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You Are No Longer A Victim Of Life But A Student Of Life – Exclusive Interview With Philip Golding

Phil has been on his own personal development journey since 1984. He overcame chronic depression and PTSD, which motivated him to continue to learn about emotional healing, psychology, and self-awareness. Phil’s qualifications and experience cover general psychology, existential/spiritual/transpersonal psychology and mindfulness and a post-graduate degree in psychology. With his personal and professional experience, Phil developed the powerful and effective mindfulness-based “Five Step Process,” which has been the foundation of his psychotherapy practice and mindfulness/self-awareness teaching. Phil is also an author and is in the process of completing the second edition of his book, “Five Steps to Freedom.”

Portrait of a man at beach with houses in the background.

Phillip Golding, Inner Harmony Counselling and Therapy

Introduce yourself! Please tell us about you and your life, so we can get to know you better.

I live in sunny Brisbane, Australia, with my partner and her teenage son. I have my own counselling clinic at a nice location next to the Brisbane River, not far from the city center. Walking in nature with my partner is one of the things I most enjoy, along with leading self-awareness groups.

What is your business name and how do you help your clients?

My business name is Inner Harmony Counselling and Therapy. I am fully qualified in behavior-change psychology, with a strong emphasis on positive, compassion-focused, and transpersonal psychology. I have been a professional psychotherapist for over 20 years. I have also been teaching meditation and mindfulness for around 30 years. At the beginning of my practice as a therapist, I developed a therapeutic mindfulness-based process model that I simply call the Five Step Process, which has been the focus and foundation of my psychotherapy practice and mindfulness coaching. The Five Step Process evolved through my own experiences of overcoming chronic depression and PTSD, mostly through self-help programs and then delving much deeper into self-mastery teachings, both ancient and modern.

Can you briefly describe the Five Step Process?

While searching for answers during my own personal development journey, I wanted to uncover the fundamental principles, laws, or physics of consciousness for mastering the mind. Through much investigation, challenging personal experience, and trusting my own intuition, what came through were two foundation steps, two action steps, and finally, an overarching commitment step. The foundation steps are 1. “Acceptance” and 2. “Personal Responsibility.” To begin with, you cannot get to know, work with and have a relationship with something or someone you are judging and in conflict with, especially yourself. To overcome the chronic depression I suffered during my teens and twenties, I had to look directly at the emotional pain that I felt when depressed. I couldn't do that until I was able to sufficiently accept myself as I am. My self-observations and emotional process work revealed that I was a prisoner to my own unconscious self-rejection, which was the cause of my emotional pain of feeling trapped and hopeless. Acceptance opened my heart, and therefore my awareness, to my own mind and allowed me to gain access to how my mind was conditioned and how that conditioning was causing my pain and suffering. Acceptance is a quality of Unconditional Love, which is the ultimate power for healing the mind.

Regarding Personal Responsibility, I discovered that you cannot gain the power and clarity to reprogram your mind if you are blaming others for the ways you think and feel and for the things you do. In the act of blaming, you are throwing away your own power of awareness of how you are creating your own suffering and, therefore, your own life. Blaming and judging yourself for your mistakes is equally self-defeating, hence the absolute importance of Acceptance. We have to accept our right to be human. In reality, we are children all our life. We are always learning and growing. Condemning a child for getting things wrong is destructive to that child. A child needs to be guided with consistent principles and boundaries, but always with Unconditional Love. Therefore, through the power of Acceptance and Personal Responsibility, we become aware and effective, forever loving and compassionate parents to our own human minds.

Steps 1 and 2 then inform and empower steps 3 and 4. Very briefly, step 3, “Let Go and Tune in,” is the deeper healing step. Here you learn how to be more present with your emotions and feelings, which reveals the deepest workings of your unconscious mind but also gives you access to your higher guidance. This is where you nurture yourself and heal your confusion and vulnerabilities ongoing. Step 4 is “Live in the Now.” This is your conscious-creating step. You are using your growing awareness and insight to create the life that you want. When you endeavor to create the life that you want, you will inevitably stumble over more of your own confusion and vulnerability, which you can then apply your step 3 work to, which then gives you even more awareness and insight to continue to create the life that you want with your step 4 work. Step 5, “Live the Process,” points out that there is no "are we there yet?" Our life is an ongoing journey of learning and growing, and if we put a self-evolving process like this at the center of our lives, then we will gain increasing access to our true potential. Therefore, the 5 steps work together to create a dynamic process of mental/emotional healing and self-evolvement. What kind of audience do you target your business towards?

Anyone who wants to overcome their suffering and create the life that they want. Anyone who is motivated towards self-mastery.

Tell us about a pivotal moment in your life that brought you to where you are today.

I was 24. It was the day I discovered there was a way to heal and grow – that this was not a mystery – it was a known thing that I could learn and live as well.

What is your work inspired by?

The power of Unconditional Love and our own unlimited capacity for awareness. To genuinely be able to experience Unconditional Love, not because someone gives that to you, but because you have aligned your conscious awareness to the actual Oneness of Life itself and hang out in that dimension in your everyday life. That is ultimately inspiring.

What are your current goals for your business?

To put it simply, to reach more people in order to help more people gain healing and self-mastery. The more people who are switched on to this higher reality, the more benefit it will bring to humanity. Achieving this level of awareness in enough people has the potential to overcome the problems of humanity. As an author, I would like to have my work more widely published. I am completing the second edition of my book, “Five Steps to Freedom,” with this aim in mind.

What has been your greatest achievement?

Overcoming my own suffering. Realising that suffering is 100% optional and that this level of awareness and self-mastery is achievable by millions of people today. What I am saying here is that you can reach a level of conscious awareness where no matter what you face in life, you are able to heal more deeply, learn, grow and become even more empowered through the experience. You are no longer a victim of life but a student of life. What was once suffering is now an opportunity to realise even more of your potential. A significant percentage of the world’s population is ready for this step up in their conscious awareness. This is what I am teaching my clients and students.

Follow me on LinkedIn, and visit my website for more info!



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