Friday, June 30, 2017

Ten Guidelines to Beat a Dysfunctional System #5: Give Everyone a Fresh Start and a Clean Slate

So, let's review what happens in a dysfunctional system, in case you have forgotten.   In a dysfunctional system everyone has a role that they play.   The faces and names change, but the roles don't.  And that is why it is so hard for the dysfunction to be broken.

Let's use the example of a church.   In a dysfunctional church system there are those two or three families who "try to control everything and are never happy."  So, when a new pastor comes in, everyone convinces the new pastor that if those few people were gone, the church will change.  So, new pastor comes in and takes his/her stand against those two or three couples.   Finally either the pastor wins them over, or they get mad and leave and for a little while everything seems great.

Until all the sudden two or three different families start to fulfill the role of "the ones who try to control everyone and are never happy."  People start to complain about them and how they are ruining everything.   So, the pastor begins to work with them for a while and maybe they settle down or maybe they leave too.   What happens next?  You guessed it, someone else fills the role.

And what is the solution after all this happens several times?  It must be the pastor!   Let's get a new pastor and that will solve everything.   Pastors change,  honeymoon over, and what do you know?  The same thing happens again.

So what is the trick to beating this?  Recognizing the roles and then everyone giving each other a fresh start and a clean slate.   Start looking for the good in the person who fulfills the role of "worst person" or "hardest to get along with" or "black sheep."   Give a new start to the person you have viewed as being critical of you and start looking for ways they support you.

If you expect the worst, you will probably get it.  Start expecting the best.

If everyone in the system does this, there can be immediate and rapid change.  But if only you do this, it will make you feel way better about things, which might shake up the system in and of itself.  If one person changes .... the whole system changes slightly.

Fresh starts?  Clean slates?  Not easy to do, but not impossible either.   Try it.  

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