and some new words
I recommend you take a few minutes now to understand important new distinctions and essential new words. However, if you want to come back to these later, you can skip this section and go onto a table of distinctions, principles, and techniques.
Distinctions and toxic words
Most of life's mischief, both within ourselves and in our relationship with others, would be removed if we were clear about the distinctions of the words that we use. I use the phrase “toxic words” to designate those words that are often used in a toxic way. That is, they create problems for ourselves or others because of their lack of clarity and/or built-in assessment of something being either being good or bad.
“Right” as a toxic word
Here's an example of a word often used toxically: consider the word “right,” as in “making the right choice.” I often hear a client say, “I want to ensure I am making the right choice.” When I ask, “By what measure, by what criteria, would you know whether or not you had made the ‘right choice’?”, most often my client cannot answer...even though, when they originally spoke, they assumed they knew (and that I knew) what they meant by the words “making the right choice.” Nothing was further from the truth.
Either get clear about the words you use or, as a minimum, get clear about their lack of clarity
Throughout AskDwightHow you will find that I often put emphasis on clarity about the distinctions of specific words and phrases or, at least, to create clarity about their unclarity. Otherwise, you will not be able to understand how to effectively make many of the changes that you would like to make. We take this idea of needed clarity for granted when giving instructions about how to do something physically. if I don’t share a clear understanding with my health advisor of which type of supplement I need to take (both of us thinking we’re clear, but we’re not), then I am not likely to get the desired results. The same need for clarity applies when giving and following suggestive/instructive methods for changing relationship with oneself or with others. Clarity about key distinctions is essential! I have also created two sections of AskDwightHow specifically devoted to establishing clear distinctions for certain words I use and/or creating clarity about the unclarity of many of the words that are in common use. One section is the glossary. The other section is called toxic words.
Distinctions for new words and phrases
AskDwightHow introduces some words and abbreviations. These may seem a bit awkward at first, but, as you get used to them, you’ll find them essential.
Undoing fear (worry, indecision, shyness, stress, perfectionism, and so on)
Many other words (other than undoing) could have been selected to label the elimination of certain types of issues. For example, instead of using the phrase, "undoing worry," any of the following could have been used:
1. resolving worry
2. disappearing worry
3. removing worry
5. ending worry
I decided upon the phrase "undoing worry" since undo implies reversing what has already been done, which is always the method when dealing with resisted fear. Undoing fear means returning fear to its original, unresisted state. Or consider the phrase, "undoing stress." Since almost all stress is an expression of resisted fear, undoing stress means undoing the resisted fear and returning it to its natural state, a state in which you have no stress. You will find this special meaning in all cases where I use the word "undo," as in undoing indecision, undoing perfectionism, and undoing guilt.
"Now" denotes that part of each one of us whose job and interest is to take of our now and/or near now, to have a now and our near-term now that feels good, that feels comfortable, to maximize our happiness and minimize our unhappiness right now. This is the part of us that easily goes with the feeling or thought of the moment, doing its best to take care of now. Whenever wanting to indicate more specifically the Now as that part of yourself or that part of another person, you can denote that part more clearly by using that person’s name in the word construction. Example: Dwight-Now (denoting my Now).
Usage example: Her Now kept distracting her from her studies, tempting her with other fancies that seemed more attractive.
"Next" denotes that part of each one of us whose job and interest is to take care of our future, to have our future be good, where there is more happiness and less unhappiness in our projected future. This is the part of us that imagines, makes promises, makes plans, worries, and lives in hope, intention, and anticipation for our future. Whenever wanting to indicate more specifically the Next as that part of yourself or that part of another person, you can denote that part more clearly by using that person’s name in the word construction. Example: Dwight-Next (denoting my Next).
Usage example: Her Next thought she should study for her test for another hour. But her Now wanted to chat with her friends.
"Oneself" denotes that part of each of us whose job and interest is to take care of ourselves and to support their own best interests, both for our Now and for our Next. Our Oneself also wants to express ourselves freely and authentically. Whenever wanting to indicate more specifically the Oneself as that part of yourself or that part of another person, you can denote that part more clearly by using that person’s name in the word construction. Example: Dwight-Oneself (denoting my Oneself).
Usage example: His Oneself was reluctant to loan his friend $200. But his Others kept pushing him to be more generous.
"Others" denotes that part of each one of us whose job and interest is to take care of others, protect others, support others, please others, and avoid being blamed or disapproved of by others, both for our Now and for our Next. Our Others wants also to satisfy its need for belonging. Whenever wanting to indicate more specifically the Others as that part of yourself or that part of another person, you can denote that part more clearly by using that person’s name in the word construction. Example: Dwight-Others (denoting my Others).
Usage example: His Others felt compassion for their suffering and wanted to do something about it. Yet his Oneself was concerned about not taking care of himself.
Special note: Now, Next, Oneself, and Others (always capitalized) are all third-person, singular nouns. As such, they will require an appropriately matching verb. This may sound a bit awkward at first, as in, “My Others is wanting to agree with you,” as contrasted with, “My Others are wanting to agree with you.” The first example is the correct verb choice.
Don’t conflate these distinctions (Now, Next, Oneself, and Others) with distinctions like Freud’s id, ego, and superego. It’s best to consider these new distinctions without comparing them to others.