Teaching Teenagers about Mental Health

Picture illustrating flow of mind  
The following is to introduce a program of instruction, which can be delivered to teenagers from age fourteen upwards.


A Curriculum


The problems we face in the mental health field are considerable. With the system we currently have there appears to be, as with lots of other areas, much under funding. Yet for the Government to pour lots more funding into this, and into all other needful areas, would be putting too much upon the taxpayer.

I believe that there is a very simple and basic solution here in the mental health field. We are trying to start the intervention process for mental health problems far too late. This means that by the time intervention occurs, the solution for troubled individuals is too expensive, and too time-consuming to be effectively and comprehensively done.

It then becomes necessary to fall back on the solution of medication, which though often quite effective, is not really the best solution in the long term. There are often quite awful side effects, and the recipient can come to believe that the side effect they are experiencing is a phenomenon generated by their mental ill health condition. This can result in a drop of morale and self-confidence, and a further increase in the level of drug dependency. The other problems that we are all aware of are the horrific things that can happen when people stop taking the prescribed medications! The system just does not seem always able to cope with this.

The solution here is not to wait until mental health disintegrates, at which time the treatment is costly, and not able to properly cope. We need to set up and activate a program for younger teenagers so that they learn how to understand, and know their way around in the territory of the mind, and so know how to keep emotionally and mentally fit and healthy. This can be achieved quite easily and simply by presenting young people with a few very basic facts, either in the classroom on a similar basis to the way sex education is delivered, or possibly to present it by way of the internet, or some of both.

Such a program could be delivered in about six once weekly forty-to sixty-minute classroom sessions, to cover both the informative facts, and the practical side of the program.

Another, possibly even better delivery, would be the same program being given in special evening sessions by specially trained people. These people would move from school to school, delivering the program. The parents would be requested to attend and to participate in these sessions. They would then understand what their children were being taught, and be able to understand and support them in the application of the practical methods being instructed. They would also find these very useful to use for themselves whenever they might become upset, emotionally frustrated or stressed, and so know how to regain a happy equilibrium whenever needed.

The results of this program, if maintained, should result in young adults coming through with much reduced levels of emotional and mental health problems, and a marked reduction in the suicide rate.

The Program


First Session: Your Emotions and your feelings.

The following are the facts you need to know to keep healthy and on top of your life.

1.   Your emotions and your mind are allies. They work together.

Your emotions are feelings like serenity, joy, enthusiasm, happiness, boredom, anger, frustration, fear, sadness, grief, and despair.

Look after your emotions and your mind will look after you !

Your mind will stay fit and well.

2.   Healthy emotions put power into your actions.

Unhealthy emotions spoil your actions and cause problems in your life.

3.   Unhealthy emotions, like blocked upset feelings, feeling frustrated or stressed, are called charged emotions.

4.   Squash or hold down charged emotions too much, and your mind will begin to squash you!

Held down upset emotions are stored away in the cupboard of the mind. The energy of them, if not cleared and discharged, builds a pressure like a balloon with too much air in it that will burst out the moment too much is pushed in there. If you don’t learn how to clear them, and so release the pressure, it can cause you problems that undermine a healthy mind.

Rule: Always release and clear away charged emotions at the soonest possible time. It’s best to do it the same day they happen.

That is how you look after your emotions and keep your mind healthy.

You do not clear your emotions by suppressing them for too long. We all have to hold back our charged emotions sometimes to stop things getting out of hand. But we should move to clear them, and regain happiness soon afterwards.

5.   There are two main ways to clear up charged emotions.

The first way is to find a friend who you know will understand you. You can listen when needed to each other about your difficulties, your upsets and problems, and so let off all your steam.

The second way which you can use all through your life to discharge any charged emotions, upsets, stress or frustration is the simple practical method called Emotional Release Affirmations.

Emotional Release Affirmations

The system for releasing and discharging (de-energising) upset feelings, frustrations, and day-to day stresses is really very simple. This has two parts. The first part prepares you for doing the second and main part (discharging and clearing out all upset feelings).

Part 1:

(a) Put the uppermost upset feeling into words.

This is the main feeling (emotion) of upset, or stress, or frustration that you have. There is probably more than one upset feeling, but we take one at a time. This is because trying to release all upset feelings at the same time is difficult, and may just stir up or intensify the upset, so we first want the one that most of your attention is on. Let’s say that we express it in the following way: “I feel very, very angry.”

(b) Change the above statement into its opposite.

This gives you the affirmation we’re going to use. In this case, suitable wordings would be “I feel totally calm and peaceful”, or “ I feel absolutely at peace with everything”. It must not express any negatives, (like “I do not feel angry”)

The reason we change the statement of the upset into its opposite is that this opposite, each time it is stated, provokes you to protest the untruth of what it says. By this means, you are provoked into releasing a little of the upset feeling.

Part 2:

Using the Affirmation

By doing several cycles of stating the affirmation, and then responding by expressing the truth of how you really do feel, little by little you express and discharge all of the feelings that were suppressed at the time the upset or frustration happened. This now leaves you feeling released from that portion of the upset where in the example above you felt angered.

There are two ways that your session can be done:

(a) Verbally, and out loud, giving fully voiced expression to any feeling that arises in response to saying the affirmation. This is the best method, because it allows thoughts and feelings to be fully and effectively released.

(b) Silently, but expressed both with words and feelings in the privacy of your mind. It’s often difficult to find a private place where these sorts of things can be expressed out loud without being overheard, and this can cause unwanted interruption or other problems. However, when you get fluent with the method it can still be very good for giving relief from upset feelings to use this second method.

Session Steps

1. State the affirmation and watch for a response within your thoughts and feelings to saying the affirmation.

2. Express those thoughts and feelings (briefly).

3. Check off and away the portion of emotional charge that you just released by saying one of the following: “ok”, “good”, “thank you”, “fine”, “alright”, or something similar.

4. Do steps 1 to 3 again and again, until you have relieved and discharged that part of the upset that was provoked by saying the affirmation. At this point, repeating the affirmation provokes no further inner response. This step normally doesn’t take more than a few minutes.

5. Scan how you now feel inwardly. Do you feel full relief, or is there another, and different feeling of upset from the one you just released that now needs clearing. For example, you just cleared out the anger, but now, that’s gone, and you feel better, but there’s a feeling of grief that was hidden before by the anger. If there’s nothing left and you feel full relief, you end off the session. If there is another upset feeling, you deal with it with all of the previous method, Parts 1(a) and 1 (b), and Part 2., (steps 1 to 5 above), until the whole thing has been cleared, and you are feeling happy again.

The following is an example of how to do a correctly done and effective session.

A Sample Emotional Release Affirmation Session

First, let’s set up an imaginary example as a background for what happened to cause the upset that we are going to clear by doing our session.

Scene: My name is Andrew. Last week, my older brother Joe noticed that I had something on my mind. It was about an embarrassing incident that had happened to my best friend recently, to do with his girlfriend. I wasn’t going to tell anybody about it, but Joe kept asking me what was up. He wouldn’t leave it alone even though I tried several times to put him off. He got miffed, and said didn’t I trust him anymore. I made him promise not to tell anyone, and so I confided about it to him.

This morning I’ve found out that he’s told someone else and now the word has got around about it. My friend is going to be furious with me, and our friendship will be at risk. I’ feel totally gutted, and I don’t know how to handle it, until I remember about this method we got taught recently for clearing and releasing upsets in such a way that no damage or hurt is caused anywhere.

It’s supposed to clear the upset just a little at a time, so it’s not unpleasant to do, and yet it’s supposed to work easily and quickly. I get out and go over the notes I have about how to do it, so here’s a record of the proceedings.

Explanatory notes, guidance, and helpful comments will be put in brackets.

(This session is how it’s done when you have full privacy, and no sounds that you make will be misunderstood by anyone around, or lead to someone interrupting you. If you don’t have full privacy, you will need to express anything vocal, or anything that makes noise, in the privacy of your mind’s eye and inner mental space. Examples such as shouting, groans, screams, or animal-like sounds, or sounds of hitting or kicking things etc.)

Part 1.

(a): Exactly how do I feel right now? (If more than one feeling, take the uppermost or strongest one first --- we can deal with any others when this one is cleared). ------ Answer: “ I feel totally gutted.”

(b): Change the wording of how I feel to its opposite = “I feel absolutely fantastic.”

Part 2.

Step 1: State the affirmation, and focus full attention to watching for any thought or feeling you get that’s provoked in response to the affirmation:

“ I feel absolutely fantastic.”

Step 2: Express any thought or feeling you are getting in response to the affirmation:

“ That’s absolute rubbish -- I feel totally gutted!” (This releases a feeling of protest that I suppressed when I discovered my brother betrayed my confidence. Also, my body feels limp and saggy, like it’s lost its vital energy, so I allow my body to express and clear that by letting it physically sag for a few moments, until the feeling clears.)

Step 3:

Check off and away the physical and emotional charge that was just released:

“ Ok, that’s good.”

Step 4:

Repeat steps 1 to 3, over and over, until all the upset stimulated by saying the affirmation, has cleared:

1. “ I feel absolutely fantastic.”

2. No, not me! ---- I’m totally in grief because I will probably lose my best friend through this.

3. “ Thank you.”

1. “ I feel absolutely fantastic.”

2. (Am watching for another feeling to surface when I say the affirmation, but nothing seems to come this time. This means that all of the upset to do with “feeling totally gutted” has been discharged and cleared. S0 now we check off completion of that affirmation:

3.“ OK. That’s good, that ends off that part of the upset, very good!”

(Now we have to see if there’s another part of the episode that hasn’t yet been cleared. If it’s all been cleared, there will be a sense of relief and release from all of the upset, and the session can be ended. There will be a feeling of being back at peace with things.

However, there can be other parts to the upset, which were not to do with “feeling gutted” and so may only be cleared using new affirmations. For this particular example we’re going to have one more part to the upset, and so we now start off again with a new part 1.

Part 1.

(a) “How do I now feel?” ------ “ I feel very angry with Joe.”

(b) Change the wording of how I now feel, to its opposite, i.e.,

“I feel very pleased with Joe.”

Part 2.

1: “I feel very pleased with Joe.”

2: “Like hell I do, I’m totally pissed off with him!”

3: “Ok.”

1: “ I feel really pleased with Joe.”

2: (I notice that when I said that, I really felt like snarling. And so I let go three animal-like snarls. ----“ Snaaaar --- Snaaaar ----- Snaaarsh !!! ---- That feels better!”

3: “Very good!”

1: “I feel really pleased with Joe.”

2: “Like f___ I do, I just feel like smashing everything!” ------ (I begin to kick a pile of newspapers that have been put there for the session, in case feelings like this arise. This goes on for about 15 seconds, and then I break out in a spontaneous uncontrolled laughter of complete release. Sweat rolls down my forehead, and suddenly I feel totally free of all the upset.

I realise that this was what I felt like doing to Joe when I discovered he had betrayed me, but I had to hold down and suppress such a rage. But now I’m free of it all.

3: “Excellent! --- End of session.”

(Note: It doesn’t need to end off so dramatically always, because this is usually a little by little release of feelings. But such a dramatic release is something that can sometimes happen, and so if it does, don’t be totally surprised.)

The important thing is that when you stop getting any thoughts or feelings in response to stating the affirmation, you end off from doing that particular affirmation, otherwise you will begin to feel frustrated and upset again. You then check with “How do I feel now?” If there’s another upset feeling to be released, you use the same method and sequence as above to clear it. You do all of the steps and checks so far described until there are no more upset feelings or frustrations left to need releasing. At this point, you should be feeling lighter in spirit and at peace again, and so you end off the session.

Some important things to note:

Firstly, this method of Emotional Release Affirmations for clearing upset and suppressed feelings is not to be confused with another kind of affirmation that you may come across. That is the Positive Affirmation method, which uses the affirmations in a totally different way. The positive statement of an affirmation, (for example, “ I feel happy and at peace”) is simply repeated over and over, with the idea being to install those positive feelings into the subconscious mind.

This method may work for some people, but my experience is that where there are strong feelings or frustrations that contradict the affirmation, then the subconscious mind finds it very difficult to accept the spirit of the affirmation. This is because the upset provokes a feeling of protest that the affirmation is not true.

In this event, it’s much more effective to use our Emotional Release Affirmation method to clear out all the upsets and frustrations, and then we find that our underlying natural positivity comes back to us as our dominant feeling.

Our second note is especially important. We might well ask why bother using our emotional release method when perhaps we could simply just release all our feelings at once either at the time of the upset, or later on.

Firstly, things can get complicated if feelings are all let go at the time of an upset. That can easily lead to a ‘firefight’ situation, where the whole situation escalates out of control, because everyone involved is now going to react to our uncontrolled emotional ‘assault’, and let go their own emotional attack. Usually this winds up with everyone being upset and you probably end up feeling worse.

The other option, discharging all of the upset feelings and frustrations later on, but in a spontaneous and uncontrolled way without bothering to use our Emotional Release Affirmation method, has pitfalls and difficulties. Our affirmation method is very easy, and because it’s a little-by-little process, discharge of the upset is efficient, and doesn’t go into overload where the release of upset energy gets jammed. This overload often happens when uncontrolled release of the upset is attempted. The result is then that all of the different parts of the upset and all of the different feelings in it, all get stirred up together, but not released. This leaves you feeling even worse than before. Even if you could clear all the upset this way, your sudden release of energy may be violent, and so damaging to property, or possibly anyone nearby! It’s much better to use the affirmations.

Second Session: Your Mind.

A healthy mind is like a computer. Your mind works mainly by using various kinds of mental images. These can be pictures in the ‘mind’s eye’, like memory pictures, or creative imagination pictures, or hearing in the ‘mind’s ear’, as we do with music that we like. They can be in the form of thoughts, ideas, attitudes, and so on. Or they can be other kinds of symbols such as words, numbers, or musical and mathematical symbols. We use all of these, and more in the processing that goes on in the computer of the mind.

And so, the mind divides up into two basic activities using all of these images and symbols:

1.    Creative imagining of mind’s eye pictures, images and symbols

2.          Thought processes (the processing of pictures, ideas, attitudes, images and symbols)

Creative imaging includes:

Making and storing memories in the form of picture images of our experiences

Creative imagination in the form of mental-image pictures in the ‘mind’s eye’

Thought processes:

These include the very many mental abilities and functions that we have, some of the main ones being:

Interpretation of all the sensory perceptions that we receive

Logical reasoning

Evaluating, estimating and making judgements

Analysing (discovering and noting all of the separate things that go to make up something)

Synthesising (working out what separate things can be put into combinations so as to make new things.)

Assigning labels and categories to things, which give them meaning

Awareness of the differences and similarities in the things we see

Setting goals for ourselves, and energising actions to achieve them by the mind-power of motivation and intention

Decision making and planning

Creating, using, and holding thoughts, ideas, opinions, and attitudes about life, the world, and the universe in which we exist

Forming mental grooves (habits), and reflexes


The above is not necessarily a complete list, but it gives you a good idea of how amazing and magical are the powers of our mind. It is a wonderful computer, and is really worthy of all of the care we can give to it.

To stay healthy, we need to control and guide our mind, and what it does. An unhealthy mind without your direction will set up unhelpful habits, and may bypass your own wishes, and act against your best interests. It may then become clogged and inefficient, and cause difficulties.

How to care for your mind

1.   As emphasised in the first session, always discharge and clear upset emotions and feelings, and any impulses attached to them.

2.   Work in a useful positive way with the following law of the mind:

Where attention goes, energy flows. You have the power to choose to guide where you place and focus your attention. You can give attention to things and ideas that will help you to improve your life and your understanding, or you can allow a bad habit to form; that is to let your focus drift to unhelpful ideas and thoughts. These are often called negative self-talk, which is letting one’s attention dwell upon ideas about one’s self, or others, or about life, that are unhealthy, and if allowed to continue too long, can undermine your life. If you get to know your way around your mind, emotions and feelings, and your deeper soul, you will find it easy to avoid such a trap. But before expanding on how to use that knowledge to your advantage, let’s be clear about the kind of negative ideas not to bother to waste your energy upon.

They are unhelpful ideas or any word-thought that is a put-down of one’s-self or others, or about life, or things in your life like; “I’m no good at anything”, or “I always make mistakes,” “Joe is an idiot”, or “life is no good.” There are endless examples you could think of. Life may be far from perfect, but we can put energy in helpful ideas to improve things for ourselves and for others. Bothering to let attention dwell in negative ideas can lead to life becoming undermined and unhappy.

Why would you bother to water a garden full of weeds, including some poisonous ones, and with no vegetables or flowers in it? You would though, be happy to water a garden full of usable crops or beautiful flowers. It’s just the same with the mind, only instead of water, it’s giving your thought energy to something that fosters it and makes it grow.

Here are some helpful facts that will assist you with this.

1.    Uncleared upset emotions and feelings find it easy to attach themselves to negative and undermining thoughts. This gives them a power charge that can cause you problems.

This is why it’s so important to use the two methods given in session number one for clearing upset feelings and emotions.

2.    Negative thoughts can only persist or be a problem if upset feelings and emotions give them power. Clear the upsets, and the negative thoughts fade away and die with no harm done.

Third Session: Morale

Do not underestimate the value of having a tool with which to raise your feeling of morale at those times in your life when you feel down and alone. Sometimes things seem to go in threes when something goes wrong, and it can feel demoralising when there’s one blow after another.

On the other hand, when your spirits are up, and morale is good, it’s easy to cruise along, with everything going fine, or you even get ‘on a roll’, and everything you touch ‘turns to gold’ and you seem to be able to do nothing wrong.

It seems to be a parallel to what happens with what we call ‘momentum’ on the physical level of things. Once something gets rolling, as it gathers speed it gets harder and harder to stop it, because of its momentum.

Rule: Always act quickly to repair your morale when it falls. That way you maintain your momentum, your feeling of wellbeing, and the ability to do well in life.

There are a few guidelines to be followed in this, which we will outline first. Then we will detail a simple method you can quickly and easily use to restore your wellbeing.

Traps not to fall into

Some people try to lift their morale by doing things that they enjoy, but which also endanger their eventual wellbeing, and in doing such things can cause real and difficult problems for themselves.

For example, going gambling, which after a success or two can become a destructive addiction, and the victim finds it almost impossible to stop, even when it all goes wrong, and debts mount up, and other wrongs are done to find money for the habit. Another is what some people call ‘shopping therapy’. That’s all very well for the wealthy, but some can’t seem to help it once it’s given them a ‘high’ a few times. That again can cause financial difficulties, and from that, family strains and relationship problems.

Another often much more serious example is using drugs to get on a ‘high’, and so getting hooked on them. This can lead to crime in order to pay for the habit. From there come family problems, and sometimes, serious mental problems from the misuse of the drugs. We have all heard of some of the awful things that people on ‘P’ have done for example.

Here is a much better way. Please keep all of these notes so you can use this method when you need it!

Listed here are things from your life you are to bring back to mind one after the other, and to dwell upon for a few moments, and to enjoy and savour. You continue to do this until you feel happier, and have a sense that you’ve slipped into a better personal space --- or that you’ve moved into a higher gear with your personal energy, and feel restored.

If doing this once does not fully restore your morale, you can do it again once each day, until you have stabilised your recovery of wellbeing. But do not overdo it in any one session. If you move into a happier space and feeling, don’t keep on doing it until boredom sets in, or else you might slip out of that pleasant space that you went into.

List of memories for morale boosting.

During each of these remembrances, savour it for a few moments and re-experience how it felt. When you have completed that, check it off and away by saying ‘Ok’, or ‘good’, or ‘fine, to register that you’ve done that one and checked it off, and are ready for the next one. You can either do that out loud, or if you prefer, you can say it to yourself mentally with your inner voice. ------- Do not omit this, it is important, and you do this checking off upon completion of every action given to you to do in any of the practical exercises in this program.

Take as long as you need with each of these until you have found one, but if you really haven’t had one of the experiences listed, that’s ok, just move on to the next on the list. But don’t just give up on recalling one of them because it takes a little while, and you lose patience.

Start at the top now, and work through the list, following all the instructions given above.


Think of a time when you enjoyed yourself. ----- Very good.

Remember a time that was interesting. ------ Ok.

Bring to mind a time you were pleased with something you did. ------ Good.

Remember a time you liked someone else very much. ------ Alright.

Bring to memory a time someone else liked you lots. ------ Very good.

Locate a time that you were pleased with someone else. ------ Ok.

Remember a time you liked communicating with someone. ------ Good.

Visualise in your life a time you sensed that someone liked communicating with you. ------ Alright.

Remember a time someone was pleased with you. ------ Good.

Re-experience a time in your life that was special. ------ Ok.

Remember a time you achieved something. ------ Good.

Bring to mind a time that you enjoyed a trip somewhere. ------ Ok.

Think of when you met a new person in your life who was special. ----Ok .

Remember a time someone felt you were special. ------ Very good.

Savour again a time when you felt excited. ------ Ok.

Recall again a moment when you attained a goal. ------ Alright.

Remember a time you had a special insight about something. -----Good.

Recapture again a time that your body felt really good. ------ Ok.

Remember feeling really in tune with what was going on. ------ Good.

Bring to mind when you did well at something. ------ Alright.

Visualise again a time when you were pleased with some help you gave. --- Good.

Remember a moment of fulfilment. ------ Ok.

Think of when you did something creative that you enjoyed. ------ Very good.

Relive an enjoyable moment at a dance, or sporting activity, or other body- exercise or experience. ------ Good.

Remember a time you were in harmony with someone else. ------ Ok.

In your mind, re-experience a time that you overcame a difficulty. ------ Good.

Recall a peak experience. ------ Alright.

Bring to mind a time someone helped you that made a difference to your life. ------ Good.

Remember something that was so funny you couldn’t stop yourself laughing. ------ Ok.

Think of something you found really interesting. ------ Ok.

Remember something that you enjoyed when you were young. ------ Good.

Okay now, I think this list is good enough to give you the idea, so if you want, you can add to the list with your own choice of special moments. Or, you can go through this list again, finding some different moments in your life. I hope though, that you didn’t go on past a significant energy-shift that leaves you feeling lighter and brighter. If you did that, just put it down to experience. You will soon get the idea from trial and error.

If you did continue past the energy-shift moment, you can stop for a minute now to recall how you felt when the shift occurred. Just re-experience how it felt, for a few moments, and recall any feeling of clarity, pleasant feeling, or insight that you experienced. Then end off the exercise.

You can do this exercise again, any time you feel you need a boost to your spirits. You do not necessarily need to do the whole list each time, but just until you feel more cheerful.


Fourth Session: Goals, Choices, and Intention.

Whatever else life is all about, one thing cannot be disputed. Life is an adventure! An adventure requires challenges, goals, and making choices.


It is impossible to have an adventure, or any sort of challenge without the possibility of adversity, difficulty, or, sometimes even, pain. Remember the old adage, “every cloud has a silver lining.” In this case, adversity of whichever kind is the ‘cloud’ that enables us to have the ‘silver lining’ of adventure. If things go wrong, always look for a way to turn things around. Be patient and a way will usually present itself.

Make it a valuable rule of your life that when adversity of any kind comes your way, that you see it as part of a new adventure. Very often, by relaxing about it in this way, we are enabled to look for and find new opportunities and solutions (silver linings) hidden in the clouds of adversity.

When problems and difficulties arise and you cannot see any way around it, a good plan is just to delay action, park the problem and await the inspiration for a solution to present itself from the uncharted deeper waters of the inner self. Hidden there are many treasures and resources. Sometimes the answer will present itself to you in a day or so, or sometimes a little longer. Sometimes you just wake up in the morning with the answer.

Another thing that helps here is to work to develop a good practical philosophy of life that will stand you in good stead when things get tough.


To succeed with our goals we need an important energy of the mind called INTENTION. Intention strengthens and motivates us. It is what we use to carry into action the things we have decided to do.

Intention is strong when morale is high.

Intention is weak when morale is low.

As with any ability we have, there can be a downside as well as an upside to a strong intention. It’s fine to win your objectives against all opposition from others who have intentions that oppose your own intentions, especially when they are in some kind of team or group that’s fundamentally opposed to the goals and purposes that you stand for.

The downside is when your opposition comes from someone with whom you have a close relationship, like a family member, a loved one, or a friend. Also when it comes from someone in your own team or group, or from someone with whom you need to have a good working relationship. The danger here is that both sides can’t win, and the one who over-rides the other with stronger force of intention can trigger off a deteriorating relationship with the other person.

If this sort of situation were to be widespread, there would be all sorts of firefights going on that would damage otherwise good relationships. This isn’t always easy to repair, and so in such a situation it’s much better to achieve your objective by friendly persuasion. Another way is to arrive at a consensus, or a deal in which each one gives up something to the other, so that you both win something, and a useful and valuable working relationship or friendship is maintained.

Now, returning to our main topic of morale, I wonder if you’ve ever come across someone who keeps talking about all the things they’re going to do, but they seldom get to do anything. This is a person whose morale is damaged. Do not become one of them. Use Emotional Release Affirmations from our first session and the Recall Exercises from our third session, as well as the insights in these pages. This will keep your morale high, so you can gather the momentum that puts you ‘on-a-roll’, and adds a special magic to your life.

Goals and Objectives

There are different types of goals and objectives that we can have. First, let’s define what we mean here when we use these terms.


Here, we are talking about purposes that we are going to work to achieve.


These are sub-goals that we select when we divide a major goal up into smaller bits, each of which, when achieved, brings us a step closer to the attainment of the overall goal.

Types of Goal

Basic Goal is our main and overall goal in life. Every other major goal we have in life seems to connect with it. It is to do with the most fundamental purpose we have in living. Very often it forms quite early in life. Sometimes it almost seems as though we are born with it. It is important to our wellbeing that we consciously identify exactly what is our basic goal. Otherwise we can be distracted from what is really important to us, and use too much energy in things that don’t really give satisfaction or, a deeper sense of fulfilment.

Major Goals are the main goals that we have for the major subdivisions of life. They should be in harmony with our Basic Goal, Otherwise we water down our life-purpose. Examples are our main goals to do with things like family, work, hobbies, friendship, relationships, groups that we belong to, and other main sections of our lives.

Minor Goals are significant but smaller goals that we have. They might relate to our more important goals, or may not. There are many of them and can be added to quite frequently as other ones are attained.

Examples: to have a better motor car; to go to see a ballet performance, or opera; to go somewhere interesting for the annual holiday period, or to visit a friend next week. They add spice to our lives, but can be sacrificed if needed, when a more important goal demands the time involved.

Provisional goals are goals we make which will only be activated if certain other things come to happen which make the provisional goal either advantageous, or necessary to work upon.

Creative goals are goals that add something positive to life in general or to the enjoyment of life by self and others.

Destructive goals are goals that cause harm either to others, or self, or other parts of existence. They might or might not have been meant to cause harm, but because of wrong ideas, or carelessness, or traumatic events and upsets, damage is caused.


The whole of life could be seen to be a procession of different choices that we make, one after the other. The interesting thing here is that each choice we make deals us up a different menu of the next choices we must select from, for what to do next.

The problem with this is that if we choose without proper thought of where our choice is going to lead us, we can end up on a slippery slope of choices that look relatively harmless, but in fact, are far from it.

We may certainly have the right to make our own mistakes rather than the ones other people try to foist off on us. But, remember this, ----- mistakes (bad choices) all come at a price. Maybe that price is more than you want to pay. So look ahead in order that you can see the choices that will be on the next menu that will be served up to you as a result of any choice you might be selecting to follow from the present menu you are facing.

I’m sure that you can all think of good examples yourselves, but a frequent choices pitfall often fallen into by the unwary, is in our choice of those with whom we are going to hang about. You might, for instance admire someone for a quality they have that attracts you, and so you close your eyes to (or perhaps don’t even notice) other qualities they have that will later put you under pressure to act in ways that you, of yourself, would never choose. Especially when such a person is adept at manipulating others with well-practised emotive phrases that make them feel impelled to follow a choice selected for them.




Looked at in one way, this subject can be one of the most complex studies we could undertake. After all, all of the world’s problems (and there are very many of those) could be traced back to bad relationships of one type or another. If we were to include an outline of all the things that lead to bad relationships this would be a very long study indeed.

For this reason, we are going to look at the subject in a more productive way. That is from the point of view of what is good relationship, and how that can be brought into being. After all, if we know that we can easily work out that all departures from it will lead to worsening of relationship.

Good Relationships


Good communication grows out of the willingness to share.

If what we are sharing is information of one kind or another, we need to be willing to listen, as well as to talk.

Listening doesn’t just mean hearing the words spoken, but also understanding the meaning of what the other person wants to convey. This sometimes requires patience and goodwill. Also sometimes required is the willingness to ask a question when you haven’t understood fully what the other person has said.

Be willing to be INTERESTED to the same degree as you are being INTERESTING.

Other elements of the fuel that empowers a good relationship

Good Judgement





Having ideas in common on important or interesting issues


Generosity of spirit


A proper balance between compassion and not suffering fools gladly

Good judgement

Having good judgement is not the same thing as being judgmental. Almost everything we do requires judging and estimating things in order to create good outcomes from what we do. This is very different from being judgmental about someone. Being judgmental is taking a ‘holier than thou’ attitude to another person, which is a way to damage relationships.

If you’re going to be in communication with someone, and so are going to share information that could be misused, first be sure that the other person is trustworthy and able to be discrete about what you have revealed. If in doubt find a way test this first, otherwise you may endanger other good relationships.

The tools we can use to review existing relationships are good judgement and good perception (accurate observation). Accurate perception is a part of good judgement. In a good relationship of any kind, a very damaging thing is to misunderstand. No one likes being misunderstood by someone close because it ruptures the feeling of closeness. If in the slightest doubt about another’s actions or communications, withhold judgement until you have given the other party the opportunity to explain, and to answer any questions you need to ask.


Trust is like the soil out of which a good relationship can grow. If it is not there, or cannot be relied upon, there will not be a good or rewarding relationship. All parties to the relationship need to establish and maintain trustworthiness. Even just a single breach can be very damaging. It does not take much imagination to understand why this is, because you know full well that when someone breaks your trust, you never know whether they can be trusted in the future.

If you value a relationship you have, then make very sure that you are going to be trustworthy. You need this from others, but it is a two-way thing, so you must be willing to give it as well as to receive it.

Also, because of trust having to be a two -way thing, you need to devise ways of testing the other party’s trustworthiness, otherwise you may leave yourself vulnerable.


We all enjoy it when we are confided in by another, and they are willing to tell us about the difficulties that they have or the errors that they make as well as the good things that they do. It makes you realise that you’re a trusted person. Because openness is another of these two -way things, once you have established that the other person is also trustworthy, you can give them the great gift of your openness and this will help the relationship to prosper.


The feeling of affinity, or closeness that we have with others is one of our most valued commodities. Again, it is one of those things that can only flourish when it is given as well as received. It really is the glue that holds a relationship together.

Fostering and nurturing all of the items on this list of things that create good relationship is also the way to expand and grow affinity. If there is someone that you want to be close to, then you can create this best by fostering with them any of the other items on this list.


None of us are islands unto ourselves. There are always those times when we really need the support of others upon whom we can rely for help when we feel low, or are in need of help. If we cannot rely on those close to us, or they cannot rely upon us for loyal assistance when needed, then our relationship is going nowhere meaningful.

Ideas in common

When you are considering forming a close personal relationship with another, but are in disagreement on too many fronts with the ideas they hold, or you are in disagreement with them on issues of much importance to you both, then creating a good relationship is going to be difficult. Even if you do manage it by having other areas of agreement, the relationship will probably be fragile. There will be pitfalls that can be difficult to avoid, because it is impossible to predict when our disagreement is going to arise, or under what circumstances. It might well at some stage badly affect another relationship that we have and so strain our loyalties in other directions.

I think therefore that we must question the value of investing a lot of time in trying to create a close personal relationship in these circumstances. It’s also little use to feign agreement in order to gain favour, because it doesn’t really take long for others to discover the falsity.

On the other hand, when the relationship you want to form is more of a professional one, or some other working relationship, ideas in common are not so essential. You may have some very different ideas and aspirations from them, and perhaps share other ideas that are in common. But through communicating, you may find that they have qualities that you’re able to respect, and so will be able to create a good working relationship, and be able therefore to negotiate around any major differences that might arise in the future.


Understanding is one of the greatest gifts that we can give to someone else in any kind of relationship with them that we have.

Can you remember any time when you really needed someone to understand you, and when others could not, one other person came forward and was able to give you that, and what a difference it made.

If you can work to become a person who has real understanding of life, and is willing to pass that on to another when there is need, you will be sought after in any kind of relationship. You will also give to yourself one of the greatest gifts that life has to offer.

Generosity of spirit

This has two main elements. The first element is being willing to share in all sorts of ways with another, both in material ways, and other ways. It could include (if in appropriate circumstances at the time), any of the following as examples, and many more that I’m sure you could add yourselves:

Food; shelter; financial assistance; understanding; open communication; your time; your companionship.

The other element is goodwill. This includes wishing the best to happen for another person, as well as giving them a helping hand to achieve a good outcome when you’re able. It is the love and goodwill that we give to others that keeps the world going when all else looks gloomy.


Without the existence of respect, good relationship cannot exist. Although it is true that respect is something that has to be earned, and not just given, that idea can also lead to a bad error that’s destructive at both the personal level, and within the community at large.

The world is not perfect, no community is perfect, other people are not perfect, and we ourselves are certainly not perfect. Does this mean that nothing and nobody deserves any respect? We would not really want total perfection, for then there could be no challenge or adventure to be had in life. The existence of imperfection, misadventure, and even some amount of suffering are what make adventure and challenge possible in our lives. And indeed, of all things that human beings seem to need, challenge and adventure rule.

But just because someone, or the community, or society in general do let us down sometimes does not mean that no respect to them is due. This is because all of them, we ourselves included, have our strengths, and our weaknesses. And so it is, that while we may not have earned much respect in one direction, it does not mean that we deserve contempt on all fronts, for there are certainly other areas where we have earned our dues.

It is just the same with the community, with society at large, with the world, and so it is with any other person. Just because someone has not met your standard for respect in one direction doesn’t mean they deserve no respect in other places that you haven’t taken the time or effort to find out about.

Relationship is not just about our relations with other individuals, but also is to do with groups that we join, with the community, society at large, and all of the world.

One large element in the breakdown of society that leads to criminality is an almost total loss of respect for the world. The criminal sees little justice in society, and holds onto that to justify criminal actions. His life seems to have shown him that force rules, and that lying and cheating are how you can win and dominate. He hasn’t really experienced the other and more powerful side of life involved with real and loving relationships, and so follows a menu of the harsher rules of life that he has acquired. This leaves little room for the finer feelings of life or any real regard for others, unless they’re able to command his respect in some way that fits the harsh rules that he adheres to.

Just because injustice does happen, it’s a mistake to think that society deserves no respect. Proper justice happens too, and what the society has built over many years that does provide for us in so many ways deserves respect, despite any shortcomings. Those shortcomings are for us in our turn to do our part to help to improve.

Proper balance between compassion and not suffering fools gladly

This is not an easy item either to discuss, or to put into practise, because there will probably be as many different opinions as to what is a proper balance as there are people present. And to practise it is complicated by the fact that our emotions are quite actively involved, even vulnerable, in this aspect of relationship. Never mind, that should make for a lively discussion.

We may never be able to always get the balance right on this item, but the main thihg is for us to be aware of the issue, and so do the best we can with it.

All we can really indicate about it is that without the presence of a good amount of compassion for others, this world would indeed be a sorry place. The exercise of compassion is a quality that belongs to the territory of the deepest soul in the inner nature of a human being. On the other hand, suffering fools too much can waste really valuable time, and so impede, or even endanger progress with goals that are important and of real value. Nevertheless this is a question which each of us has to confront and arrive at our own decision upon from time to time. Too much of one, or the other may have unwanted consequences either to the ihher soul, or otherwise to our ability to attain desired and useful goals.

This completes our rundown on the subject of relationships. There are many other things that could be added to the list, but I think we’ve covered the most important ones. In any case, anyone who becomes proficient in all of the ones we have covered will most certainly have no difficulty with that most rewarding area of our lives that is the domain of relationships.

Sixth Session What kind of person do I want to become.

We are multi-level beings. The following is a rundown of the different modes of awareness that together go to make up a complete human being.

We are aware of, and are part of the physical level via our body.

We occupy the domain of our feelings within the level of our being that we know as emotional awareness and experience.

We can choose to occupy and act from either the level of awareness of lower mind, or from our higher mind. Most of us act sometimes from one, and sometimes from the other.

There is another mode of awareness that we call intuition.

Next is the level of awareness of the inner soul (not to be confused with what some call the emotional or animal soul).

Another level of awareness within us is that which is the origin of inspiration and creative genius.

Finally comes the level where our consciousness transcends the more usual levels of human awareness. Some call this spiritual awareness. Whatever it is, it is that domain of our being from where we may draw upon the most uplifting and empowering energies of the cosmos which may be experienced as a serene state of unity with all of existence.

As we go through life, we create who we are to become by how much we connect with or inhabit these various modes of consciousness.

There are some who rarely choose to occupy any of the modes beyond the lower mind level. There are those who are more comfortable occupying the mode of the intellect (a part of the higher mind) than being in the physical mode. There are those who are very well exercised and accomplished in the physical body mode, and are adept at sports.

On this subject a great lot depends upon which modes of awareness we mostly choose to occupy. We do that by what areas we choose to be interested and active within. And so it is that we create and evolve into the kind of person we are going to become.

It is probably wise to endeavour to occupy and exercise all of these modes in equal degree, so as to become a really well balanced person. But who can speak for another, because to achieve certain goals we may need to create some modes to be more dominant than others. It’s just not usually best to get too far out of balance with it, but the choice is entirely ours to make.

The rest of this session will be around other aspects of what sort of a person are we going to choose to become in our journey through life.

In our fourth session one of the subjects we looked at was about the choices that we make as we go through life. That subject is very closely related to the subject of this present section in the following way:

The choices that we make in our lives create the kind of person that we’re going to become.

So many people go through their whole lives drifting along making choice after choice, and never realising that they’re creating what they become. They somehow think that ‘circumstances’, or other people, made them like they are. If we examine closely, we can see that those things may play a part in the choices that we make, but we are the only ones who make the choice itself. We will be more effective in life if we realise this, because we don’t have to be pushed into what others try to make us choose to do, or to become.

In this section we will be making suggestions about what may be good or helpful choices to make in life. This is mainly to induce you all to at least explore, and to become aware of the possibilities before making up your own minds about any pathway in life that you may decide to choose.

There is a very fundamental choice that anyone can make. Which of the ways you choose on this one will have a major effect upon what you are to become. This world is full of problems, and it can never be perfect, but it is possible for us to help to create a better adventure here in this world. Our most fundamental choice ever, is are we going to be part of the problem, or part of the solution. We therefore can choose to help make this a better place or a worse one. Which do you choose?

Other possible choices ----You may choose (or choose not to):

1. Learn how to connect with qualities that come from the soul, such as:

A blissful sense of unity with everything

A sense of the brotherhood of all of mankind

Universal love


Care for the welfare of others

Connection with uplifting universal energies

A sense of benevolence towards the world at large

Ability to use the magic of forgiveness when needed

A sense of fulfilment and harmony that dissolves any feelings of depression or alienation

An understanding and insight into the things of life

A willingness to share power with others rather than the desire for power over others

2. You can choose whether or not you are going to keep a balance between the head and the heart, or in other words between the wisdom of the mind and the wisdom of the soul. (This is probably an advisable thing to do in the kind of world in which we live, but the choice must be yours).

3. You can choose a path of happiness and fulfilment by creating and following principles in life that are aligned with the integrity of who and what you are, and who and what you aspire to be.

4. You may choose between following the lower mind and its more selfish desires and wishes for power over others, or you can choose instead to centre within the higher mind territory with its broader, clearer vision and helpful attitudes.

In the end the powers of the higher mind will always outclass those of the domain of the lower mind which is also the holder of resentments, angers, a feeling of alienation from others, and a facility for misunderstanding and deception. It is also the holder of unhelpful and bad attitudes, and tends to seek revenge upon others and the world for their imperfections, but is unwilling to see its own.


This ends off our exploration of all of the possibilities from which we may choose for creating whatever kind of lives we want for ourselves in the future.

I hope that you will use and benefit from the self-help method given earlier for the clearing of stress, frustrations, anxieties, and any future upsets that you may suffer. Also likewise for the method given for the raising of morale.

Finally, I hope that you have enjoyed doing this course, and exploring all of the ideas and insights provided, and where possible, may pass them on to others.


The Author

Copyright Laurence Black, 17th July 2008.
For and on behalf of The Wholistic Education Foundation.
E-mail: meteorite@paradise.net.nz

Note: Permission to use this material, copy in part or in full is freely given on condition that full credit of origin and contact details are clearly stated.

Last updated on 5th February 2009.


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