Most of us think of ourselves as a unified whole. However, we are actually composed of numerous inner aspects called Selves, also referred to as sub-personalities. Selves are universal; everybody has them. Each Self has its own feelings, thoughts, opinions, point of view, memories and perspective.
All Selves fall somewhere on a spectrum between primary and disowned. Some of our selves are louder and more vociferous and some of our selves operate under the radar, often craving more influence. When a self falls on the primary side of the spectrum, it tends to be more familiar, more dominant, and a driving force in our daily life. When a self falls on the disowned side of the spectrum, it tends to be more hidden, less accessible, or even untapped.
Beginning to understand our Selves is like learning a universal language. Whether we are relating to ourselves or others, the focus is not just on what is being said, but also, which self is saying it. This focus invokes a richer understanding, a more skillful objectivity and compassion for both self and others.