Over the years, I have been asked several times, “How did you get through?” Great question. And there is no simple answer.

How did I make it through my journey? Having felt the souls of two friends of mine helping me during the roughest times, my initial answer is, “I have friends in high places.”

A more complete answer is that for whatever reason, I was incredibly tenacious and knew that I could get through to a better and healthier place. Well, that, and I have friends in high places.

As I floundered through the process, there were several key components that did help me. These were key elements that often pounded in my mind as important. Later, additional concepts came my way which helped me even more.

Tools I Had Initially

Below are some of the most key concepts and thoughts that pounded in my mind through some of the most intense experiences. Certainly, other people going through such difficulties will have other tools that will help them as each journey is unique. Hopefully, some of these tools listed here can be of benefit to others.

  • Basic understanding of Carl Jung
  • Synchronicity and non-randomness
  • Stress breakdown
  • Small gifts and kindnesses
  • Key elements from M. Scott Peck’s Road Less Traveled books
  • The role of “play” — and lack thereof
  • “This is all illusion” — from the Course in Miracles
  • Other people I knew who rejected the labels
  • Strong analytical and translational background
  • Belief that my experience was for a much higher purpose

Tools that Came Later

After the months of additional trauma, several more concepts came my way which described my experiences better and significantly helped me to heal. Many of these resources affirmed my belief that my journey was for a much higher purpose.

Tools that Would Have Helped Immensely

Over the years, I learned additional concepts and research that would have helped me significantly through my journey.

  • Hero’s Journey by Joseph Campbell
  • Religious and / or Spiritual Problems in the DSM (diagnostic manual)
  • Spiritual emergency, developed by Dr. Stanislav and Christina Grof
  • Extreme states of consciousness, also developed by Stanislav and Christina Grof
  • Japanese practice of Kintsugi / Kintsukouri
  • Plato’s Cave
  • Intergenerational trauma
  • Polyvagal theory
  • Understanding the role of the DSM
  • Understanding the differences between types of providers