“And the day came
when the risk to remain tight in a bud
was more painful
than the risk it took to blossom.”
My name is Neela Paulussen (1975). I like this quote about daring to live life and the contractions that stop us. It is precisely this paradox between longing and fear that inspires me most. Because how do I do that, gather the courage to live life to the fullest? And how do I do that in contact with others? How can I be honest and meet someone without holding back, without hiding my vulnerability, without pretending to be something different, a little bigger, a little stronger, a little more independent? I know the desire for freedom and also the fear that holds me back. The search for answers started with myself.
I have learned to listen to what happens in me, to that what is whispering, under all that is loud. I’ve learned about splintering and helplessness, as well as about courage and strength. About taking myself seriously, here and now, instead of living my life from ideas about how I, or my life, should be like. I have learned to embrace that what is off, to be touched more, to enjoy more fully, to laugh harder and to love more deeply. I do this job because this is what I love to do most. It feels rich and meaningful to be able to support people in their growth process and their search for a more authentic, sincere and free life.
As a human, as a therapist, I wish to recover connection where it has been lost. Within people, between people and in how we as humans relate to other nature. The role trauma plays in the roots of climate crisis and social injustice is enormous. Learning about this and relating to this motivates me deeply.
I am a mother of 3 sons who I co-parent with their father and our new partners. In relating with my partner, we explore how we can feel free in the inevitable tightness that intimate relationship also brings. Since 2016 I have my own practice in Amsterdam and I am also the founder of In de Naaikamer, a sewing school that closed its doors for good during the lockdowns. Since 1996 I have been trained in various ways in human functioning and personal growth, both grounded in Western science and Eastern wisdom.