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Healing and growth

Healing and growth are closely associated. Both involve themes of identity, wholeness, and spirituality. They are intensely personal processes which turn on experience, and the narrative we use in remembering and explaining events in our lives, particularly those events which are distressing or painful.

They are also constant processes which never really end. I have linked healing and growth because healing naturally involves spiritual growth. After all, if somebody has been healed but hasn’t grown through the process, can we really say they are healed?

Trigger points

The impetus for engaging in healing is often a crisis such as an illness or an accident. In therapy, the move to seek help can be triggered by an existential crisis, an emotional difficulty or a struggling relationship. In all cases healing and growth will derive from how the person being treated approaches the process, as well as the treatment itself and the methodology. It is a collaborative process.

Treatment may involve an external agency such as medicine, psychology or religion, an internal one based on volition and attitude, or both. In all cases accepting treatment doesn’t necessarily mean engaging in healing.

One’s attitude and beliefs play a large part in both progress and eventual outcome. By the way, this doesn’t mean that the ‘right’ attitude equals the ‘right’ outcome (people can get into all sorts of debates about choice, responsibility and even blame when attitude is mentioned).

Success is never guaranteed. Healing means living with an attitude of openness to the idea that there is always better and that growth and change don’t have an end point.

So healing and growth relate to your relationship with yourself, with others, with your environment and even the universe. Just like the universe, we are constantly expanding and evolving. But only if you are open to it.

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