WHAT IS FAMILY CONSTELLATION THERAPY?
Family Constellation Therapy is a group therapy style developed by German psychotherapist Bert Hellinger in the 1990’s and is a gentle and profound way of looking at, and bringing healing to situations that hold us back and create unhappiness, grief, pain or illness in our lives.
Family Constellations is based on the understanding that we are all connected to our ancestry. Only a foreign concept to those in developed nations, this work is familiar to any indigenous group and is only now being proven through empirical scientific research. Intergenerational trauma can be inherited but so can blockages in our family line. So can the good stuff by the way.
Systemic Family Constellation Therapy works with issues and patterns we encounter in our daily lives by this understanding – that we are connected to and deeply rooted in our ancestry. What often is missing is the awareness of these connections.
WHAT HAPPENS IN A CONSTELLATION?
Workshop participants will sit in a circle, offering their attention and presence in a way that is no different to any group gathering, be it corporate or therapy. The ‘field’ that arises is present in any gathering but in this arena, it is used for healing blocks, deep seated grief or life challenges.
The person wishing to work will highlight an issue with the facilitator then they will select members of the group to represent those within their situation. Alternatively they could be called in to become a representative in other group members’ constellations. The representatives then move around the circle and will report back to the facilitator what arises for them. Always representatives feel like the people they represent, without knowing them but at no time will they feel ‘possessed’ or overcome by another’s presence.
The process can be deeply moving, transformational and evoke lasting change from the inside out (talk therapy is from the inside, in). It will shift not only the participant but members of their family or those in relationship with them – even if they are not present. This work is subtle, safe and often joyful.
HOW DOES TRADITIONAL FAMILY & SYSTEMIC CONSTELLATION WORK PRACTICALLY OCCUR?
The work simply offers insight into the hidden dynamics at play, eventually leading to significant healing movements. The process is intuitive, dogma-free, and helps people connect with their own authenticity, inner wisdom, and soul force that build the foundation of change. It is not drama therapy.
Participants can either do their own constellation or function as representatives in other people’s constellations. It is highly encouraged to participate either way when attending a workshop but no one is required to do a constellation in order to attend. It is important to note that this work goes very deep and does not live or function in the head but in the soul/the inside. In German it is called “Seelenarbeit” (“soul work”).
The difference to other therapy models is how a client comes to understand their block or challenge, in that the awareness or understanding emerges from the inside out, not from the outside in. Even if a participant doesn’t do their own constellation, by bearing witness to other’s processes, one can begin to understand how intrinsically similar we are: how connected. This modality enhances belonging – which for many of us can be profoundly life-changing.
This work is not a theatre or an encounter or a channelling, rather it is deep group embodiment of story, revealing the human condition the bigger picture at play.