What Excites Us!

Episode 11 - What is Transpersonal Coaching with Erik House

Episode 11 - What is Transpersonal Coaching with Erik House

This episode is a very edited version of the conversation Erik House and I had. In the episode we discuss transpersonal psychology and how Erik uses it for coaching, as well as spiritual bypassing, ethics, healing and so much more. Erik House (he/they), is a life and relationship coach, along with being a spiritual guide and healer. He holds a MA in Transpersonal Psychology from Sofia University and works closely with people in the polyamorous, consensual non-monogamy.
As a coach, he helps individuals, polycules, and moresomes in digging down to find what their unmet needs are so that they can create the lives and relationships they’ve always wanted. In addition to coaching, he offers tarot and oracle card readings and energy healing His training includes, Usui Reiki Master/Teacher, IET Advanced, Magical Awakening Level 8.

Erik’s contact info:
Polyamory and CNM Word Search

The two Wikipedia articles I mentioned at the beginning of the episode:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Psychosynthesis https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transpersonal

We also Mentioned: Sword of Truth Comic - https://swordscomic.com/comic/LXXV/
John Welwood - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Welwood
Lara Bates who wrote The Men Who Hate Women
Bell Hooks - An amazing feminist writer


Gwyn 0:08
Hello and welcome to What Excites Us, the show that discusses sex and sexuality throughout time and place including the here and now. My name is Gwyn Isaacs, and in this episode I'm chatting with Erik House, he/they who is a life and relationship coach, along with being a spiritual guide and healer. He holds an MA in transpersonal psychology from Sofia University and works closely with people in the polyamorous and consensual non-monogamy communities. As a coach, he helps individuals poly cules and moresomes in digging down to find out what their unmet needs are, so they can create the lives and relationships they've always wanted. In addition to coaching, he offers tarot and Oracle Card readings, and energy healing. His training includes Usui Reiki master and teacher, I E T advanced and magical Awakening level eight, which I can honestly say I wish I had asked him about because I have no idea what most of those credentials are. But I am thoroughly intrigued. However, what we did talk about is fascinating. This episode focuses on transpersonal potentials, ethics, coaching styles, ego and healing, and lots of other stuff too, if you would enjoy listening to the two plus hour wild ride conversation that we had, where we also discussed the ills of our capitalist society, learning new skills later in life, a mini coaching session for me, our specific language and neuro divergences, and many, many other random and topical subjects, you can do that by subscribing to my Patreon. But to do that, you must type in the whole URL. And because Patreon does not allow searching for pages that are adult in nature, so that link is patreon.com/whatexcitesus. That's patreon.com/whatexcitesus. And now on with the show.

Hi, Erik. Oh, yes, I'm so honored and delighted that you wanted to do this with me what a treat.

Erik 2:39
Yeah, I was like, excited to hear that you were doing a podcast. So I was like, Well, yes. I won't get in on that.

Gwyn 2:44
So I was reading the Wikipedia stuff that you sent. Oh, my God.

Erik 2:51
Which one?

Gwyn 2:52
Yes, both of them. I can honestly say I didn't get through either of them.

Erik 2:59
That's not surprising.

Gwyn 3:01
And I'm not I'm not a dumb person. By any stretch. I'm certainly not a genius, either. There's a lot there. But before we go all the way into that. I I really liked the title that you came up with. Hmm, thank you. Do you remember what you wrote?

Erik 3:21
I think tossing the salad exploring the word terms of polyamory and transpersonal? I don't. I don't remember the all everything after the colon. But I remember. Which is, of course, an amusing thing to say after saying tossing the salad but,

Gwyn 3:39
Oh, it's gonna be like that. Yeah. All right.

Erik 3:42 Well, I was like, Ooh, I can I can make this a double entendre won't be a problem.

Gwyn 3:47
And honey to boot. I am a fan of all of the above. So yeah, tossing the salad, polyamory, transpersonal. And other. I don't remember the word you use, but basically the lingo of things that we don't know. Mm hmm. Tell me about that. What led you to that?

Erik 4:09
Well, started formulating because, like one of the first things that I did as my freemium to entice people to sign up for my email list, everybody, is I made a word search of polyamory terms, because most people, especially when they're starting out, it's a lot of words that no one yeah, not everyone agrees on what they mean, even in the in the communities around polyamory and consensual non monogamy. So just giving some simple terms or some simple definitions, and, you know, and if they want to, that can print it out, and they can circle things and be like, Oh, I'm learning. Just like back in high school or elementary school. I don't remember when people do word search.

Gwyn 5:00
Word searches are fun, like, I mean, they sell booklets at the grocery store for adults even. So you started off with the word search.

Erik 5:08
I have a master's in transpersonal psychology and everyone goes, What the hell is that?

Gwyn 5:14
Right? Because what the hell is that?

Erik 5:17
It's to me transpersonal is? Well, it's the exploration of the personal that goes both internally and externally. So say you've got an x and a y axis, that goes on for infinity in both directions. So transpersonal psychology covers both the vertical axis and the horizontal axis. So it's both about what's going on interpersonally inside of yourself, then trends, personally, what's going on with the people around you. And then also, Maslow's peak experience work was influenced by at most people's higher spiritual experiences, and then depth work and Shadow Work are also all kind of in the transpersonal realm,

Gwyn 6:02
that is a much clearer explanation than Wikipedia gave.

Erik 6:06
That is also so very true.

Gwyn 6:10
I did however, really like the fact that Jung called it the Uber. Uber personal,

Erik 6:17
sometimes you find it called spiritual psychology, but I was like, I like that. But for that term itself might be a little too laden for some people, even though it does address all the things that most people consider to be spiritual. This is a term that covers a little bit broader spectrum than that.

Gwyn 6:35
That makes a lot of sense. And it makes a lot of sense in terms of psychotherapy, because we are all products of what is happening inside as well as outside. Do you therapise?

Erik 6:48
I do. I do coaching, I'm not a therapist. Coaching is about working with healthy or healthy ish individuals and working on strengthening goals and meeting goals where therapy is a lot more internal, but even in helping people with me, helping them figure out their goals and such. Sometimes you encounter things that the person's like, I didn't know this thing that happened in high school caused me to be this way. So you know, you look at that you explore that a little. And then as I was starting my coaching program, we you move back to the present, and the future, you don't spend all your time looking at the past.

Gwyn 7:34
Where did you study what program?

Erik 7:36
I am actually still in a coaching program, the Synthesis Institute, and is focused on a coaching framework using Roberto as the Jolie's psycho synthesis, which is either a sub School of transpersonal psychology, or the school that kind of one of the schools that kind of founded transpersonal theory, in the first place, a lot of work of his work was focused on helping people express their will, which he viewed as different than will power. So you have your willpower, which is how you tuck things out. Often, when I'm talking to people and trying to explain his theory of will, there's a lot more focus on agency, how he talks about will, is our ability to make choice, and to then follow through with choice.

Gwyn 8:27
Interesting. So if I'm getting this right, Will is more about tuning into your interests and desires than willpower, which is forcing yourself to go through with something.

Erik 8:42
Yes, um, I would say that's a pretty accurate description of it. I'm not sure if everyone else in psycho synthesis would necessarily agree. Because like most professions, no one agrees on everything 100% of the time, but and then it's about learning to direct the will work learning to be like, Okay, this is something I'm committed to doing. And I'm going to follow through with it, it might be hard at times, and that's where maybe willpower comes in. But it's about taking the decision and being able to commit to it. And then as you also get feedback from your life and experience going okay, this might not have been the right choice, but now I know and then you can redirect your will with the feedback and the new information to apply it to the next step. Now that you have additional information.

Gwyn 9:39
Yeah, thank you for clearing that. That makes a lot of sense to me. You're a coach. Is that your primary objective in this realm? And are you doing it one on one coaching folks?

Erik 9:50
I primarily at the moment do one on one coaching I am open to doing coaching with molecules and moresomes. I haven't yet So those first groups will be the people who get to explore this as I explore it.

Gwyn 10:06
And do you do most of your coaching online?

Erik 10:08
Most of my coaching is done online. Yes.

Gwyn 10:11
And are you primarily interested in the polyamorous segment and people exploring that or...?

Erik 10:17
That's an excellent question. Yes. And I'm happy and willing to work with other people who just feel like they need some, some coaching in their life. Last year, I helped a coach and I coached them through a project of writing a book that's an exploration around kind of getting the will of what's your next step? How are you going to do this and then just going through the stages of helping them birth the project

Gwyn 10:46
So when you put yourself out as a coach, what kind of coach do you say you are?

Erik 10:50
I say that I am a life and relationship coach and that I focus on polyamorous and consensual non monogamy folk and whoever comes to my door knocking for coaching. I'm like, let's see if we can work together. Because, you know, sometimes it's like, yes, we'd be a great fit. And other times you're like, No, you need to go see my friend Gwyn, or whoever. So,

Gwyn 11:11
Right right there. They're better people for you. I am not that person. Yeah, that definitely happens. And in the pre recording form, you also mentioned tarot and other

Erik 11:23
Yes, I do Tarot, oracle cards on trained in a number of energy healing techniques.

Gwyn 11:29
And does that come into your coaching as well?

Erik 11:32 It does I have not quite figured out what my package is. But there is a package that I'm figuring it out, almost always when I do some tarot, there ends up being a little coaching conversation anyway. And I'm looking, looking at how in particular how to integrate energy healing with a coaching practice and how to make those things work together well for folks.

Gwyn 11:58
Do you find yourself doing readings, many sessions, most sessions, some sessions, no sessions?

Erik 12:04
some sessions, I fairly often keep it separate, because sometimes people are just like, I wonder Tarot reading. So it's like, okay, here you go have a Tarot reading. And sometimes as we're doing a session, sometimes I'll go, So how do you feel about doing this? And sometimes the answers that sounds great, and we break out tarot cards or whatever. Or and other times you're like, No, you know, not not this time. Maybe later, or no, that's not for me. And it's like, okay, yeah, that's fine. Part of you know, any kind of coaching is listening to your intuition. And sometimes your intuition is, let's listen to my intuition by using cards.

Gwyn 12:46
I like your logo, by the way. Thank you. Does it have meaning for you? Or is it just pretty?

Erik 12:51
Yes, it's a fractal heart. Because the catch phrase that I usually use it for, on the website, and all the other things is Love isn't finite, it's infinite. So a fractal heart represents that.

Gwyn 13:04
Yeah, I like that a lot. And fractals are super cool, too. It also ties back into that transpersonal psychology where you're looking at the outward and the inward. And the thing that I love about fractals is that it's always the same and always different, right? I remember this documentary, a really long time ago, because my mother recorded it on VHS, where it was looking at the coast of Maine, and then just kept getting closer and closer. And then you're looking at a grain of sand and it's basically the same image in different variations. Do you find that that is similar with transpersonal psychology?

Erik 13:42
Hmm. Yes, there's definitely some similarities like looking at from at the moment from just like just dysfunctional lens for a moment, if the things that we struggle with on a purely psychological level, are also the things that are going to crop up when we're dealing or not dealing with them on a on a spiritual level, as well. John Wellwood and a few other people that John Wellwood was a Buddhist psychologist created this term called spiritual bypass, which you might have heard of, which is when we're using spiritual experiences, to bypass our psychological issues, essentially, and those bypasses often have effects on our way of being this is an interesting one because I'm, I dislike the term law of attraction. I think there's better names for it than that. But people who rely on that too heavily and ignore this social economic effects that are also involved in everyday life and say, the reason people can't get out of poverty or it's just because of their mindset. That is like a form of spiritual bypass because there are other things in effect, beyond mindset that make it hard for people to be able to leave poverty behind. Mindset is a factor. But it's a small factor, which sometimes can open large doors, but being able to actually take the social economic issues, and being able to shift them, just because you have a positive attitude is probably not actually going to happen. So there's a, an occult historian Mitch Horowitz, who's written on he's written a number of fascinating books. And one of the things that he talks about is that often new thought or law of attraction, people don't have enough action, like they're not good at going, Ah, here's under, they're like, I'm just going to use my mind and solve these problems and don't actually do what the, the old Quaker expression of prey and move your feet. And he, I heard him on an interview once talking about how also, social organizers don't necessarily always have the vision slash mindset of what they want the world to actually be once the problem is solved. And he's like, You need to have both things, to make it to be able to make good solid progress.

Gwyn 16:38
Absolutely. So when you first said spiritual bypass, it made me think of this cartoon or meme, or I don't know, technically what it is anymore. It's all the same. That my partner shared with me, which is a guy on a quest for oh, for the sword of truth. He's on this massive quest for the sword of truth. And it carries him through several panels to find the sword of truth. And when he finally finds the sword of truth, he asks the sword of truth, what is my truth, and the sword says, You've been on this quest to avoid the shit you need to take care of at home.

Erik 17:16
Wellwood discusses like, not that we shouldn't be on a spiritual journey or anything like that. But he's says like, if you want to make a commitment to your spiritual journey, you also need to make a commitment to your psychological health. And look at your trauma, explore your trauma with a professional, and work on some of those things before you can really, and I'm paraphrasing him, obviously, before you can really delve in to your spiritual journey. Because if you're just using it as a way to shove your trauma down, what good is that going to do you? I find the readings of ethics from religious traditions, interesting. And go, Ah, this is an interesting way of thinking about this and how to go about living one's life. Is it going to am I going to take everything from this and apply it to my life? No, but there's definitely wisdom here that could be applied can be applied to how to go about living one's life.

Gwyn 18:25
Which leads me to the next thing that I was thinking about, that you mentioned before we chatted about psycho synEthis... psycho...

Erik 18:34
psycho synthesis.

Gwyn 18:37
Say that that's annoying. Yeah, psycho sythesis

Erik 18:40
I have a heck of a time saying it myself sometimes. And I'm studying it so.

Gwyn 18:46
So is it figuring out what things work for you and how to incorporate them into your being?

Erik 18:53
I would say that's a part of it definitely. Is a school originally a school of psychotherapy, it looks at a lot of aspects of the human psyche, our spiritual development and things like that, that a lot of schools of psychotherapy are like, who cares? As a Jolie, the gentleman, the doctor who developed it talks about it being a open system. So he has, he has I think it was like seven things that he was like, these have to be included in psycho synthesis training, but then include whatever else as long as it doesn't conflict with these other other rules. And I think part of it is that exploration, about finding what works for you, what helps you live a good life, that is also I think the word that he would probably use is of service. Service, of course also has some interesting capitalistic overtones. to it. So perhaps another way of looking at would be to live a good life that leaves the world, this is a long way of saying that but leaves the world in a better place than when you got here. But so often, we have moments, especially in our childhood, that make us feel other in the idea that we um who we are innately is not okay. One of the goals of psycho synthesis, both in coaching and in, in the therapy aspect of it, is to help people recognize their wholeness beyond, outside of the sense of being othered. I think there is definitely like he was saying that group that finding the things that are right, bringing them in and reintegrating them with ourselves. Sometimes it might be things we never knew about ourselves, but often, the things that we find out about ourselves later in life are because some part of our self was shut down shoved away, because a parent, a teacher, a sibling, whoever society at large, because society kind of sucks from time to time, or a lot of the time is tells us we're not right, we're not okay for being our innate self.

Gwyn 21:38
Right. Which is the whole goal of this show, is to provide examples and opportunities of basically voyeuristically seeing other people and experiencing other things so that everybody will come to understand that they are okay.

Erik 22:00
Late stage capitalism really has a lack of social consciousness, which potentially stems from a lack of ethics to kind of tie it back to what we were talking about earlier.

Gwyn 22:24
How do we as humans, I don't really expect you to have an end all be all answer, by the way, just sort of throwing this out there.

Erik 22:31
That would be amazing if I did.

Gwyn 22:32
Right? how do we as humans, square those ethical dilemmas that we have within ourselves that multiply to corporations. So for instance, I know Jeff Bezos is an asshole. And he spends his money badly. I still buy stuff on Amazon. And every time I do I get a little pang of guilt. But on the other hand, I have no idea where I'm supposed to find this one really specific thing that I need to have a more comfortable life today. Or tomorrow, or this week.

Erik 23:15
I think you, I think you were ready, as you're already presenting one of the ways to take a look at that.

Gwyn 23:21

Erik 23:22
Does your life need to be more comfortable?

Gwyn 23:25
Yeah, of course it does.

Erik 23:27

Gwyn 23:28 Because I'm human, and I want it.

Erik 23:32

Gwyn 23:34 Because it feels good.

Erik 23:36
Okay. So this is, of course, an interesting question. And this is where sometimes spiritual questions get funky, or psycho spiritual questions get funky. When you're looking at ADHD, where there is executive dysfunction and things like that. And ADHD often has a strong root in pleasure. One of the ways you address the disorganized the disorganization, is by rewarding the pleasure centers of the brain. And once they're, once they're happy, you can go ah, reorganize some of the things and everything starts clicking in a normal manner, sometimes there so as I was saying, here's the one of the larger questions. Sometimes you hear this in Buddhism, you find this in other traditions also, why can't you be uncomfortable? What is it about discomfort, and this is comes to in particular is an interesting aspect of American society, especially white American society. Is this strong uncomfortability with being uncomfortable, and it goes to the way that we numb ourselves videogames, don't get me wrong, love video games, Love TV, I enjoy those things. And yet sometimes I have to take a moment and go, Okay, what am I avoiding by watching four hours of Netflix in a row?

Gwyn 25:17

Erik 25:17
What is the thing that I'm not addressing?

Gwyn 25:22

Erik 25:23
And it that comes back to why. So I'm glad you bought whatever it is that you bought. But then one of the ways that we need to potentially who can potentially start to address that look at those problems is, why do I feel I need this? What is what is this comf what's what comfort thing is this, what need is this trying to fulfill? Is there another way I can fulfill this need, I'm getting a new paddle, because I want to because, and, you know, the first level is because I want a new paddle. The second level is because I think it would sound great when I am, you know, hitting my partner's bum with it. But sometimes what's underneath there is I'm worried because that we've not been playing as much, and what that means for our relationship. And instead of actually sitting down, looking at that, we get the paddle and continue to maybe you get a little extra play, because now you have a new toy. But then then the habit that whatever it is that is causing the play, to not really happen, just comes back. Because you haven't taken the time to look at that uncomfortable thing. And tried to figure it out.

Gwyn 27:09
I think that on the whole, that you absolutely called it that Americans, particularly white Americans are extremely uncomfortable with discomfort, to the point that people will fill a room with conversation, or not do something just because of a mild discomfort as opposed to the joy that they would get from getting over it. Much like my motivation issue is that getting started is the problem. It's the discomfort of making myself sit in focus, which can be quite uncomfortable sometimes.

Erik 27:42
Yeah. And that's not to discount people's biochemical issues. It comes down to taking internal stock of ourselves, and being willing to admit why we're making the choice. It might be I, you know, I have I'm experiencing discomfort. I want to solve that discomfort by action by purchasing this thing. Because I do not have the time, energy to address the underlying cause of the problem. It's whether it comes down to whether we want to continue to lie to ourselves about why we're making the choices. It's about being honest with yourself about why you're choosing to feed that beast still. You've got to two separate beasts, you've got the Amazon beast, and you've got the beast that at the moment, you're still you're choosing to be like, can't take don't have the energy or time to resolve this, which is fine. Sometimes say it's a problem with your partner, you don't have the time or the energy to sit down, have the conversation, go to couples therapy, all you can do at the moment is slap a bandage on it and hope the bleeding stops.

Gwyn 29:08
That is absolutely a valid thing to acknowledge that it's usually more than two beasts. And there are that there are

Erik 29:18
A plethora of beasts

Gwyn 29:19
A myriad of things going into virtually every decision we make. And and that comes from the tiny I don't know where I'm going to find a threeway light bulb to our fish food. That was the last thing I bought. I don't know where there's, like Petsmart any better than Amazon? No, not really. So it's more than that. And there's usually 12 other things going on. Besides Is it convenient? Does it stop the bleeding from those surface things to the depth that you were pushing with the why and the why and the why which is always a good technique humans always ask yourself why 12 times or seven or three or 38 whatever. Whatever number works for you, whatever number it gets to the depth of the answer, because we are complex individual beings. And we live in a complex society, that it's never black or white. There's always, God help, me 150 Shades of Grey. And, and, and there's more to it. And ethics is a field of study because there's more to it. There isn't just the one thing, there isn't a simple answer. Do you find that when you're with clients, you go deep like this?

Erik 30:42

Gwyn 30:43

Erik 30:44
Yeah. I do.

Gwyn 30:49
I mean, for my experience, some some clients want that, and some don't. With whatever it is, whatever aspect of coaching you're talking about. Some folks like it I tell my story, some folks don't want to know anything about me.

Erik 31:05
Yeah. For the coaching, I think it really depends on A. what they're wanting to explore. And then also what they're able to explore, like coaching, and therapy, but we'll stick with coaching at the moment, sometimes is about pushing people outside of their comfort zone, not pushing, encouraging them to step out and live the more fulfilling life that they could be living.

Gwyn 31:36
Beautiful reframe.

Erik 31:37
Yeah, thank you. And sometimes that means like, you have to ask questions, or have them look at things in ways that they didn't want to or haven't been able to. And this is where the intuition aspect, because most coaches they might not be intuition might not be the term that they use. But intuition and empathy come into play in knowing what can be pushed, and the person can benefit and the world, in a macro sense, the world can benefit from this person's new point of view, or what is going to actually potentially cause harm. Coaching as an unlicensed profession. My opinions coaches have to be in particularly aware of the fact that not all coaching schools, not all coaching questions, not all things along that line, are right for every individual client that come to us. And we have to be aware to not be causing harm as we're encouraging growth. There is a tendency in coaches and all helping professions, most all, probably all, to want to help our clients so much. And this kind of goes back to spiritual bypass that we're willing to extend ourselves beyond what we should probably be extending ourselves to. And this like, well, like Wellwood was talking about can be a way that we're just shoving our own trauma down, instead of going to a therapist or doing whatever we need. And this also goes back to what we were talking about discomfort and our uncomfortability of our discomfort with being uncomfortable. We don't take it sometimes we don't take our therapy, take it out, get therapy, trauma, and go, Oh, hello. How are you? Nice to see you. Let's, let's see what we can do to get you a little bit smaller. Yeah, like, it's about the awareness of sometimes it's the awareness of our own issues as they that come up in the coaching session. I've had it happen, where the person's talking about experience, and I'm like triggered or whatever, you know, like my own story starts to come up. And I'm not paying attention anymore to what's being said in front of me. And in coaching, and in life, we have to be like, Wait a minute, this isn't about this. We have to in psycho synthesis in particular, there's a few techniques to help one, leave that to the side or leave that because it's not about repressing, it's just like, not right now. I'll come back to you in a minute. I have to be with this person in the moment about the experience that they're having. Not about my memory of when my mother or whoever said something similar to me at the same age that this person had their experience or whatever.

Gwyn 34:55
Right. It is important to be able to recognize and then tell it to go sit down over there. Well, we'll talk to you later, right now, we're talking to you.

Erik 35:06
And that's why, like in ICF, coaching, you have a trainer, you have a mentor, things like that, so that after your session, maybe not immediately, obviously, immediately, but you can then go to someone and be like, Hey, this is a thing that happened when I was coaching with this person. And they can be like, Ah, so here are some techniques to help you do address that. Here are some ways for you to coach yourself, or ways to be present in that moment, so that your client is getting you.

Gwyn 35:40
The full benefit of you being present for them. But we are human, it's important to recognize that we are fallible, and we do things. Hopefully, as coaches, we have at least learned to use that experience to figure out how to do it better.

Erik 35:57
And as you're saying, We are humans sometimes I have said to clients, I'm sorry. I had a moment, I missed what you said, I'm sorry that I was not present with you, as you were saying that.

Gwyn 36:10
And I think that that's also a really great example of teaching through meta by demonstrating by example, and that it's okay to make mistakes. Because I don't know, I've I've recently had a spate of clients who had a really hard time acknowledging their, their challenges, not that they had them, but when they were happening in the moment. And so it's sort of fresh in my mind. It's like, oh, well, I make mistakes all the time. Let me show you the many ways that I have fucked up just in the past 20 minutes. Which I think is a very useful, it's useful for me to see. So I assume that it's useful for others.

Erik 36:57
I think that, again, comes back to, as you said, like they have a hard time seeing their behavior as it's happening. And let me ask a question, do they have the awareness of, oh, I shouldn't have necessarily done that, like, after the fact?

Gwyn 37:18

Erik 37:19
Sometimes? Okay.

Gwyn 37:21
And, you know, and like, a few clients, it's not one person,

Erik 37:25
Right. Of course, yeah. There's various around, and not necessarily just yours, just like in a larger coaching context, when that is happening, how that relates to their discomfort with being uncomfortable.

Gwyn 37:41
Hmm, yeah, that's a good question. And something I'm gonna ruminate on, the next time it comes up.

Erik 37:47
I know that I sometimes, I'm, I know, sometimes, I know that I don't like to be wrong. I've gotten better about being wrong. Still not great about it. And I know some of where that all comes from in my past. In particular, it's a thing about, for me, it's not necessarily even being wrong. I don't like being told that I'm wrong about something. When in particular, I know I'm actually right. About thing. And I think that's the thing that many people have on some level or another. I know for me, that is probably a little bit bigger than the general population, shall we say? There, it comes back again, to a discomfort with being uncomfortable. And one of the techniques I've had to use is, does it matter? Does it matter that this person is wrong about the thing, and I'm right about the thing? Sometimes, it doesn't matter. And I can let it go. Sometimes it does matter. And I have to let it go, because like it can't move the person around. Like we were talking about Chick fil A earlier. Sometimes the part of me that knows I'm right. And those the person is not right. Can't let it go even though it doesn't matter. And again, it becomes a matter of sometimes I know this in the moment, I'm just like, Okay, we're riding this train, and I'm going to get to figure out this later on. And then sometimes it's like realization after the fact. That didn't matter in the least. Why was that a hill I needed to die on around this thing. There I know it's an exploration of that discomfort. Why? Because I find a comfort in being right about the thing. Why can't I sit with the discomfort of why can't I find solace or comfort in knowing that I'm right and just accepting that, and letting it all unfold in other ways.

Gwyn 40:03
Right? Not needing to prove that you're right to the other person and having them acknowledge that you are right.

Erik 40:11
Right. Yeah, exactly.

Gwyn 40:13
I think that you're right.

Erik 40:16
Thank you, that feels nice.

Gwyn 40:20
That a lot of it hinges on being uncomfortable, and especially, I am not a man. But I have seen this more with men, in particular smart men, who perhaps put a lot of value on their intellectual intelligence, and so that it becomes a genuine wound, if it is questioned, or proven to be not accurate. That is truly supposition from nothing more than my general experience. I have not been trained in this, it is just what I see.

Erik 41:00
I like I like your term general wound, I find your term general wound interesting in particular around that. Because, yes, the ego gets bruised. And it becomes so interesting. And I know that I'm not always great about this, again, how men, in particular, white men respond to getting their ego bruised. I know, as I said, I'm not always great about this, I've gotten better, I can get better still about it. And again, it goes back to that discomfort. Why does my intelligence matter so much? That to be shown, especially in particular, when the person definitely is wrong? And I've had these moments that I've seen, and I've seen other guys have this moment, and I've caused this moment to other guys. And some of them caused it to me. And I've seen women cause it. It's always also interesting how guys respond to another guy being like, No, you're wrong on that thing, and being and showing how they're wrong. And then a woman telling it, show it and trying to show them how they're wrong. Whoo. That's, that's a whole other episode just in that one thing? Why does it matter so much, that my being wrong about something causes me such discomfort, that I can't accept it?

Gwyn 42:44
I think it's identity, I think that a lot of men who are intellectually intelligent, put a lot of their identity into that intellectually, that that becomes who they are. That is one of the more driving forces of their being. And and more than just the ego getting wounded, that it feels like a chink in who they are as a human.

Erik 43:12
And this is where some of the work in psycho synthesis comes in. Because in psycho synthesis, and spiritual traditions and things like that, there is an aspect of ourself, that is whole and complete, beyond the personality when we have our identity, so tied into our intelligence, or whatever, that being wrong causes us such distress. That why are we so identified with that part? What is it about our intelligence about those things that become so important that we can't remember that there is a part of ourselves that exists beyond that, that is whole and complete, beyond the fact that we were wrong.

Gwyn 44:13
I have a thought?

Erik 44:14

Gwyn 44:16
I think that a big part of that has to do with societal norms, that because our society places such a value on that type of intelligence, that if a person happens to have that, that they want to cling to that because it's not just their own cells and their family units and their their other social organizations. It's all of our specific civilization at the moment that values that and therefore, they can be a part of what is good in air quotes in the world. And so it's not just their identity, it's their identity in relationship to the rest of their world.

Erik 45:00
And along that line. Have you read Laurie Bates's Men Who Hate Women? Fascinating, upsetting, disturbing, well done book on incels and, and that whole collection of things. People think things as in movement, people as in humans. And as you were saying there's societal and other things that become so important to the identity, that anything that challenges it is unacceptable.

Gwyn 45:39
It feels like a bigger threat than just being wrong on a math quiz or what have you. It feels like a threat to their whole being.

Erik 45:49
Right. And there's the thing. So, Bell Hooks, the feminist woman of color, who writes, has written a number of fantastic books on feminism and patriarchy and things like that. One of the things she discusses in a few of her books, but in particular, The Will to Love is how patriarchal, capitalistic society also creates othering for men. It encourages and enforces a divorcing of the emotional self. This also ties into the comfort of discomfort, because emotions, especially if you are a guy, raised in a very traditional male dominated way of looking about the world, emotions are not an acceptable thing, except for like one or two of them, one of them being anger.

Gwyn 46:44
Right. You can be angry, and you can be joyful, but that's it.

Erik 46:48
And it's only certain expressions of joy.

Gwyn 46:51

Erik 46:51
Usually, you can't be like, those flowers are so beautiful, or things like that, or like all the people who were making fun of the double rainbow guy years ago, That was an expression of joy from a man that was viewed as unacceptable. There is this larger need for our society, in our society, to move towards this remembrance of the whole self, this whole being, the higher self, whatever term one wants to apply to the soul, whatever that is, whole, unique and complete, beyond the trappings of our personality. And one of the things in psycho synthesis is called dis identification, and then self identification. So you dis identify, you do a process to remember that you are more than your thoughts, your emotions, your body, your role in society and such. And then there's a project of identifying with this sense of completeness of wholeness that exists beyond your personality, beyond your experiences that I would say is eternal, other people in psycho synthesis might not so this eternal aspect of self that exists beyond society beyond the wounding of our childhood, or the wounding of our present even often we talk about, like the childhood traumas and how those things are what divorce us from experiences, I think there are events that can happen in adulthood can either reinforce the othering or make us feel a new sense of otherness that require work to address.

Gwyn 48:59
I wholeheartedly agree, having experienced several pieces of trauma from not quite adulthood, late teens into oh, I don't know couple years ago that have dramatically shaped who I am and things that I care about. I appreciate that you are specifically taking on this type of work to help people with one on one it's not light work. Having chatted with you a bit I have the feeling that you're comfortable with digging into the to the depth.

Erik 49:37
Usually, but of course there are moments where I'm uncomfortable with it and then I get and then I have to sit with it and be like why am I uncomfortable with it?

Gwyn 49:44
Right but you're willing to do that. That's huge. I mean, just that is huge. You are actively taking clients.

Erik 49:50
I am actively taking clients.

Gwyn 49:53
And how do people find you?

Erik 49:54 They can find me on Instagram at lovemultipliescoaching my website is in a state of flux at the moment, but there will be a link on there to find my website and they can email me at info@lovemultipliescoaching.com. I will have a freemium that I'm going to share the link to to you so that you can have it. And if you want, download it and sign up for my email list, you can do that too.

Gwyn 50:24 I will, I will, because I love word searches, especially ones about polyamory and that sort of thing that sounds wicked fun. Thank you so much, EriK, for being on the show. And what I like to do is end the interview by asking what excites you?

Erik 50:42
Hmm. What excites me at the moment is just the prospect of helping people become more themselves.

Gwyn 50:52
Ooh, I like that.

Erik 50:55
Thank you. I like it too.

Gwyn 50:58
Clearly, it's what excites you. And what the work that you are doing in the world. So excellent. Win win win for everyone.

Erik 51:09
It was a great experience. I loved it.

Gwyn 51:11
I'm so glad, I'll talk to you later. Yep.

Erik 51:14

Gwyn 51:15
Bye. Well, we never did circle back to polyamory. But what did y'all think of my conversation with EriK House? The link to his groovy polyamory word search is in the show notes as is his contact info and website, which is lovemultipliescoaching.com I would love to hear your thoughts on this episode, and any other feedback you have. You can review the podcast at places that take reviews like Apple podcast, where you can join the Patreon or you can go to whatexcitesus.com and click the record button and tell me anonymously. You could also use that button to tell me a story or ask a question, pitch yourself as a guest, or just random sound art. I'd love to hear from you no matter what it is. As long as you're not being a creep. Please don't be creepy. What Excites Us is produced, edited and hosted by me, Gwyn Isaacs. All music is used under the Creative Commons Attribution license. This week that includes The Vendetta by Stephen Kartenberg, Let me talk Carol by Josh Woodward, Harmony by Polyplus, and this is Swing Electronic Bass by SkiDoo. tickle.life hosts this and many other podcasts about sex and sexuality, as well as having lots of great other content. Thanks for listening, you rock and I appreciate you Description: This episode is a very edited version of the conversation Erik House and I had. In the episode we discuss transpersonal psychology and how Erik uses it for coaching, as well as spiritual bypassing, ethics, healing and so much more. Erik House (he/they), is a life and relationship coach, along with being a spiritual guide and healer. He holds a MA in Transpersonal Psychology from Sofia University and works closely with people in the polyamorous, consensual non-monogamy. As a coach, he helps individuals, polycules, and moresomes in digging down to find what their unmet needs are so that they can create the lives and relationships they’ve always wanted. In addition to coaching, he offers tarot and oracle card readings and energy healing