The Integrating Adult Ego State


Ego States are a fundamental theory of TA.

They explain the complex voices and feelings we all hear and act out.

Today I am sharing ideas on the Adult ego state and how we can strengthen and grow this because it is the reality of the moment, and it is easy to be out of touch with reality when we are hurting or unable to care for ourselves or others. For example, when there is trauma, we lose any sense of self or identity. Self-narrative. According to Jo Suthridge (2006, Inside Out: A Transactional Analysis Model of Trauma) is a vital function of the Integrating Adult.

The Adult Ego State is the behaviours, thoughts and feelings that are in direct response to the here and now, and this Ego State is fluid, full of energy and growth. It has a present-centred integrating quality.

Tudor & Summers, 2005, pg. 5 of co-creative TA says that “when we are in expanding Adult flow, we will naturally explore and expand our way of being and relating because we are curious about ourselves, others and life. We test new possibilities expanding our relational, emotional, intellectual and technical capacities.”

The Integrating Adult is linked to organismic psychology (Tudor & Summers, 2014p. 40-41), which focuses on the body, breath, body and pausing, seeing the ego-states as body-based and with this knowledge in mind, I am inviting you to explore with me through the following simple exercise.

An exercise for connecting with your Adult (take 3-5mins on each part)

Become aware of yourself standing in your body, your skin, glance at your two feet planted on the ground and stand tall again. To be in your Adult self is to be in your chest/heart, the place in your body that divides the lower body from the upper body.

  • To begin, stand up in a natural feet hip distance apart, shoulders comfortably down your back position with your chest lifting toward the sun, and develop awareness by centring yourself in your body.
  • Next, explore being aware of the spontaneous energy flowing through you and allow yourself to move with it, or let it move you, allow yourself to be moved by it.
  • With hands on your heart, bring to mind another person and allow yourself to experience the love, tenderness and care you feel for them to flow; you can begin exploring this intimacy with yourself and others.
  • Finally, Allow yourself to explore integrity which, according to Ken Mellor (2008, Autonomy with Integrity), is the capacity for achieving oneness with everything. By embracing the beauty of life and at the same time being willing to face and experience everything no matter how comfortable or uncomfortable it is.


Reflecting on your experiences, what did you notice?

What was it like for you to do this?

I would love to hear!