Updated: Jun 25, 2021
I remember the day that I finally realized the true meaning of homeostasis. Not in just the physiological sense with the body but also in the sense of homeostasis within systems. It was my second semester at La Salle University where I took Systems Theory with Dr. Dena Dinardo when I realized that power of homeostasis within systems. Homeostasis is the "feeling of balance". It is essentially the point where (in family systems) the family seeks to reach in order to "maintain its customary organization and functioning over time."
To think, a family who has designed their systemic structure to function exactly the way they have prepared it to function is not only ideal but also perfect. The issue is that the "perfect family" does not exist forever, as family functioning is changing consistently. This also suggests that, the balance within the system is ever changing. Families are often challenged with the task of continuously reassessing the family needs, functioning and values to assure appropriate functioning. The inability to do so will inadvertently create a "symptom bearer" also known as the "scapegoat" which presents to therapy as the "identified patient."
The identified patient (IP) is the person who is carrying the symptoms of the family. This person will exhibit unexplainable emotional symptoms such as depression, anxiety, defiant behaviors etc. In my experience, I have found the scapegoat to be described as the person that is challenging the families state of homeostasis at that time. The thing about balance in the families is that once its has been reached, the family will be resist change until the symptoms present again.
It is safe to say that some families are able to transition without a scape goat, however others require additional support (preferably a trained Family Therapist.) It is important for me to add here the importance of Family therapy. The first reason is due to the Systemic training of a Family Therapist as well as the understanding that the IP is simply the symptom carrier not the source of the problem. If the IP is the only person being treated then one by one different "scapegoats" will present within the same family. Family Therapist evaluate family members roles, positions within the system as a whole and problems are treated by changing the way the system works rather than "fixing" a specific member.
The point of this is that change is inevitable. Feeling stuck presents when we try to function normally when normal is no longer normal. Currently, we are experiencing a pandemic that has challenged our understanding of life in and of itself whether physically, mentally, emotionally, and financially, life as we know it has been shaken. This is the perfect time to challenge your cycle of feeling stuck. Feeling stuck is the prerequisite to change. Change is a process, thus an action that does not happen over night. The thing about feeling stuck is that you don't really know how to get "unstuck" however that change is within your power. As the world changes, the energy needed to continue functioning the same way will become more and more difficult to maintain.
We are all a time in our lives where we must assess how we are functioning and question the purpose of these ongoing internal feelings of "stuckness," "emptiness," "void" and "hopelessnees." If we do not find a way to address them, then we are allowing the cycle to continue. Changing our circumstance is within our power. When we continuously challenge our state of homeostasis it challenges and enhances our core. The more we enhance our core, the more stern or foundations become.
QUESTION OF SELF REFLECTION
Where do you feel stuck in your life?
Do you believe that you do not have the energy to the feelings of stuckness?
Have your environment grown more toxic? and noticing a growth in toxic relationship?
Have you been feeling emense stress and possible feelings of depression?
Have you experienced feelings that there has to be more to life?
Do you believe that your toxic steak will never end?
If you have answered yes to any of these and believe you need help with changing and prepared to work on your feeling of stuckness. If you believe you need and want support with change it is recommended that you reach out to access professional help and support. These feelings and experiences will continue to appear if they are not addressed and resolved. You can do it! You do not have to do it on your own! Seek a trained professional. Declare the end to of your CYCLE!