What are family constellations?

What are family constellations?

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"Children rarely or never dare to live a happier or more satisfying life than their parents. Without realizing that they remain faithful to the unspoken family traditions that work invisibly. Family constellations are a way of discovering the underlying family ties and forces that have been unconsciously taken over several generations. "Bertold Ulsamer


  • 1 Family constellations: a way to explore and improve family dynamics
  • 2 How does a Family Constellation session take place?
  • 3 What do Family Constellations deal with?
  • 4 Topics that can be constellated
  • 5 Family Constellations: A phenomenological approach

Family constellations: a way to explore and improve family dynamics

A Family constellation It is a therapeutic process that is carried out in a group and works on the deepest part of our consciousness. The theory on which this technique is based is that people have certain unconscious negative anchors, which convey painful feelings and which sometimes we do not know how to detach. These anchors often lead us to reproduce certain behavior or live certain negative situations repeatedly, without knowing very well how to solve it.

Family Constellations are carried out with several people who do not have any link to each other and who attend the same workshop. It is important to clarify that although the Family Constellations are carried out in a group, it is not considered a Group Therapy as such, since the work dynamics are very different.

Bert Hellinger, German psychotherapist and former priest developed this method in the mid-1990s and is the founder of this technique. Throughout his career he has treated and studied families for more than 50 years, and noted that many of us unconsciously use destructive family patterns that lead us to anxiety, depression, anger, guilt, loneliness, alcoholism and even illness as a form of "belonging" to our families. His theory is that, united by a deep love, a child often sacrifices his own interests in a vain attempt to alleviate the suffering of a father or other family member.

Family Constellations allow us to break these patterns so that we can live in a more conscious, healthy, happy and above all full way. The results can be a real life change.

So that, The purpose of Family Constellations is to discover the hidden dynamics of a family and their relationships in an experimental way. This is a gentle and sensitive method that allows you to reveal the energies of relationships through representatives, so that you can lead to a solution. This implies that each member of the system is allowed to find their place in the group through a healthy and respectful connection with each other.

How does a session of Family Constellations take place?

To carry out the Family Constellation, several people meet including the consteller (therapist), and sessions are held that last one morning or one afternoon. In a workshop constellation of 3 to 6 people, depending on the organization with which the group has previously been structured. Each assistant will have their turn to constellate and their constellation will last approximately one hour. During the constellation, other people become an active part of the therapy, since they can be chosen to represent the experiences of the unconscious of the person who is constellation (performing the therapy). After each constellation shift, a 10-minute break is taken to rest and the next one continues. In this way the work dynamic is continuous and each person who attends performs a personal and group work.

It is not necessary that a person attending has to have some kind of knowledge about constellations, since the way of working is orderly and at the same time experiential and creative. In summary, each person who attends a family constellation workshop performs a personal work, both in their constellation and in that of others: it is very common to feel that the role or roles that each person experiences as a representative is related to aspects of his life and personal history.

What are the Family Constellations about?

This process is effective in matters of a systemic nature. When there are problems due to behavior patterns that come from the family of origin. This therapy helps solve family problems and find meaning and purpose in life, as well as solve personal issues.

The Family Constellation process works on many levels simultaneously, works at a deep level, such as hypnotherapy. According to Hellinger, the energy we are treating here is primarily the soul energy.

Topics that can be constellated

  • Difficulties in family relationships.
  • Personal development.
  • Childhood traumas
  • Relationship conflicts, current or past relationships
  • Problems with the children
  • Orientation in vital moments of change.
  • Depression, sadness and melancholy, with or without apparent cause.
  • Losses and duels - Overcoming tragic events.
  • Resources to deal with diseases.
  • Fertility problems, adoptions.
  • Exclusion and social relations problems.
  • Difficult destinations (premature deaths, abortions).
  • Feeling of self-sabotage to not achieve economic, professional, or personal success.
  • Other topics: inheritances, judgments.
  • Guidance at the professional level and projects.

Family Constellations: A phenomenological approach

The Existential Therapy It is based on a phenomenological approach as a way of working that requires the therapist to put aside the hypotheses, theories or programs learned, in order to allow the client to explore their reality and allow the situation to show itself. This can provide useful information from which a person can see the meaning of their situation.

Similarly, in the Family Constellations a therapist is required or adopts a phenomenological approach in which he stops his previous knowledge or assumptions, in order to allow the constellation with his representatives to unfold and reveal what is necessary for the client and the problem that it presents.

All Psychological Therapies