The unconscious. Full of wisdom, unlived potential and scars of the past. C.G. Jung believed that the unconscious is particularly important when it comes to how we live and experience our lives.
He proposed that the unconscious consists of two layers – the personal unconscious and the collective unconscious.
The personal unconscious is basically a storehouse of both forgotten and repressed contents (such as emotions, memories, thoughts, personality aspects, attitudes, potentials etc.). It is accessible through our dreams, active imagination and through some deeper reflection and journaling. It also often shows in so-called double-signals as we communicate (i.e. smiling slightly as you talk about something you regret, signaling some hidden joy or excitement that you don’t acknowledge).
The collective (or transpersonal) unconscious is shared with other members of the human species comprising latent memories from our ancestral and evolutionary past.
You can compare this to a sort of cloud that consists of all what it means to be human and all the trauma, joy and memories that the species has gone through. It also consists of universal patterns that function like templates in our psyche, which Jung called the ‚Archetypes‘ (examples would be the Mother Archetype, a Hero, a Witch, etc. – no matter which culture, we all come up with similar symbols and ideas what this ‚labels‘ or ‚archetypes‘ contain). So this cloud or collective unconscious is genetically inherited and is not shaped by the personal experience.
It will nevertheless impact your experience whether you like it or not.
- Have you ever experienced that certain patterns seem to repeat in your life and you wonder why?
- Have you ever experienced a fear that seemed to be totally irrational (i.e. of spiders, snakes, or flying) ?
- Have you ever experienced that you get triggered by certain people or that people get irritated with you despite your best intentions?
- Have you ever experienced how you cannot take or implement a decision even though you want to with all your heart?
These are just a few examples in how both the personal and collective unconscious are impacting your life.
That’s why it sometimes just isn’t enough to set smart goals and have a good strategy. But the answers and solutions that you seek can be found as you dig a little deeper. And the good news is – this can actually be quite fun. It doesn’t have to be as heavy as this might sound.
It is not about drowning in the past, but rather about working with the information in the here and now.
If you are curious how that works, drop me an email. I’d love to connect with you.