"...A sense of completeness is achieved through a union of the consciousness with the unconscious contents of the mind. Out of this union arises what Jung called 'the transcendent function of the psyche,' by which a man can achieve his highest goal: the full realization of the potential of his individual Self."
From Ancient Myths and Modern Man by Joseph L. Henderson
Alchemical healing is the process of getting to know oneself deeply. With such personal knowledge, transformation is not only possible, but becomes an organic necessity. There is no second guessing as the guidance comes from the knowing within. As one's internal world is explored, acknowledged and honored, the external world realigns itself appropriately. New possibilities appear that before were unfathomable.
One of the ways to work with this deep process of healing is to explore and refine our own consciousness, so that we have the ability to actually know what we are doing or feeling in-the-moment. We can also learn about and explore how to be friendly and welcoming to all aspects of our persona that arise in different contexts and situations...the easy ones and the difficult ones. This requires us to slow down enough so that we have options, and can do more than merely react. It is the ability to stay in one's body (or return quickly) when there is a huge emotion that takes us by storm. It means having the where-with-all to assess each situation in life as an independent event with as much heart and caring as possible. It means navigating more consciously and less via automatic pilot.
Greater consciousness is cultivated with focused work and intention. It is work that needs to engage and be informed by all aspects of the psyche. The in-roads are numerous and diverse, but it is crucial that the unconscious mind be included. We are at sea without it. Dream work, active imagination, meditation, journaling, creativity, focusing, soul-level conversation can all be part of this transformation. Since the process is alchemical (and not necessarily rational or linear), all that is happening in our lives is part of the process; there is nothing superfluous. The work is based on an understanding that everything is present for a reason. We then take it from there.