When you change, your relationships change too

by Fe Robinson

Share:

When clients begin a personal change process in psychotherapy, it is not possible to know precisely what the outcomes will be.  Therapy is not a certain or linear process, it is multi-dimensional and dynamic. 

We are in a constant state of personal development, whether we like it or not. Just as our cells continually regenerate themselves, so our psychology evolves and changes. We are born with a wide range of potentials, and then our life experiences influence what does and does not switch on and develop.

Added to this, we are not a static, homogenous being. It seems we are a network of embodied perceptions and experiences. We each have many dimensions to ourselves, I the daughter is not the same as me the mother, or colleague, or friend. Different aspects of us come to the fore depending on our context, emotional state and physical well-being.

These insights mean that to engage in a personal change process mindfully, we need to be aware that we can not be entirely in control. Given we are a system, and we live within multiple other systems - families, teams, friendship groups, as we change we will change the way others interact with us. This goes many ways. All is dynamic and constantly adjusting.

We should expect as we learn and evolve that this will impact others, and they will react. They may cheerlead and support, and they may resent and consciously or unconsciously try and get us to revert back. Their behaviour may make no sense unless we look through the eyes of a systems perspective and notice how we are together evolving.

Engaging in psychotherapy and wanting change means that we accept that as well as us changing, others around us will also change.  Doing something different and expecting the same results is not realistic.  Learning to accept and dance with uncertainty and ambiguity may be a more fruitful way forward.

To explore yourself as a system, and reflect on the systems of which you are a part, get in touch.

Go back