Category Archives: Blog
During times of hardship, what can we possibly do? – Recently I incidentally fell on an important book on my bookshelf by Carl Jung “The Undiscovered Self”. The psychiatrist, Carl Jung, is in this book urging us individually to understand the duality of our nature, our capacity for good as well as evil. Jung meant that we by understanding the threat from the destructive aspects of the human psyche would be better to cope with potential threats. He even affirmed that the survival of our civilization might depend on our ability as individuals to get to know ourselves. Jung argues that exploring our own souls should throw some light on the slumbering powers in the psyche. Delt with consciously he says these helpful forces and ideas over and over have enabled people to find the right way through darkness and danger.
When I flipped through the pages of this precious book with so many insights it struck me, how it can be benefitting and bringing hope during times of hardship to search and get inspired by great pieces of literature and sciences not only to understand our contemporary problems but also personally to become more resilient and better problem solvers. As a psychologist working to help people realizing and live their inner positive and loving potentials, this book brings me immediate happiness.
During the present period in history characterized by a threatened climate, wars, ongoing inequality and poverty problems, pandemics and having depression and anxiety playing an unfortunate large role, it is likely to ask oneself the question: “What can we do during this difficult time?” Knowing that answering the question is not simple and furthermore there is not just one single answer, I do however like to share a part of the last chapter from my book “Love is Possible – from separation to connectedness”. The book is my response to clients’ requests for readable and concise everyday support to love and connection. It gives a broader understanding of the work to reach our inner great potentials, which might not only become possible tools to save our marriages but also like Jung states help us find the possible right way through darkness and danger.
THERE IS HOPE
For a long time there was something I could not understand. – I had puzzled when I had seen people’s yearning lead to so much activity and continued busy effort on the one hand, and the amount of human suffering, including painful divorces, on the other. Why is there still so much pain when we are now working so hard to avoid getting divorced, – and just living the happiness. It has puzzled me. Right until I began to see that it was not love that was lacking or the good will, but just that without knowing, we are unconsciously identifying with our egos and letting them control us.
Not only do our relationships suffer. So many other conditions in the world are critical right now. There are wars, poverty, inequality problems, and imbalances in the financial systems and, not least, a threatened climate. Serious problems threaten our existence here on earth. The world is threatened due to lack of love in the controlling of it.
With this potential loving in our consciousness lying ready, we are obviously not let down, but equipped by nature with possibilities for the solution of the problems. What is necessary now is that we work at making the obstacles conscious for ultimately our own survival.
Conscious about our ego’s need to bring separation and destruction, we are better able to be co-creators of positive connections and solutions in the big world around us.
There is definitely hope for us humans in this world!
From my book “Love is Possible – from separation to connectedness”.
You can buy it at Amazon.
The number one tool is to choose our hearth over our fear-based ego. Our hearts are ready every second to comfort us and give us love..
Keep in close contact and connection with family and friends. Close relationships are one of the most important tools for happiness.
Choose to be grateful, – maybe to the many people risking their health to help us all during these very demanding weeks.
Give whenever you have the chance, it is healthy not only psychologically also physically.
Enjoy some kind of physical activity, yoga, walking, running. Maybe start your day doing The Five Tibetan Rites; a Tibetan form of yoga, which I personally can recommend for both physical and psychological well-being. An easy way to get started is just to use Google, read about it and watch a video.
Get some fresh air every day.
Meditation. I can recommend using A Course in Miracles, which is an excellent psychological and spiritual self studying system including meditation, I can also recommend The Heartfulness Way, which includes a cleaning tool.
Maybe take some Bach flower remedies, if these are accessible for you. Here I can recommend mixing the Rescue Remedy and White Chestnut. It is calming (Rescue) and relaxes your mind (White Chestnut).
All these different tools are good to help getting you grounded in your heart. – We need our hearts right now, not only for being happy also to be connected with each other. During a time of social distancing it is important to remember that in our hearts there is no distance at all between us.
Also do not forget to eat well and definitely not check the news at your phone as the first thing in the morning and the last thing you do at night! Very important: Seek professional help if you
I wish you may stay safe and be happy! – With love, Annette.
PS. Seek professional help whenever you need it!
A strong belief in human goodwill and unutilized human potentials brought me seven years ago to see an opportunity for using the Internet for global person-to-person giving and we started to create the social site CommonCollection, which I honestly think is a frame of hope.
One afternoon in 2007 in J.F. Kennedy Airport in New York I was waiting along with one of our 4 children, 13 year old Elisabeth, for our flight back to Copenhagen. We had enjoyed ourselves in the city, enjoyed its atmosphere and diversity. I had been meeting with people aiming to make improved medical and possibly psychological care available for everyone. As always after a few days in New York I felt inspired and full of hope. I bought myself a magazine, where I read about two journalists from respectively Newsweek and Washington Post, who had created a blog, where people could share and debate about issues that really mattered to them. The blog quickly became a great success with many viewers. This article together with another in the magazine about many people’s desires to volunteer became the beginning of CommonCollection. It was clear to me that we are many people, who yearn for unity with each other by sharing deep important issues and tasks. On the plane home I wrote the following:
The site is a way of satisfying the growing amount of people yearning for unity and for taking care of the planet. People who want a way of living on the planet that is socially aware and ecologically conscious.
The site helps people to connect in a deeper way and communicate and act accordingly about things that really matters to them.
It is a widespread perception that there is a need for improvement of social, human and environmental conditions. There are people suffering from poverty, inequality problems, wars, natural disasters, imbalances in financial systems and not least an endangered climate. Serious problems threaten our existence on the planet. Depression is the most comprehensive psychological problem in the western world of our time. Many people are tired, sad and exhausted.
Fundamentally is the realization of needs and unutilized potentials together with the growing amount of people yearning for unity and taking care of the planet strong parameters for taking advantage of new technology in the development of CommonCollection.
There is so much untapped human potential! CommonCollection makes it possible to utilize this untapped human potential and help people.
In reality we are not separated from the love and joy in us, and in reality there is no separation between us humans. However, we are all equipped with an ego, which constantly and solidly convinces us of the opposite.
When we, as individuals, are what we are, we feel the peace and joy. When our relationships are what they are, they are connected and happy. As individuals and as couples, the truth is that when we are what we are, we are happy. Fine states of joyful affinity and peace are our individual and our relationships’ real identity. What they really are!
This requires that we become aware of what blocks us from our true essence; that we learn to not let our egos obstruct the way. Our egos, which are fundamentally the experience of being separated from our underlying loving Selves, and which we unfortunately almost predominantly identify with in terms of consciousness. True, our egos can seem strong and able to convince us of a great deal; but we must dare to put ourselves above this side of ourselves, dare to continue wanting to be happy, dare to continue to hope, dare to demand the joy that is our rightful property, and which can enrich us not just by having connected relationships, but also by our winning and becoming ourselves.
We must let our sense remind us of this and choose the love and the peace in us. I remember one late night when my husband and I, after persistent and many attempts at reaching agreement and connection with each other, which took place under such exhaustion caused by too many activities that was so pervasive and total, that the feeling of disintegration was close, to feel this simplicity in reaching each other as opposed to the totally impossible aspects of the situation. My husband and I were pressured in our efforts to do everything well. We were pushed into a corner where only our egos seemed to be heard. On that night we felt completely inadequate on all areas of life and the bitterest part of the experience of unsuccessfulness was the feeling of separation between us and not feeling loved by the other. Being stuck in the situation and not even being able to see that we found ourselves in a state where our egos constantly played with us in a mean game of turning all our loving efforts in our daily lives to selfish, meaningless intentions. Completely exhausted in the situation, I catch myself in a moment and think something in the direction of that I now just “want to be together with my husband”. The effect comes immediately. – I see him as he is, battling exhaustion, doing the best he can right now. He is fighting on the wrong team (that is, the ego’s team) in a desperate cry to reach the love; an impossible and heart-rending shame for him when now, in reality, he is everything he has yearned to be. A similar compassion spreads through me in relation to myself. I become able to literally jump over the fence that prevents our happiness. The night ends full of joy with a feeling of having won everything that is worth winning.
Moments of conscious intimacy under such scenarios between us can tear us away from identifying with our egos’ consciousness. Actually, I believe that precisely this and similar experiences of the miracles of love are what convinces me in my efforts in life.
Experiencing affinity and love in your relationship can be experienced as something of the most complex. In reality it’s simple! It comes by itself, when we are able to choose it!
Through my relationship I have been able to get closer to that which is me; to being me. To create intimacy in my relationship through how we, my husband and I together, try to live life so we both experience it in united joy, has been a unique tool to reach what I yearn for to live every second. This puts me in the state I love, where I am just happy without the big gestures, where I feel as if something special has happened, the big lottery draw has just come up with my number.
When we make mistakes in our marriages or in life in general, we need to be looked at with compassion and as loving people, whilst we are reminded that we make mistakes, which are not from the love in us, but from our insecure, frightened egos.
When things get really tough in a relationship, that which can help us carry on; that is in us. If we are able to find just a little willingness to open ourselves to another way of seeing our situation, we will feel better, also when the separation feels infinitely large and the anger is making us let go of the last power of affinity in us. When we are willing to put aside the fear, we are in the love. It is difficult to surrender and say: ”Okay, I want this in another way.” Our ego tugs and tears in us and tells us that we should leave well alone. Even a long time after I had discovered that that was what I had to do, I now and then neglected to give in to my inner truth and waded on in unhappiness. I could almost feel the temptation to remain in the pain.
Every moment we have the possibility of peace. Every moment we have that option together, which is at the root of happiness. We can choose whether we want to subject ourselves to the loving energy in ourselves or go down the road of fear, anger and depression. In reality, this choice is the all-important one. In our deep moments with ourselves we know that choosing the love in life is what is true. We can be joyful, liberated and light without any sense of guilt and bitterness; simply happy and grateful because the potential for this state is inside us – and we know that somewhere inside us. The difficult part is to give in and let no obstacles come in the way of happiness and who we are. Opting out of separation and the accompanying unhappiness is connected joy. Everything we need in relation to being happy in our relationships is instantly present and flowing to meet us from our inner Selves.
If we are not happy, it is because we do not use our full internal potential.
The sun shines in us. We must demand of ourselves to feel its lovely, warm rays and experience the light changing the world, we look at. We need its power and illumination. We also have the right to the sun. The sun must fill us up, beautify the world we look at and shine on our path, so we do not get lost. The same actually applies to the joy and the love in us. We need it to fill us up, to beautify the world we see and to illuminate our path, so we do not get lost in the darkness of separation. When we are able to live our days based on our loving Self, we become warm and we are happy.
No doubt there are many of you, who are reading this, who either know yourselves, that it is true, because you make use of this yourself, or also hope that it is true. We have to stop fleeing from the truth about ourselves. We must choose to be the valuable and loving humans, we really are.
A relationship lived from our underlying fundamental essence will be connected and happy. If we dare to live, based on who we are within, love and peace between us in our relationships will be inevitable. Love is our relationships’ natural state!!
– From my book: Love is Possible – from separation to connectedness.
In my post “Giving might change the world” I wrote that new science is directly connecting pro-social and giving activities with finding meaning in life, happiness and health.
Here I like to share the opportunity to be inspired by attached talk by Viktor Frankl, 1905-1997, who survived as the only one from his family staying in World War II’s camps.
Viktor Frankl, professor of neurology and psychiatry says in his book “Psychology and Existence”, that “…. MAN ́S PRINCIPAL MOTIVATION IS THE WILL TO MEANING. It is pulling us, it is from the Self, and it is meeting the existence. If it was only by the ego, a projection of wishful thinking, it would immediately lose its demanding and challenging nature. Frankl understood miserable human conditions as absence of meaning, and he predicted it as the major problem of mankind around the millennium. Frankl says, that between stimulus and response in us humans there is room, where we have the possibility to choose, what he believes is important in people ́s lives; to find meaning.
When we are able to see the innocence and the love in each other, we connect to the same innocence and love in ourselves!
The internet is a great possibility of sharing the goodness in people!
Today the front page headline of the Danish newspaper Jyllandsposten is: ”Modern begging is taking place on social media.” (See original Danish version at Jyllands-posten.dk). Basic needs as food and clothing have started to be asked for online. – What a great possibility to the receiver as well as the giver!
Resent science connects pro-social and giving activities with happiness and health, and tells that there appears to be a fundamental human drive toward helping others, which is built into the human brain in a basic biological system.(The Hidden Gifts of Helping. Stephen G. Post. 2011). PHYSICALLY, MENTALLY, EMOTIONALLY PEOPLE BENEFIT GREATLY FROM THE POSITIVE EMOTIONS THAT ARISE THROUGH THE SIMPLE ACT OF GIVING. Physically frequent volunteering has been scientifically linked to feeling healthier and to longevity. Mentally and emotionally studies have shown significant positive impact on lowered stress levels, sense of well-being and purpose in life.
Clay Shirky is lecturer in social media, theory and practice at the New York University. He argues that with the capabilities of the Internet further liberation is created that enables significant possibilities and behavioral change. Shirky says, that the Internet has liberated existing tendencies and motives. The Internet has through unlimited possibilities for free of cost reproductions of all digital elements for anyone, who has a computer, removed old barriers to universal participation and revealed that people rather want to be co-creators and activity sharing beings than passive consumers of what a few think they should be watching. Fewer young people with access to interactive media are watching television. The opportunities to comment, share, label, discuss with others in the world are favored. He claims, that the Internet has shown that PEOPLE ARE MORE CREATIVE AND GENEROUS THAN WE EVER IMAGINED, AND THAT PEOPLE LIKE TO SPEND AL THEIR FREE TIME WITHOUT FINANCIAL REWARDS ON THE INTERNET IN ORDER TO FIND AN OUTLET FOR A BASIC HUMAN URGE TO CREATIVE EXPRESSION AND CONNECTEDNESS. (See Information 2/8-10 and C. Shirky. Cognitive Surplus, Creativity and Generosity in a Connected Age. 2010).
New science is connecting pro-social and giving activities with finding meaning in life, happiness and health. Accordingly giving to others has proven to have an emotionally, mentally and physically healing effect on the giver. Experience show that people like to act creatively and generously and to spend al their free time without financial rewards on the Internet in order to find an outlet for a basic human urge to creative expression and connectedness. With existing wars, inequality problems, poverty, imbalances in the financial systems, an endangered climate and depression as today’s most important psychological problem it is essential to support giving, sharing and connection between people and projects.
The German social psychologist and psychoanalyst Erich Fromm 1900-1980, says that by giving one reinforces the living in oneself. When one is giving, one can not avoid calling something alive in the receiver, which works back at oneself. When one is truly giving, one can not fail to receive, what is given. Giving implies that one also makes the other person a giver, and they both take part in the joy of what they have called to life. (I. Yalom. Existential Psychotherapy. 2005. p. 392). GIVING TO OTHERS IS JOYOUS AND IS TAPPING OF UNUTILIZED HUMAN POTENTIAL; as Fromm says, giving brings the intended in both the giver as well as the receiver.
The internet is a great possibility of sharing the goodness in people and might become the FRAME OF HOPE where needs and unutilized potentials meet.