Heard, Understood and Touched


I have no idea who “K.” was but Virginia Satir was an influential 20th century psychotherapist and notable author. She described her work as helping others in “Becoming More Fully Human”. What is below Ms. Satir wrote for a twelve-year old patient who said “What is life about anyway. Life makes no sense. What is the meaning of it all?”

I am Me.
In all the world,
there is no one else exactly like me.
Everything that comes out of me
is authentically mine, because I alone chose it.
I own everything about me:
my body, my feelings, my mouth, my voice,
all my actions, whether they be to others or myself.
I own my fantasies, my dreams, my hopes, my fears.
I own my triumphs and successes, all my failures and mistakes.
Because I own all of me,
I can become intimately acquainted with me.
By so doing, I can love me and be friendly with all my parts.
I know there are aspects about myself that puzzle me,
and other aspects that I do not know,
but as long as I am friendly and loving to myself,
I can courageously and hopefully look for solutions
to the puzzles and ways to find out more about me.
However I look and sound, whatever I say and do,
and whatever I think and feel at a given moment
in time is authentically me.
If later some parts of how I looked, sounded,
thought, and felt turn out to be unfitting,
I can discard that which is unfitting,
keep the rest, and invent something new
for that which I discarded.
I can see, hear, feel, think, say, and do.
I have the tools to survive, to be close to others,
to be productive, and to make sense
and order out of the world of people
and things outside of me.
I own me, and therefore,
I can engineer me.
I am me,
and I am Okay.

I am grateful for my favorite used bookstore (Gardner’s) where I found Virginia Satir’s simple book filled with the insightful words above. Her thoughts give me sharpened insight here at the start of a new month.

I believe the greatest gift I can conceive
of having from anyone is to be seen by them,
heard by them, to be understood and touched by them.
Virginia Satir

Photo credit: Pol Ubeda Hervas
(“I am not there” series)