Original Research

Constructing a systems psychodynamic wellness model

Sanchen Henning, Frans Cilliers
SA Journal of Industrial Psychology | Vol 38, No 2 | a989 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajip.v38i2.989 | © 2012 Sanchen Henning, Frans Cilliers | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 31 May 2011 | Published: 23 March 2012

About the author(s)

Sanchen Henning, University of South Africa, South Africa
Frans Cilliers, University of South Africa, South Africa


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Abstract

Orientation: The researchers constructed a Systems Psychodynamic Wellness Model (SPWM) by merging theory and concepts from systems psychodynamics and positive psychology. They then refined the model for application in organisations during a Listening Post (LP) that comprised experienced subject experts.

Research purpose: The purpose of the research was to construct and refine the SPWM in order to understand psychological wellness at the individual, group and organisational levels.

Motivation for the study: There is no psychological wellness model that integrates the principles of systems psychodynamics and positive psychology. Systems psychodynamics traditionally focuses on so-called negative behaviour whilst positive psychology tends to idealise positive behaviour. This research tried to merge these views in order to apply them to individual, group and organisational behaviour.

Research design, approach and method: The researchers used qualitative, descriptive and conceptual research. They conducted an in-depth literature study to construct the model. They then refined it using the LP.

Main findings: The researchers identified 39 themes. They categorised them into three different levels. Three first-level themes emerged as the highest level of integration: identity, hope and love. The nine second-level themes each consisted of three more themes. They were less complex and abstract than the first-level themes. The least complex 27 third-level themes followed.

Practical/managerial implications: One can apply the SPWM as a qualitative diagnostic tool for understanding individual, group and organisational wellness and for consulting on systemic wellness.

Contribution/value-add: The SPWM offers a model for understanding individual, group and organisational wellness and for consulting on systemic wellness.


Keywords

fractal; identity; chaos; paradox; hope; optimism; attachment

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