Helena Clayton | What Matters Most
Are you in touch with what matters most to you?
Are you in touch with what matters most to you?

A one day workshop: Exploring complex problems using Systemic Constellations

More and more, in my coaching and OD proactive, my work is informed by the field of Systemic Constellations.  It’s powerful and practical, and brings new ‘ways of seeing’ into our work that really complements what we’re already doing.

This is a one day event, limited to 12 participants, run by me and my colleague Matt Fairbrass, both of us deeply experienced in organisational change and transformation as well as Systemic Constellations.

We have no workshops available at the moment but please subscribe to my Newsletter and you’ll be the first to hear about new dates.

During the day, you will:

  • Learn how an approach that draws on systemic constellations, intuition and embodied knowing brings a new and useful dimension to the more traditional ways of approaching change.
  • Learn practical ways to ‘switch on’ our intuition and our embodied knowing.
  • Experience elements of Systems Mapping for yourself so that you understand it from the inside.
  • Have the opportunity to ‘workshop’ an issue using a Constellations approach with one of our facilitators.
  • Leave with some simple tools that you can apply immediately in your organisation or with clients.

Is this workshop for you?  Definitely, if you’re in an OD, Change or HR role.  And also if you’re a leader or a senior manager in the middle of change.  All are welcome. And do give me a call on 07771 358881 if you’d like to discuss anything before booking.

Systemic Constellations

Systemic Constellations is a way to:

  • Develop new insight into an issue or problem.
  • Help an organisational system – or part of one – find ease, flow or balance.
  • Better understand the competing forces at play in a problem or situation.
  • Unstick something that feels stuck.
  • See more clearly through complexity
  • Reveal what might be undermining a change effort.
  • See previously unseen possibilities and new ways forward.

It’s a modern way to work with an issue or problem, a contemporary way to create or support change.  

Alongside the traditional approach of diagnostic, analysis, implementation and review Systemic Constellations offers a different and complementary way to resolve thorny and complex issues and problem-solve as well as gain new and deeper insight or learning.

The methodology uses spatial mapping and ‘parts work’ to work with the various elements of a system.  It draws not only on our cognitive intelligence but also on our intuition and embodied intelligence to give us vital and often overlooked data about what’s going on in the system.

Complex issues and ‘wicked problems’ require us to use all our intelligences and traditional approaches to decision making and problem solving that rely on rational and logical approaches sometimes miss key information that provides a holistic picture.

Systemic Constellations is versatile and can be used in a range of scenarios including, but not limited to:

  • Individual coaching.
  • Helping a team move through a difficult phase.
  • Supporting a piece of change
  • Helping a whole organisation find its purpose.

How does it work in practice

When working with a client issue, we tend to follow a particular structure or flow, which we adapt according to the issue we’re working with.  

We begin with a Discovery Interview when we identify the key parts of the system to work with.   This step alone, identifying all the influential parts and elements, can be very revealing. 

Next we co-create a spatial map or constellation of these various parts.  Again, even at this early stage, things may start to come into focus, providing early insight and new information.

Then, using a range of approaches, we work with all parts of the map, dynamically, exploring how each part relates to the other parts.  

Sometimes we take a helicopter view, coming right out – and we spot patterns that we had been previously unaware of.  Other times we get right up close to one part of the system and experience what it’s like to BE that part of the system – and from there we often get a visceral understanding of what that feels like.  We give each part of the system a voice and hear what they think and feel. 

As we work together, all kinds of shifts and insights can occur.  Most people say they get a better understanding of the dynamic of the system.  Some might realise that the problem isn’t x at all, but something rather different. We might find ourselves being less judgemental and more compassionate. We get a blinding realisation about what it is we’ve overlooked or been blind to. We may understand what hidden forces are at play. Or maybe we realise that the relationship between two particular parts needs some work.

As strange as this may sound, we learn what the system has to say.  We ask the system. We discover what’s missing and what the system needs in order to be restored to health, or be brought back into balance. 

As we come to the end of a session, we start to ask ourselves: ‘and with this new knowledge, what now might be possible?’  Or: ‘what might be the next wise action I might take?’

Systems Mapping – and this workshop – draws on the work of many great teachers and many disciplines.  Matt and I have learned so much from the work of Bert Hellinger, Judith Hemming and Ed Rowland and Jan Jacob Stam from the field of Systemic Constellations, for example.   Our training in Shadow Work and voice dialogue practice has also made a powerful contribution.  Ideas from Deep Ecology also inform our practice, as does Keegan and Lahey’s Immunity to Change.   And of course, somatic and embodied practices as well as John Heron’s ‘ways of knowing’. 


Leading from Love

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