“Everyone has some metaphysical premise - some usually unconscious opinion to which he clings very dearly – which lies at the root of his psychological security.
Almost the only thing that a [coach] or therapist can do... is to persuade the individual to act upon his false premise – in certain consistent directions until he sees his mistake.
To do this, the individual must be drawn into a game.”
– Alan Watts
Real Problem Solving
Whether it's lack of purpose, financial issues, anxiety, a difficult decision or full-blown depression – my experience is that coaching or therapy is of very limited use.
It is not the core problem if you've never uncovered the metaphysical premise from which you live.
You might find a way to resolve your current problem, but only lead to new problems. Usually you pay interest too, for not resolving the root cause.
At age 35, I had studied for six years, had a brief career as a professional deejay, worked as a consultant in various roles, traveled a lot, attempted to find a PhD study position, launched three start-ups and initiated a foundation for a non-profit bank.
Each time I changed my career, it felt exciting. Yet, after a while this feeling always faded and real satisfaction never came. Not even with the successful episodes in my life.
Here I was, late 2016 – technically broke, quite unhappy, disillusioned with my latest project and... desperate to break the cycle I had been going through over and over.
A few intense months later, after retreating from social life with just books, a note book and recordings of the late Alan Watts, I figured out why nothing had worked before and it changed my life.
The long-term solution
What I finally grasped – and what so many writers had tried to convey to me – is that hardly anything about life can be improved if you live with a false sense of self.
It entails knowing what you consider the good life, but even more so why you consider it so, which eventually brings you to a question as basic as "what do I consider self, and why?".
When you sink your teeth in such questions for a few days, you're probably in for a surprise. I sure was and so have the people I've been working with.
You'll instantly know what is real to you, what is authentic to you and which parts of your true nature you're not acknowledging (the root cause of your problems).
Some of your questions and problems will instantly fade, while for others you'll have clarity about what to do next – the challenges ahead that will liberate you even further.
Private Immersion Program
After my own process, I've developed a method of helping others to find out their core beliefs. I do so by means of Socratic questioning – talks to uncover of one's beliefs and to reflect any contradiction I find.
Based on one's frame of reference and potential blind spots, I make reading suggestions for passages from my own collection of books, to reflect on in our dialogues.
Besides that, I use simple training exercises to become more comfortable with discomfort, as it enables one to become more honest about their deepest beliefs and drives. And, to act upon their insights, should these involve inconvenient truths.
There's not right or wrong, just real or unreal. Whatever turns out to be real to someone, the result is always the same: liberation, clarity and excitement.
Each program begins with a 4-5 day immersion, conducted away from their usual environment, usually in the South of Europe. If further assistance is desired, it often involves an additional multi-day immersion and/or (online) follow up sessions.
Full program rates typically range from €1,200 to €4,000.
“Without a doubt, involving Richard has been the best investment for my personal development in the last decade. His methods are simple, yet they reveal everything you (unknowingly) struggle with in life."
Making up your mind about Waking up your mind
For choosing a coach, guru, therapist and even a book for self-development, you actually need to know one essential thing: your mental model and theirs. If these don't match, it's likely to end up in a rope pulling contest.
After working with dozens of people, I noticed the need for an objective book to figure out the most relevant aspect of your mental model: the nature of consciousness.
The book will explain why this is most relevant, which options you have and how to make up your mind.