This is a five part series on how we currently relate to the model through which a lot of our disease is treated is one that largely operates with external factors, and holds disease as separate from the person in which it arises. This post is part 4 of 5.
So why are we in the current model, and why is it so challenging to step out of? If the ontological model makes so much sense, why aren’t we already using it?
To illustrate this, I’ll provide an example of how blindspots tend to compound in clients and professional support structures, and how we step over our own being.
Let’s imagine that I grew up very poor. Every day during my childhood, I was told not to ask about money, and taught to be concerned about it.
Every day I came home, there was no guarantee where the next meal was going to come from. My parents didn’t talk much about money, but the general attitude was “Don’t think too much about money, because if you look there, you’ll see just how bad things are. Better to keep your head down, work hard, and hope that our next paycheck will come through”.
As a result, I grow up with a conviction about two things:
1. There isn’t going to be enough money; and
2. In order to address that problem, I am going to make sure that I make a lot of money.
Now fast-forward in my life.
I’ve created a very successful career in finance as an accountant first, and then a consultant second. I’ve learned how to manage my money very meticulously. My level of detail has given me many gifts — I know exactly where to put money so as to earn the highest amount of interest, and I’m always moving my investments around.
I’ve totally changed my life! While I used to have an experience that money was scarce, now I never do — look how much of it I have! I’ve risen out of poverty. I have large amounts of investments that bring in more and more income each month.
I don’t ever have to worry about money!
The problem is that while it looks like I’ve completely resolved my underlying fears and scarcity of money, I haven’t changed it one bit. I claim that I never worry about money anymore, except that that’s actually all I do.
I’m constantly concerned about the next turn in the market. Every waking hour of mine is consumed with how I can ensure that I keep the wealth I’ve amassed and how to amass even more. There’s never enough money.
I could hire a maid, hire someone to cook my meals, give me some time to relax and enjoy the life I’ve created, but I don’t, because I never know when things are going to change. Instead, I keep saving, compulsively. I keep trying to make enough money in the hopes that eventually I can stop worrying about money.
I can’t see any of this, because I can only see what lies on the surface. My being eludes me — it lies in my blindspot.
What I notice when I look at myself is that I must have solved my problem, because I have all this money. Sure, I’m concerned about the market and money, but that’s just temporary (I tell myself). I just need to make a little bit more money and I’ll be set and it will all go away for good. Maybe just one more million in the bank, and then I’ll be set.
I have a vested interest in convincing myself that I’ve solved my problems, because I’ve invested so much of my time into doing so. I unconsciously seek to confirm my bias that I’ve really solved the problem.
While I’m unwittingly working to convince myself of this belief that just a little more money will solve the problem, I’m also selling it to my clients.
I end up having people come to me that have the same story of scarcity around money that I do. And they’re looking for the same solution that I’ve created, because we’re both looking to solve the issue on the surface.
And so, with good intentions, I end up helping these people (perhaps as a consultant or money coach) effect the exact same surface-level solution I’ve enacted in my own life. The cycle continues.
Where we end up is with a whole lot of solutions that seem like they really should work, but without any real shift. No transformation. (This by the way, is part of the reason that people who have amassed great amounts of wealth seem so desperate to grab for more — the solution actually worsens, rather than resolves, the underlying fear).
Transformation can only really start once I sit down with someone that has walked through this themselves, tell them all about my awesome money solution, how I’ve solved my money issues, and they quietly nod and say “Mmmm. It seems like money is really scarce for you.”
And then, when I scoff at them and explain in great detail all of the reasons and justifications for why money isn’t scarce, they nod, love me, and simply repeat what they said.
They can distinguish this for me, because someone else has distinguished it for them in the past. They can see underneath all of the strategies I’m running because they’ve bankrupted those same strategies themselves.
They recognize what this particular way of being — a scarcity with money, overlaid with the semblance of abundance — looks like.
Our current model of professional support doesn’t allow for this. Because of the pedestalling and distance that is automatically created between client and professional, the professional is actually dis-incentivized from leaning into this kind of work.
Finally, the client eagerly yearns for a quick, intuitive solution to what is ailing them. We have a resistance to the slower, more transformational approach, because of our inability and unwillingness to sit in our own discomfort.
The professional, without having developed their own ability to simply sit and be with their scarcity around money, feels the client’s empathetic suffering and neediness, and works to alleviate that suffering by offering the obvious short-term solution.
The cycle continues.
You can read the next entry in this series here.