Friday, 12 September 2014

Circle of Security

Circle of security

The circle of security is a way of understanding relationships. The top half is about providing a secure base for family and friends to go out into the world from. The bottom half is about providing safe hands for them to come back to. Its also a model for what we need from others.

We all have times of coming and going. Going out times are when a person needs others to delight in them, watch over them, enjoy with them and help them. Coming in times are when a person needs protection, comfort, someone to delight in them and help to organise their feelings. Supporting their exploration, then welcoming their coming to you. When they are feeling ok, they feel safe to go out and when they need reassurance, they come back in to us. 

Ive had to work on this in regards to my husband. I was happy for him to go out but i wasnt always there for him when he wanted to tell me about things because i found them boring for example. He also complains alot about his back etc. Normaly i got annoyed with having to listen to it all the time but all he really needed was for me to empathise with him and the complaining lessened. 

When someone finds it hard to deal with another persons particular emotion or need, it is called shark music. This is something we would have picked up in childhood. For example, i get very nervous when people are angry because my dad was often angry which is scary to a child. We need to recognise our shark music and stop ourselves, so we can respond effectively instead of just reacting. 

Another useful strategy ive been taught is the 1,2,3 method of discipline. Basically the first time your child does something wrong, you hold your finger up and say, thats 1. Then next time they misbehave, you hold up two fingers and say, thats two. You then repeat the action for the third misbehaviour. The child is then sent to their room for 1 minute per year the childs been alive. The important part is not saying anything else and staying calm. 

My daughter often has big emotions. The kind where you just cant get through to her at all. The way ive been taught to deal with these episodes, was to firstly stop trying to force her to calm down. Punishing and yelling also had to stop. When a child is that out of control of themselves, they are scared and need us to be bigger, stronger, wiser and kinder. They need the parent to empathise with them verbally, touch can often help too. The child needs to be given permission to feel their emotions, not hurry up and get over it just because its uncomfortable or inconvenient for the parent. 

In all our relationships, we need to make sure that we are always being the adult in the situation. The angry child doesnt need the parent acting the part of the child too. Things like yelling, shaming, threatening, etc are all childish and also bullying. In our adult relationships we can often fall into the role of parent or child, by doing things such as nagging or manipulating. 

We all need to set clear boundaries and consequences with other people. 

These are the main things ive learnt recently from attending regular parenting/relationship sessions. Hopefully they might be of use to you too. 

Comment below with your thoughts about the circle

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