Archive for category: Self-Acceptance

Are You Ready For The Next Level Of Healing?

21 Oct
October 21, 2015

Next Level of Healing

I recently read a critical review about my book Embrace The Unlovable, by Elizabelth Galen, Ph.D.  As a visionary writer who frequently pushes the envelope to invite new approaches and perspectives to healing and personal growth, I expect to receive criticisms from traditional sectors of these fields as part and parcel of sharing my views with the world.

This particular critical piece, however, presented some important examples of the very limitations of what is available in mainstream treatment that I highlighted in my book. Therefore, I decided it would be an excellent source for me to use as a tool to reinforce some of my key messages – so that we can go beyond the limits of what we’re told is possible in healing from shame and other deep emotional wounds.

...keep reading

Book Review: Tiny Buddha’s Guide To Loving Yourself

18 Sep
September 18, 2013

Tiny Buddha's Guide To Loving Yourself by Lori Deschene, Conari Press

I mentioned in my previous post that there is a lack of resources that can truly guide us to practice self-love.  Perhaps you too have been hoping that a practical and inspiring guide on the subject of self-love would be available.  If so, Lori Deschene’s new book Tiny Buddha’s Guide To Loving Yourself should come as good news.

This book is a gem.  The author, who is the founder of Tiny Buddha (one of the most popular personal development sites on the internet), has compiled 40 inspiring and touching personal stories shared by contributors to the Tiny Buddha blog.  I am one of the contributors (read my post Are You Running Away From Yourself?).

...keep reading

How To Let Go Of Being Wronged – Finally

14 Mar
March 14, 2013

Learning forgiveness and letting go of beingg wronged with Amyra Mah
People sometimes ask me, “What is the deepest, most important healing that must occur for me to break through my blocks?”  For the serious seeker, one of the most powerful places to go in your healing is where you still hold resentment towards those who did you wrong.

I’m not talking about recent events but the most highly-charged incident in your earliest memory about being wronged.  This is not a place that most people would deliberately choose to go unless it becomes utterly clear to them that certain patterns that bring unhappiness and that keep unfolding in their lives have something to do with the hurts they still carry from this event.

...keep reading

The Twisted Side Of Things

29 Nov
November 29, 2010

 The Evil Doctor Heiter Cartoon Illustration
About two months ago, I was sitting in a therapy group facilitated by my co-workers. The group explored the theme of self-image and in an exercise clients were asked to write down a list of their strongest attributes. I decided to join in and write my list. One of my co-workers chuckled when he saw my list – in particular at the word ‘twisted’ which I had included as one of my attributes. He and another co-worker, both often subjected to my twisted taste in entertainment and sense of humour, concurred that twisted I am indeed. The clients, who became intrigued by this seemingly dark attribute which I’d so openly declared as an aspect of me, wanted to know more. My colleagues wanted me to explain myself, to reveal the deeper layers of my psyche….

...keep reading

“Accept The Unacceptable”

12 Apr
April 12, 2010

Accept the Unacceptable - Amyra Mah, Unusual Wisdom
I was watching an animated movie about Doctor Strange, the Marvel Comics creation.  It was my first introduction to the character and I was fascinated by the world of sorcery portrayed in the story.  The movie depicts how Dr Stephen Strange, a successful surgeon, who after injuring his hands in an accident finds his way to a monastery in Tibet where he is trained by The Ancient One to be a powerful sorcerer.  Lots of spiritual lessons reflected in the movie, especially in the doctor’s early training when he has to move past the pain of his loss, guilt and shame to recover a sense of purpose in his life.

...keep reading

Why People Are Driven To Destroy Themselves

18 Mar
March 18, 2010

Trees with Purple Flowers, Kanchanaburi, Thailand
One of the themes that often come up when dealing with addictions is the tendency for self-destruction – when the drive to use drugs, alcohol or other compulsive activities renders a person unable to stop that behaviour but to spiral faster and faster into destroying himself.  Why do some people seem to have this need to destroy themselves?  What can they do to break out of this obsessive drive that seems to grip them so powerfully?

Whether a person is dealing with an obsession with drugs, alcohol, money, sex or food, the nature of this obsession is the same.  The greed for more (in quantity, frequency and intensity) escalates as the person breaks down more and more boundaries that have previously defined what kept him safe.  These boundaries may relate to the physical body (what is and isn’t acceptable for what we do to our body), social circle (who is and isn’t appropriate for us to hang out with), our moral codes (what behaviours we will and won’t accept from ourselves), and our dignity (what we will and won’t tolerate from others).  Deep in the throes of addiction, gripped by obsession, we cross that line again and again, pushing our boundaries further and further away from us.

...keep reading

A Tribute To Personal Freedom

23 Oct
October 23, 2009

In my work as well as my personal growth, I often examine how our fears entrap us in a false sense of imprisonment.  We fear expressing ourselves, making courageous decisions, saying no to those who’re abusive to us, standing up for ourselves.… because we might leave ourselves exposed to judgements and rejection.  The cost of asserting ourselves and exercising our freedom is the shame and embarassment of being shown that what we do is not acceptable to others.

What is it about being accepted by others that make it such a powerful drive that stop us from living a happy life?  Reading this, it may sound ridiculous that we short-change ourselves so readily to gain the approval of others, yet it happens more often than we’re comfortable admitting to.  This feared unacceptability can come in various forms – e.g. being told we’re not good enough, being persecuted, leaving someone unhappy.

...keep reading

Being Honest About Your True Feelings

20 May
May 20, 2009

The Bangkok Post featured a two-page story about our centre last weekend.  In the interview with me, the first question I was asked was, “What’s it like to work with VIPs and stars?”  I was rather disappointed as I was hoping that the writer would want to know more about the therapeutic process for our clients.  Although I managed to bridge the question to some of what I’d wanted to convey, I was left feeling that I would have liked to be able to share more of what the internal processes entail in the road to recovery and self-growth.

...keep reading

Making Meaning Out Of Life

17 Jan
January 17, 2009

Clean Beach in Hua Hin, ThailandI feel wonderful today.  Fifteen years ago, I wouldn’t have imagined myself saying this on the day I turn 40.  Growing old was just one of the many fears I struggled with, and my age-obsessed self then could not see any reason to go on existing beyond the age of 29.  I remember cringing at every birthday, feeling myself sapped of life, as if another building block to the structure that held me together was being pulled out.  Now I know that it was an illusion maintained by a practice of constantly looking out for bad things.

...keep reading

The Transformational Effects Of Remorse

28 Dec
December 28, 2008

In my work as an addiction counsellor, I often encounter issues of shame behind substance abuse.  The influence of shame on self-destructive habits looks something like this:

A person grew up with a belief that he is unworthy, damaged or a bad person.  He struggles with the pain and fear generated by this underlying belief and attempts to invalidate the belief through his actions and behaviours.  At the same time, because he has not reconciled his fear of this belief, he tends to perpetuate acts that substantiate the belief.

...keep reading