One area that has struck me as I have been reading about systems, constellations and human nature in general, has been people’s desire to belong. Whittington in his book: Systemic Coaching and Constellations, talks about ‘the need to belong and the dynamics that emerge’. He continues:
‘We all come from systems. Complex and overlapping relationship systems each with their own, mostly unspoken, rules of belonging. Our belonging in each system is unconscious but we carry with us an embodied sense of it, knowing when we are acting in alignment or out of alignment with it’.
In organisations this sense of belonging can be very present or absent. If someone does not fit the corporate culture, it is often this sense of belonging which comes to the fore. Ferrucci also talks about belonging and has a chapter in his book ‘The Power of Kindness’ called ‘A sense of belonging’. He states:
‘The sense of belonging is a basic need and at the same time the answer to a question. We ask ourselves: What am part of? And this question resembles – perhaps coincides with – another equally crucial question: Who am I? We belong to a family, a group, a society, a professional category: and the affiliations define us and give us reasons for existing. Without this belonging, we would feel like nothing.’
In today’s world, a sense of community is in many cases disappearing. Local shops are replaced by big supermarkets or online shopping. Also, there is a tendency for people not to stay in one area, they are more mobile, due to changes in the job market. Ferrucci makes the point that we must be open and flexible when it comes to belonging.