Personality parts are Resources and when a Resource becomes pathological the result is distress. It is the contention of RT Personality Theory and Therapy that some personality parts carry negative emotions (Vaded States), some carry out unwanted bahavior (Retro States), and some are conflicted with other states (Conflicted States). The precise condition of each pathological state can be diagnosed to understand the dynamic role it has assumed within the personality.
1. Resource State:
A Resource State is a personality part. It may also be called a Resource.
In childhood, when we return to a coping skill over and over again the brain grows according to the stimulation it has received. The combination of axon and dendrite growth and trained synaptic firings creates a physiological Resource State, a personality part with the intellectual and emotional traits that were used during its forming.
When we are currently experiencing life from a Resource State that Resource State is said to be Conscious.
When one Resource State is Conscious some other Resource States may be observing. This is common with surface Resource States. This indicates that the synaptic connections between the Resource States are strong. When a Resource State is Conscious underlying, non-observing, Resource States make up the Subconscious. These states do not share a strong synaptic connection with the Conscious state.
An Introject is an internalized impression held by a Resource State.
An Introject may be an impression of a person, an animal, or an inanimate. Most Introjects are positive and are part of good memories.
Occasionally, an Introject may be internally feared by a Resource State. For example, a childhood Resource State may have had a frightening experience on a playground and may still hold an internal fear of the bully. This underlying fear may prevent the adult from enjoying outdoor gatherings.
Resource States that hold impressions of Introjects that include, fear, rejection, deep disappointment, or confusion, may attain and maintain a varying level of anxiety in relation to these Introjects. When this occurs the Resource State is said to be Vaded. When a Vaded Resource State comes to the Conscious it brings with it the negative feelings it maintains in association to the Introjects it holds. Therefore, Resource Therapy assists Vaded States to become empowered in relation to their Introjects. This does not mean that they change a memory, but it does mean they recognize that an internalized impression has no power.
There are two kinds of fear. There is external fear and internal fear. External fear is our friend. It keeps us from getting too close to the edge of a ravine. It keeps us from going down a dark alleyway that seems dangerous.
Internal fear is not needed. It is fear of Introjects we hold from the past. Introjects are history, and they cannot hurt us. It may be prudent to fear today’s person, but not yesterday’s memory. Resource Therapy assist clients to bring out Resource States that hold negative impressions of Introjects so those state can become empowered and gain a feeling of safety and support.
4. Sensory Experience Memory (SEM):
Sensory Experience Memory & Intellectual Memory.
There are two types of memory and understanding the nature of these is key to understanding how Resource Therapy techniques work.
- A Sensory Experience Memory is one that, when experienced, the person emotionally re-experiences the original event.
- An Intellectual Memory is one that when recalling an occurrence the emotional experience is not relived.
A Sensory Experience Memory is most normally experienced only closer in time to the event. For example, immediately after experiencing something emotional, good or bad, it is common to relive the emotional experience during recall. As time passes, most Sensory Experience Memories are transformed into Intellectual Memories. Sensory Experience Memories may only be experienced in the longer term when the Resource State that had the original experience is holding the Conscious.
How Sensory Experience Memories relate to PathologyWhen a Resource State becomes Vaded the Sensory Experience Memory (SEM) is not transformed over time into an Intellectual Memory (IM). The Vaded State maintains the SEM, probably in an attempt to gain a resolution to the anxiety filled experience, and each time that state comes into the Conscious again, even years later, it re-experiences the SEM. This causes the client to feel out of control and emotionally distraught, often without understanding why. It is most normally the case that the unwanted emotions are experienced without a connection to the Intellectual Memory, therefore the client can feel anxiety, fear, or not good enough without understanding why.
Resource Therapy techniques assist the client to transform the unresolved SEM into an intellectual understanding of safety, support, and empowerment. The SEM is experienced by the Vaded State as if the original occurrence is still happening, so that state needs to gain the emotional calmness that it receives from ‘Emotionally’ understanding that it is now safe and supported. RT Actions are designed precisely to foster this understanding.How Sensory Experience Memories can be used to Resolve Pathology. Sensory Experience Memories may be used in therapy to:A SEM can help a State Vaded with Rejection understand that it is lovable.
During the RT Action 5, Introject Speak, the client is asked to take on the persona of the rejecting person from the past and is asked a series of questions about its ability to share unconditional love. The Introject of a person who was seen as rejecting will show a poor ability to share unconditional love, and that is why it is viewed as rejecting by the client. Next, the client is directed to immediately return to the state Vaded with Rejection. The State Vaded with Rejection brings back with it the immediate SEM, the feelings of the rejecting introject with its incapacity to share unconditional love. It becomes clear to the client not feeling loved was not because of being unlovable, it was because the rejecting introject was not good at sharing unconditional love. Using a SEM in this way provides a positive enlightenment to the client.A SEM can help a Resource State Vaded with Confusion gain an understanding about the dynamic of a relationship. This improved understanding can stop the unwanted rumination.
When Resource States are Vaded with Confusion there is an inability to gain an understanding about the dynamic of a relationship. There is an inability to let something go. The client has an inability to understand how someone my think or feel. By using RT Action 9, the Changing Chairs Introject Action, the client can sit in the chair of the Introject involved in the confusion, then upon returning to the client’s chair, the SEM fosters a better clarity and enables the client to feel less confused.A SEM can help a Resource State that has Retro Behavior decide it can be appreciated by taking on new non-Retro behavior.
Retro States behave in a manner that other states do not like. When speaking directly with a Retro State it will often say it will not change, cannot change, or it could never be liked by other states no matter what it might do. The Retro state does not have an experienced of being liked and appreciated by other states and believes it could never be. The following sequence can help a Retro State want to change unwanted behavior to desired behavior.
- Decide on a new behavior where the purpose of the state can be achieved in a manner that all other states will appreciate.
- Speak with the state that brought the client to therapy and make sure that state approves the new behavior and speak directly to the Retro state saying it will like that state if it takes on the new behavior.
- Speak again to the Retro State, and at this time it will be willing to change its behavior because it will hold the immediate SEM of being liked by the other state. This proof of being appreciated is very compelling to a state that has not been liked, so it becomes willing to take on the positive behavior, thus becoming non-Retro, as it no longer carries out behavior that other states do not like.
5. Glossary of RT Terms:
Changing Chairs Introject Action: This is a resource activity designed to assist patients to hold less confusion in relation to an Introject. The patient is instructed to imagine the essence of an Introject in an empty chair, to say everything that they would like to say to that Introject, then to move into that chair and speak as the Introject back to the patient, expressing how what was just said made the Introject feel. It often results in a cathartic sense of understanding.
Conscious: The Conscious is held by the Resource State that is currently aware and behaving. When a different Resource State takes over the Conscious, sense of self, emotions, behavior and abilities, change. The Conscious awareness may change from intellectual and reflective to reactive and emotional with a change of Resource State.
Conflicted States: Resources in a conflicted condition are in a level of conflict with another Resource to the extent that the individual experiences psychological distress. While it is common and appropriate that Resources hold different opinions (I would really like the car, and there’s no way I can afford a new car)Conflicted States achieve a level of conflict that becomes stressful to the patient.Dissonant States:
A Resource State that is in the Conscious at the wrong time.
Resource (State): A personality part that was created by the repetition of returning over and over again to a coping skill. It is a physiological part of the nervous system created by axon and dendrite growth and trained synaptic firings. Each Resource manifests the traits of the coping skills that formed it. Each will have its own level of emotion, intellect, and abilities. Whenever a person is Conscious there is a Resource holding the Conscious.Resource Personality Theory:
A theory that assumes that personality is composed of separate parts, called Resources. Resource therapists assume that the most direct way to promote change is to work specifically with the Resource that is troubled, rather than with an intellectual state that can easily talk about the problem.
Imagery Check: At the beginning of the intervention the Vivify Specific Action is used to locate the Resource that requires change. Following the intervention, the Imagery Check is used to return to this initial image to test the effectiveness of the intervention, to give the patient practice in a similar setting in the future, and to give the patient confidence that the intervention has been effective. If the Imagery Check reveals no change, there is an indication that more therapeutic work is required relating to the issue.Intellectual Protector States:
These are protector states that come to the Conscious to protect the personality from the emotional feelings of Vaded States. During therapy Intellectual Protector States may attempt to block the therapist from Bridging to the Vaded State that needs resolution. The patient intellectualizes, rather than feels. The Intellectual Protector State normally dislikes the Vaded State, seeing it as a state that gets in the way.
Initial Sensitizing Event: This is a difficult and emotional event that has overwhelmed a Normal Resource, causing it to become a Vaded State. Later, when this Vaded State comes to the Conscious it brings with it the same negative emotional feelings that it experienced during the initial sensitizing event.Introject:
A Resource’s internalized impression of another person, an animal, or an inanimate. Most Introjects are experienced as emotionally positive, but Vaded States hold Introjects from which they have experienced negative emotion. Introjects have only the power given them by the Resource States that hold them.Normal States:
Resources in the Normal condition exhibit psychological health. They function well both externally and within the personality. They are not conflicted with other states and they do not hold psychological distress.
Protector States: Therapeutic resistance is caused by protector states. These are states that attempt to protect fragile Vaded States from coming to the Conscious where the personality would experience the overwhelming emotions they feel. Behavioral examples of protector states coming into the Conscious include anger, withdrawal, intellectualizing, and perseveration. Protector States merely deflect attention, while Retro Avoiding States conduct unwanted behavior to save the personality from the negative feelings of Vaded States.
Retro Avoiding States: Retro States that learn to hold the Conscious to avoid the experience of a Vaded State. In problem gambling, the state that gambles is a Retro Avoiding State. It has learned to protect the patient from a painful Vaded emotion filled state by filling the Consciousness with gambling activity. Other Resources will dislike this gambling Resource, but the Retro State believes its role in saving the patient from the negative emotions of the Vaded State is more important than the disapproval it endures. Other examples of Retro Avoiding States include the states that cause a patient to feel numb, states that act out OCD behavior, self-harming states, and states that are involved with eating disorder activities. These states will hold a strong compulsion to maintain their “helping” behavior as long as the emotional state they protect the patient from remains vaded.Retro Original States:
These are states that have learned a functional coping skill in childhood that is no longer wanted by the patient. Much antisocial behavior is a result of Retro Original States and examples include passive aggressive behavior and rage. These Retro States will continue to see their role as important, until they can be negotiated with to take on an altered or lesser role.
Retro States: Resources that, when conscious, act in ways that other Resources (and usually other people) find problematic. There are two types of Retro States, Retro Original States and Retro Avoiding States. Antisocial behavior, gambling, OCD behavior, and Eating Disorder behavior are examples of Retro States assuming the Conscious.
Sensory Experience Memory: This is the ‘AHA’ understanding that results when a Resource State speaks from the identity of another state or an Introject and then reflects on that experience. For example, a patient may speak to an Introject of another person in an empty chair, move to that chair and reply as the Introject. When patients return to their own chair they bring with them the sensory experiences they had while speaking from the identity of the Introject. This sensory experience memory enables a level of understanding that an intellectual investigation cannot attain.States Vaded with Confusion:
Following an initial sensitizing event, this Resource is left with a fundamental and profound level of confusion, and its response to this lack of ability to understand is a profoundly uncomfortable unknowing. While Resources Vaded with Fear, Rejection, or Disappointment hold a distinctly negative emotion, Resources Vaded with Confusion exhibit anxiety about what is not known to a level that is problematic to the patient. These states are often characterised by rumination.
States Vaded with Disappointment: This Resource takes on an overwhelming feeling of disappointment because of the gulf between what was desired or expected in life and the perceived reality. It is not the magnitude of what has happened that vades this Resource, it is the interpretation of what has happened that vades the state. These states cause psychological depression.
States Vaded with Fear: Resources Vaded with Fear are carrying internal fear everywhere they go and when they come to the Conscious they bring it to the surface with them. Resources Vaded with Fear prevent patients from feeling free to live their lives in a way that they choose, and they are the root of many psychological disturbances.States Vaded with Rejection:
Resources Vaded with Rejection feel unlovable. This feeling of not being good enough drives the patient, when it comes to the Conscious, to experience emotions of disempowerment, and they sometimes create a need to be perfect, as expressed in over competitiveness, out-of-control purchasing, and eating disorders.Surface Resources:
Surface Resources, as opposed to Underlying Resources, are those that are used frequently. They normally share memories together, and often observe other surface states when one is in the Conscious. A Resource that is out at work, and a Resource that is out while travelling are examples of Surface States.
Underlying Resources: Underlying Resources, as opposed to Surface Resources, are those that have been out frequently in the past but currently seldom come into the Conscious. Most childhood states are underlying Resources, with memories not readily available to surface states. Vaded States are most commonly underlying states, which occasionally come to the Conscious harbouring feelings of angst.Vaded Avoided States:
Vaded States are problematic for a patient in two ways, they can be Vaded Conscious States or Vaded Avoided States. Vaded Avoided States do not hold the Conscious, but when they come near or temporarily into the Conscious a ‘helping state’ (a Retro Avoiding State) uses an addictive behavior to force the Vaded State out of the Conscious, saving the patient from having to re-experience the overwhelmingly bad feelings of the Vaded State.
Vaded Conscious States: Vaded States are problematic for a patient in two ways; they can be Vaded Conscious States or Vaded Avoided States. Vaded Conscious States come into and hold the Conscious, causing the patient to feel emotional and out-of-control while they do. When they come to the surface they bring with them their overwhelming negative emotions, and this is what the patient experiences when they are in the Conscious.
Vaded States: Resources that were in a Normal Condition prior to experiencing an initial sensitising event that, because there was no form of crisis intervention, left them feeling chronically overwhelmed with the negative emotions. These Resources, while in a Vaded condition, are the cause of much pathology.
Vivify Specific: This refers to vivifying a specific instance when a Resource has been in the Conscious in order to bring it back into the Conscious during therapy for the purpose of intervention. Some patients attempt to give the therapist general times a Resource has been out, and this presentation will not bring the desired Resource into the Conscious. The Vivify Specific Action requires very specific detail relating to a time the state has been conscious. During this process present tense language is used.