Frequently Asked Questions
Everyone has parts like the inner critic, the scared child, the people pleaser, the angry part, as well as the loving caretaker, the organiser, the wise guide, the party-goer and the daydreamer for example. In IFS sessions we find out more about each part in relation to a goal, issue or concern in your life.
In IFS we consciously welcome all our parts with curiosity and compassion. We seek to understand them and appreciate their efforts to help us. We don’t override them by criticising them or trying to ignore them nor do we don’t lose sight of the ways they may be causing us problems. With the support of the therapist you will develop a relationship of caring and trust with each part, learning more about how the part experiences the world, why it does what it does and its protective or positive intentions. We learn that even if a part is doing something that is causing pain, difficulty or holding us back from our dreams it is doing so for its good reason and we help this part release old burdens – unhelpful beliefs, thoughts, fears, strategies – so it can choose to function in your life in a healthy way.
We do this through holding an inner conversation with our parts and listening inwardly with compassion and care. Whenever any part is deeply heard the process of healing and growth occurs.
IFS is not so very different from a normal counselling session except that rather than trying to work things out from one perspective (for example, the you that walked into the room and said “I have a problem with…”) we take the time to listen to all other parts of you who have an interest in this problem. I support you in exploring your own psyche and getting a better understanding of yourself. At times I might point towards aspects of yourself that you do not notice or other parts which take over and run your life bearing in mind all parts are welcome in the room.
Some people find it strange to think about having inner parts or personalities. But you may notice you have different roles and ways of being in your life. You may behave in a certain way as a parent, or a son or daughter, or at your work, or when you go out with friends. It is these parts, or aspects, or sub personalities, of you that give you lots of ways of relating to the world and the situations you find yourself experiencing.