A differentiated self is described by Bowen (1976) as a solid self, and a fused self is called a pseudo self. The solid self knows what it needs and desires, while the pseudo self reacts to those around it. In an unhealthy relationship, two pseudo selves come together and fuse into each other, one person losing and the other person gaining self. The solid self, however, maintains its individuality and does not merge. The solid self has beliefs, opinions, convictions and life principles. The pseudo self is a product of emotional pressure. The solid is not. People with weak transparency muscles live within a pseudo self. In plain English, this is a false version of you. It seeks other people’s approval and validation. You live in Pseudo Self because it gives you a sense of security. It allows you to hide and live in disguise. But most importantly, the Pseudo Self straps a muzzle on your gifts. By gifts, I don’t necessarily mean talents. I mean what makes you different than any other person on the planet. In screenwriting, they say what’s most important is your voice. Everyone has a story to tell, but it’s your voice that makes your script stand out from the rest. For example, Quentin Tarantino has a very strong voice. It comes out in his dialogue and his non-linear way of storytelling. Being your solid self gives you a voice.

Author of “I Used To Be A Miserable F*CK” and “Single. on Purpose.” IG: theangrytherapist

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