HaML Clinical AssociatesSmall Painting
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Wheels are turning  

EggmenThe understanding and meaning of a “problem” has undergone a remarkable evolution. Some of us grew up in simpler times in which problems were largely understood in terms of a deficit model—a problem reflected that something was lacking in us. Consequently, “health” and “well being” were indicated by the absence of problems.

Information, increasingly more complex understandings of ourselves, others, and the surrounding environment, and an ever-changing world have encouraged many to think differently about a “problem”. We believe, at least for now, that a Eggmenmore realistic and constructive way of relating to a problem is to understand it from a more developmental perspective. From this vantage point, problems are viewed as naturally occurring—some in predictable ways, some in unexpected ways. While some problems might be preventable, many are not. Consequently, from a developmental perspective, “health” and “well being” is measured by the manner in which we manage the problems coming our way. Our goal is to manage the problems in such a way Eggmenas to prevent them from backing up on us. When problems begin to pile up—whether for an individual, couple, family, work group, or organization—a distressed state results.

Santiago Perez's painting, Wide Open Seas, wonderfully captures the challenge of life from a developmental perspective. His “eggmen” have made it this far, protected from the elements by both the boat and their protective shells. But their boat is at anchor and the sail has been pulled up. To move ahead, literally, these folks must give up the comfortable and familiar. What lies ahead is uncertain but the ways of the past are limiting and cause opportunities to be lost.

From a developmental perspective, until proven otherwise, we are all doing the best we can. Consequently, in the absence of specific conditions (drug and alcohol involvement, profound organic involvement such as a brain tumor, Eggmenretardation, major mental illness, and trauma), all behavior is viewed as highly functional—it somehow serves us well. The bind, as the painting so beautifully captures, is that functional behavior (the “eggmen” staying in their protective shells) can actively interfere with important developments in one's life.

HaML Clinical Associates is deeply committed to supporting development while respecting the very human aspects that threaten it. We view problems as opportunities and learning moments. We also recognize that while “change” can bring uncertainty, it can—as the peeping periscope suggests—stir both interest and excitement.