In the trenches now for the first time as a beginning counselor, I am finding it gratifying and incredibly intense. This new challenge may be less glamorous than D/s sessions, yet in many ways it is a fitting extension of the interpersonal growth work which began for me in the dungeon.
I suppose I shouldn't be surprised that it has been books of my own choosing, not those assigned in my classes, which have really furthered my understanding of human nature. The topics of these books, such as lucid dreaming, neuro linguistic programming (NLP), enneagram personality system, and non-violent communication (NVC) are considered too left field, too new or too "pop psychology" to be included in the required coursework. It makes sense then that this would be where the real learning takes place, and that it would require self-motivation, initiative and creative research to find. The good stuff rarely ever just falls into your lap!
As I have continued on in my studies and practice, I am becoming more certain that my path will lead me towards a focus on life enhancement and optimal actualization, rather than pathology. While I feel privileged to be in the midst of such a role at the moment, my life has been so much about pursuing excellence and going beyond the baseline of success to an even higher level of fulfillment. I am looking forward to integrating the knowledge I have gleened from my eclectic explorations into a coaching and training role.