Inner Active Cards – 4th Edition


These powerful cards were developed by Sharon Sargent Eckstein the Illustrator of Parts Work: An Illustrated Guide to Your Inner Life, by Tom Holmes, PhD.

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These powerful cards were developed by Sharon Sargent Eckstein the Illustrator of Parts Work: An Illustrated Guide to Your Inner Life, by Tom Holmes, PhD.

Inner Active Cards are a boxed set of 75 durable colour illustrated cards that depict the inner life of “Parts.” When used in Parts Work Therapy, Inner Active Cards have been proven to bring clarity, efficiency, transformation and Self-Leadership to the inner lives of troubled clients.

This powerful card deck is illustration only and does not have an accompanying guidebook as everyone interprets them differently, gaining powerful, personal insights as to what their inner part is communicating.

Fantastic tool to aid any therapist working with clients and Parts Therapy.


Parts can be categorised into groups depending on their roles. Just like in a large family you will find those who like to manage, those who protect and those who need protection. You will find rebels, helpers, and those who ruminate and worry. You will find those who are warriors, and those who can’t cope, all the different masks we wear to get through our days. And buried deep down within us are the exiles, Parts that hold painful memories, traumatic experiences or unacceptable behaviours that the system perceives as unbearable, overwhelming, and dangerous. Problems begin when our Parts struggle to take over our consciousness, or “the living room” as Tom Holmes calls it. “Another analogy is to imagine a part hijacking a bus or an airplane.”

This may sound a lot like Multiple Personality Disorder, but the difference is that switching from Part to Part in our daily lives is normal and we usually remember what we said and did. But people diagnosed with Multiple Personality Disorder, which is usually the result of severe repeated trauma, are so fractured and split from Self, Parts become compartmentalized and they act unilaterally, having no knowledge or memory of other Parts and their actions; each part lives and functions in its own world.

Parts under Self-leadership are working in harmony, like members of an orchestra, with eyes on the conductor, each one quite aware of the others. And as there are different sections of an orchestra; brass section, strings, woodwinds and percussion etc, so are there different sections of Parts in our inner world. And as long as each section or group keeps their eyes on the conductor and is mindful of the other players, inner harmony will ensue.

Here is an overview of some of the groups. Even though cards are being called out by descriptors such as “Boss”, “Judge”, “Helper”, “Rebel,” and categorized into groups, it is important to keep in mind that each person will view a card through personal eyes and may hold a different meaning than what is being described here. That is why we do not have titles written on the cards. There is no right or wrong way to relate to a card.

Some cards can also serve more than one function, For example the Angry Bull can be both Rebel and Protector. It can also be a manager: People may tiptoe around those with hot tempers to avoid an angry outburst. So how do Parts function in our inner worlds?


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