Imagination is the divine force, the great healer, the transformer.

by | September 30, 2019

Dr. Zwig Inner Work Exercises and Contemplations
It’s common to view our problems as solid “things” we can capture, diagnose, label, and target with a “medicine.”

This is a misunderstanding.

A problem isn’t a “thing”—it’s an intangible, fluid process driven by meaning.

It originates in the deep layers of the psyche where our subconscious dreams up ways to communicate its contents to us.

It sends us negative thoughts, depressed moods, panic attacks, doubts, fears, and nightmares.

These bad experiences feel as real and solid as can be, but, in fact, they’re dreamlike processes.

We can fabricate whatever diagnostic label or rational explanation we want, and we can medicate ourselves so that we don’t notice what’s happening, but none of this has anything to do with the process itself.

To find out what’s really going on we have to use the same currency our problems use–we have to speak their language.

And what’s this language? The imagination.

Before our problems manifest in real world ways they exist as unconscious images, sounds, and feelings.

They’re like a movie we don’t yet see, hear, or feel.

In order to expose the film and grok its meaning for our life and growth, we have to shine the light of our consciousness upon it.

We can do this by letting go of our fixed interpretations of our troubles, and entering into the stream of our imagination.

The goal isn’t to visualize what we want but rather to discover what’s being asked of us.

A simple start:

1. Choose a problem to work on.

2. Describe how it feels.

3. Make a picture in your mind of the feeling.

For example, your depression might look like a heavy boulder you drag around or a dead lake.

Your anxiety might look like a scared mouse or a hurricane.

Your inner critic might look like a mean parent or a teacher.

4. Let the image unfold into an inner movie and follow where it goes.

Don’t direct it with what you feel is going on or even what you want to occur; let it happen on its own.

5. See if your movie reveals something that helps you learn about your process.

Life is real but it’s driven by dreaming!

Dr. Zwig
©2023 Dr. Adam Zwig

Meet Dr. Adam Zwig—psychologist, musician, podcaster, author, and educator. He holds a PhD in clinical psychology, has had 9 Top Ten hit singles on the U.S Adult Contemporary charts, and is an internationally renowned workshop leader and lecturer. He has been featured on Billboard, SiriusXM Radio, CBS Radio, and many other stations, and in People Magazine, SPIN, Pollstar, and many other publications. Dr. Zwig has released 7 albums, and his music can be heard on National TV, including NBC, Fox, and Fuel TV. He has more than 160 million views on YouTube, over half a million social media followers, and has scored in the top 10% of rock artists streamed on Spotify in 2022. His forthcoming book, Your Problem Is Your Teacher, shows how life problems are not pathological but rather personal growth processes trying to happen. His podcast, The Dr. Zwig Show, posts new episodes every Wednesday.

DISCLAIMER: The content contained herein is for inspirational, educational, and entertainment purposes only. Nowhere in this Blog does Dr. Zwig diagnose or treat a viewer with any kind of psychological, mental, emotional or physical disorder as might be diagnosed and treated by a personal psychologist or other professional advisor. The content is not intended to be a substitute for working with a therapist but is for the purpose of educating the viewer about new approaches to working on personal problems. Viewers should use this Blog at their own risk, with the understanding that Dr. Zwig is not liable for its impact or effect on its users. Viewing this Blog does not form a practitioner/client relationship between the viewer and Dr. Zwig. Dr. Zwig is not responsible for any action taken by a viewer based upon any information in this Blog. Never disregard professional medical advice or stop taking psychiatric medication based on something you have read on this Blog without a doctor’s supervision and ongoing therapeutic support. Dr. Zwig is an educator, author, and life coach in the U.S., and a psychotherapist in Switzerland. He holds a PhD in clinical psychology. He is also a rock n roll musician.