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The comfort of home.

Counselling — admin @ 12:52 pm

Here at Counselling Connections it has been a quiet week. We have been away for a long weekend and lots of clients are on holiday at this time. It has been interesting for us to travel abroad and spend a little time visiting another country with a different culture. Having a look at how other people do things gave us the chance to reflect on the way we do things at home. It is probably easier to observe behaviour in others than it is to try to take a step back and see these things in ourselves.
Even in our modern world with global brands and marketing it is possible to find delightful local variations in food, for example without travelling too far. And it can be a joy when we get home and back to the routines of life to try to recreate a holiday meal at home. Indeed much of our modern diet is influenced by the cuisine of the Mediterranean and further afield which we have enjoyed while holidaying abroad.
For us it says something about our adaptability that we enjoy taking on the influences we come across on our travels. As children we have had the experience of watching with great interest the ways of the adults in our world. We were susceptible to all kinds of influence and took on board much of the ways of being which we had observed. Through this process and throughout childhood we developed our own way of being. It would be usual to grow in ways and to learn views which would be considered normal within our own mini culture; our family.
There are of course complicating factors in this process. It is comfortable to take on family influences which sit well with us. We find it reassuring to be part of the group and if the influence of the group feels natural and nurturing we will embrace it. It is a sad fact of life that in many groups or families the dominant culture is not a healthy one. In these circumstances a child might do their best to resist what are considered the norms of the group. This may create a way of being in relation to groups that causes difficulties over and again in work and other group settings throughout life.
We have discovered an odd fact in relation to family and home which has been experienced by people who report discomfort at being away. This is the likelihood that home was not a safe, nurturing place for them. It seems that when someone has had a good, consistent and reassuring time at home growing up that they can internalise this sensation and carry it forward through life. Conversely, people who report difficulties when they are making their way in the world or when they travel often dream of a return to home even when their experience of home when they were growing up was not a happy one.
So, holiday time is a time of discovery and a time to enjoy influences from abroad. It is a time to step out of our day to day routine. We will often then take on board some of the influences which we have come across on our travels. When we return to our normal routine of school or work we can enjoy the good of any of the little changes we have made to our lifestyle under these influences. We can also enjoy the security and comfort which we make for ourselves in our own home. It is the consistency and comfort of home which gives us the capability to travel without fear. And so it goes for holidays as it does for life.
Counselling Connections, Dundalk.

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