Transformance, Recognition Of Self By Self, And Effective Action

Diana Fosha
2008 Zenodo  
People have a fundamental need for transformation. We are wired for growth and healing. And we are wired for self-righting and resuming impeded growth (Emde, 1988). We have a need for the expansion and liberation of the self, the letting down of defensive barriers, and the dismantling of the false self (Ghent, 1990; Schneider, in press). We are shaped by a deep desire to be known, seen, and recognized (Sander, 1995, 2002), as we strive to come into contact with parts of ourselves that are
more » ... (Eigen, 1996). Along with needing to be known authentically, we have a need to know the other (Buber, 1965; Ghent 1990), a profound and undeveloped aspect of attachment. In the process of radical change, we become more ourselves than ever before, and recognize ourselves to be so (Fosha, 2005). Even prior to the need for authentic self-expression and contact, there is the need for effective action on behalf of the self (van der Kolk, in press), which is why emotions are wired into our brains and bodies: the categorical emotions ---fear, anger, joy, sadness, disgust-- play a powerful role in survival. Their full expression bestows access to broadened thought-action repertoires (Damasio, 2001; Darwin, 1872; Fosha, 2000; Frederickson & Losada, 2005). Transformational vehicles themselves, each categorical emotion is associated with a set of adaptive action tendencies evolutionarily dedicated to bringing about conditions within which the individual's optimal development can unfold. The existential need for recognition and the functional need for effective action on behalf of the self are powerful motives; they are both manifestations of transformance. Transformance is my term for the overarching motivational force, operating both in development and therapy, that strives toward maximal vitality, authenticity, and genuine contact. A felt sense of vitality and energy characterizes transformance-based emergent phenomena. Residing deeply in our brains are wired-in dispositions for transformance. Naturally occurring adaptive [...]
doi:10.5281/zenodo.888162 fatcat:3in6kwgkx5hcpmigsr2iyrosmu