In any healing modality, including Family Constellations, we’ve all felt that moment, somewhere in the middle of things. Some stuff has started to happen. But then what? What do we do? How do we help the work come to a resolution?
It’s time to “Read the Field.” It’s time for our intuition to show up, tell us what to do, and make it possible for us to guide the constellation to a good and true resolution for our clients.
We all know anything that sounds like “intuition” requires a kind of relaxation, but as we feel the pressure of the group and our obligation to our client (and perhaps with visions of our “perfect” trainers in our heads, causing confidence-sapping comparisons), the last thing we feel is relaxed. We tense and we worry.
The Big Constellations (and healing practice) Secret? Every single practitioner, even the most experienced, feels like they have no idea what they are doing at least once a session. The only difference between the expert and others is that we welcome the arrival of not-knowing as a friend ready to give us the gift we couldn’t have planned or expected. And then, in some ways, the work really starts…
So many new healing arts practitioners worry about their intuition. We have a strong story that intuition is critical for any kind of healing work. But I admit, I am a bit skeptical.
First, let me say: I do believe in a non-physical reality (whatever that means!). I believe in what some people call “the transpersonal.” There is something beyond what we can currently quantify scientifically, and it’s present and incredibly important in day-to-day human life. It shows up in ordinary spiritual experience, in how poets know a poem is “true”, in our instinct when we know someone is about to cut us off while driving, and much more.
But I’m not sure it helps us to call that knowledge “intuition,” leaving so many people who feel they aren’t very spiritual or psychic or able to “read energy” feeling like that they can’t be very good at it. But if intuition isn’t the real issue, what can we do to get better at our healing arts?
Let’s look at an anology from professional sports. Skiing, for instance, relies on muscle memory and what’s called “implicit knowledge.” We don’t say “That skier is really intuitive.” We say “That skier is really skilled.” And, although there are people who take to skiing more naturally than others, we assume there was a lot of learning, coaching and practicing (and failing) on the way to any skier’s excellence.
A good healing practitioner is like a good skier. Years of practice, integrating specific skills that were broken down and then put together into a whole, leads to expert skiing. It’s NOT intuition. It’s learning the skills and practicing them.
And yet, it does seem like the Field is more mysterious than a mountainside (although try to convince a skier of that!). You can see snow, trees, moguls, dips, rocks. Can you see the Field?
Yes, but somewhat indirectly. We can start to work with the Field effectively – which grows our ability to respond “intuitively” to the constellation and support expert resolutions – by applying concrete observational skills. Not so much step-by-step in the sense of “first do this, then that, then that.” But more like taking a step, checking that, and then another step based on that, and then checking again.
It reminds me more of rock climbing than going through a checklist (including turning around and going back the way we came when we notice a dead end – it happens!). It is sensible and rational, but it can’t be turned into a cookie cutter recipe.
Thank goodness! That would take away all the fun!
What are some of these learnable steps?
If we apply these intentionally throughout our healing work, we will be surprised at what we notice, and others will begin to think we’re magicians. But we’re not. We’ve just gotten very, very good at unconsciously noticing what is going on. We’ve built our muscle memory.
Starting October 30th, I am starting a new online course, The Art of Constellations, which will be all about how to develop this kind of implicit knowledge. It will for anyone who wants support and direction in reading the Field and growing their intuition, in constellation work or other healing modalities. Find out more here.
What is your experience of growing your intuition? We all grow when we share our stories. And, I am really supported when people who connect with my writing share it so that others can see it. If you have a response, to please share it in the comments below. Thank you!