Regnancy: a shadow over personal construing

Title: Regnancy: a shadow over personal construing
Author: Philip Boxer
Category: Published
Publication Year: 1987
Where Published: In Fransella F. & Thomas L. (eds) ‘Experimenting with Personal Construct Psychology’, Routledge & Kegan Paul

Strategic decisions are represented as such in retrospect because they become associated with discontinuities in the way things have been discontinuities in the knot. When I started I was hoping that I would come up with the philosopher’s stone of strategy, the ability to turn a plain and ordinary discontinuity into a strategic discontinuity. Eventually I found a simpler solution: ‘strategic’ is a quality of the manager’s relationship to his own dependency needs. Thus for himself all discontinuities are strategic.
So where does this leave us with all those questions about how to change things? The answer of course is that you can’t change things only your relationship to things. The really difficult bit is realising that there are ‘things’ there in the first place. Regnancy casts a shadow in which it is difficult to see.
For me, what I take from Kelly’s notion of being a personal scientist is the quality of resistance: resisting others’ explanations presented as Science. This strategic relationship to Science comes alive for me when restated as a relationship to Employment: the self-employed employee.
Scientific explanation is explanation which holds itself forward as the essence of Truth. Business explanation is explanation which holds itself forward as the essence of Work. We are all employees. Some of us are self employed employees. We all stand in the shadow of the regnancy of others, particularly the regnancy of employment.
Once seen, a regnant knot simply becomes someone else’s explanation, and why make someone else’s explanation do when you could have one of your own?! So . . . the struggle for true voice is the struggle for critical relationship. From there explanations can be constructed. All that then remains is that your constructions be beautiful.

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