Self-Differentiation and Why It Matters in Families and Relationships
The term self-differentiation was first introduced by Murray Bowen, whose ideas are the basis of family systems therapy. There are two aspects to self-differentiation: intrapsychic differentiation and interpersonal differentiation. Intrapsychic differentiation is when we can tell apart our thoughts from our emotions. In other words, it’s self-awareness. On the other hand, interpersonal differentiation is when we can distinguish our experience from the experience of people we are connected to. Both aspects of self-differentiation are important, as they empower us to be aware of our current state and the influence of different interactions and environments on our state so we can take action....
.....Studies on emotion transmission (the “contagious” result of emotions in a system) and emotion convergence (the idea that people living together can become similar emotionally over time) offer support for Bowen’s systems theory. Interestingly, emotion convergence was found not only in romantic relationships, but also in studies of platonic relationships among roommates.   ...more

Kathleen Notes: Have you ever been with someone who makes you feel happy just by being around them? How about someone who makes you feel anxious or sad? Knowing and acting on the belief that you are both part of a family system and yet a separate part is an important part of good emotional health.



- - Volume: 5 - WEEK: 36 Date: 9/7/2017 1:54:38 PM -