Family constellations? Huh? It sounded like some bizarre concept when one of my best friends, who I trust immensely and is a trained Psychotherapist requested that I accompany her to a family constellation day. I didn’t do much research, which is probably best as the most effective way to understand this for me was attending and experiencing this in action.
After the day ended with my friend, I didn’t think too much of it and noticed that my friend was glowing with a sense of optimism about decisions she was really worried about before; she even picked me to represent her mother on the day. This was after we agreed beforehand this wouldn’t happen as I knew too much of the ‘inside’ stuff; we laughed about this later. This experience was a few years ago.
As I take quite a keen interest in the relationship with money work, looking at different methodologies to explore money appeals to me and when I heard ‘money constellations’, it intuitively felt right to investigate further.
I attended my own first money constellation weekend in September 2018 with 2 amazing facilitators — Barbara Morgan and Ty Francis. They run an annual event in Cheshire, in the UK; they have impressive qualifications and experience and seemed to approach their work with a high degree of care, ethics and dedication. I won’t say much about my experience — it was very powerful and with some fairly deep changes in real life which perhaps are still unravelling; all I did was ask a question that first morning which got very emotional for me and lo and behold, I had initiated my very first family constellation.
After attending the constellation, in September, I read quite a few books on the topic. Here are some useful things I learned about family and money constellation work:
1. Success has the face of the mother.
2. Accepting your family, parents especially as they are is important. So is being grateful to them for life.
3. If you feel blocked about your life, money, work or business, there could be deeper work to be done within your family system.
4. It is possible also that you had a perfectly wonderful childhood and yet carry some unhealed aspects of the family system with you.
5. All work around money has deeper roots than we can imagine. Ty Francis said this.
6. As a client in a constellation, one can feel deeply loyal to the problem (poverty or not being financially secure) and may not be ready for ‘solutions’. The therapists never pushed or rescued in any way; it felt like a safe way to be facilitated in a workshop. The focus was on exploring what eased the flow of love in the family system.
7. If you stay in the position of ‘victim’, there is not much hope. It is best to contact our inner perpetrator in a situation. Example, at work where you end up complaining about a boss and not doing anything.
8. Money can carry energetic history For example, a grandparent who made money through slavery, colonialism, stealing or business that significantly harmed others… or a parent who suffered a lot of trauma in a war.
Having experienced this first hand and convinced it was unbelievably insightful and transformational, I was very keen to offer it to my Conscious Money (affectionately also called Como) Newsletter subscribers. When an opportunity to work with Sarah Peyton, a highly experienced family constellation facilitator arose, I grabbed it with both hands.
One beautiful and warm summer’s day in London, this June, at my home, we ran a private invite-only Money Constellation event; I didn’t advertise it and we had a room full of people — whoever was meant to be there was there, which is how most workshops tend to go.
Watching Sarah Peyton work is quite exquisite. We touched upon different themes with each constellation from revoking unconscious contracts about giving more than receiving and loyalties to poverty to dissolving old rage and hurts towards family members, leaving peaceful feelings and understanding in place.
We can make unconscious contracts with ourselves, to stay safe and out of a deep and blind love for our parents or caretakers. These can be helpful for survival at the time, when we are little…however are usually redundant, unhelpful and even destructive at adults. I was taken aback at how deep-rooted these contracts are; it makes sense to me why looking at our family systems and money is so powerful in resolving unconscious blocks to earning, spending, celebrating and enjoying life and our boundaries when it comes to giving and receiving.
Again, I had quite an emotional and powerful experience. So did the other participants; this was wonderful to witness. One part of my experience that I am happy to share is when we looked at my business, which I had requested we do at the start of my process, which Sarah had tracked. Great tracking skills help a group really trust the facilitator. Near what I thought was the end of my constellation, Sarah guided a representative to stand in as ‘the heart of my business’ while another representative took the place of ‘client’. As I was watching this, it felt like I was not being made eye contact with although they were both fairly close to me. Both representatives for client and business were gazing comfortably in each other’s eyes. The representative for my business said she felt very solid, centred, strong and clear as my business. The representative for my client said she only wanted to look at my business. Sarah said matter-of-factly that this was appropriate as the client relationship was with the business and after this, we closed the constellation. I was very happy with this final insight of course.
Sarah may be back next year and we may offer another day at my home in London. If you are interested, do email me briefly and I will ensure you are invited.
Here are some further resources that may be helpful if you are curious:
Website: for Ty Francis and Barbara Morgan’s Money Constellations in the UK
Website for Sarah Peyton: Empathy Brain
Book: Family Constellations: A Practical Guide to Uncovering the Origins of Family Conflict by Joy Manne (A very good overview, I found).
A video featuring Sarah Peyton: Unconscious Contracts & Sacred Vows: How We Limit Our Life Energy
Book: Topics of Business Consultancy by Bert Hellinger (quite an advanced read, you might want the fundamentals of family constellations first).