment in emotional pain before reaching out to someone who can support you on the quest to internal well-being.