Human Social Functioning

cover S in SocThe Human Social Functioning (HSF) method was devised by a real person, Eugene (John) Heimler, out of his own dire experience. It enables us to see ourselves as whole people within our daily context and to work from that point to achieve our goals. For more historical detail see

At our best, we human beings seem able to use frustrations, even disasters, to motivate us to make changes for the better. We know we function and cope with life much better when some of what we do, and the relationships we have, mean something to us. At our worst then, we have no energy, feel like victims, cogs in a machine, we lose respect for ourselves and others, feel a failure and lose the will to get out of bed, or just the will to live.
Human energy is related to our biological and psychological make up, our social interactions, and our physical environment. We need to know who we are, to have a sense of belonging and to grasp a sense of purpose. All or some of this gives some meaning to our lives.  The HSF Scale highlights the main issues we face.

The scale contains three sections: positive and negative indices and a set of questions giving an overview.  The first two sections each cover five areas of human life experience  (work, family, friendship, finance and personal life) while the last enables a more existential overview.  Answering the HSF Scale questions (simply as yes, no or perhaps) is a reliable and authentic way of demonstrating our frustrations and our satisfactions. Responses to the questions provide an indication as to how energy is being used and by how much, whether positively (providing satisfaction) or negatively (experiencing frustrations).  There is a simple scoring system and the results can be drawn out as a diagram to illustrate the balance of current functioning in terms of frustration and satisfaction showing more clearly the current energy balance and in what areas energy might be blocked.

The scale can show how well you are functioning and highlights what needs attention now. In this method you will maintain control and choose the actions that you need to take for yourself. The unique aspects of HSF help you to see yourself as a whole person – wider than what is impacting upon you at the moment.  But if you want to change, you need to be willing to work at it!  In HSF the control is in your hands but you are accompanied on your journey as you move towards your desired outcome.  This gives you the control over your progress towards your goal.

The following ‘Prezi’ gives a little overview over the Heimler Scale

What can you expect from this HSF Scale session?

At the first session, I will need to get some background about your life, family and circumstance and I will invite you to talk about what’s happening in your life and  why you are seeking help.  I will explain the questionnaire to  you and either ask you to complete it in the session, or to take it away with you to complete in your own time (to be returned to me for analysis).  From those results, I will draw out a picture that we call a ‘life diagram’ that shows your current experience in terms of your areas of satisfaction and the areas of frustration.

The life diagram plots your resources and where there are blocks

The life diagram plots your resources and where there are blocks


In the example, the blue lines show the satisfaction and you can see that most areas show moderate levels of satisfaction, strongest in her family relationships; while the red area shows the frustration that this person is facing.  So this person is probably coping fairly well except that her working life and money matters may be a bit of a struggle.

When we meet again, I will share the results of the analysis with you and we will look together at where your energy is being used and where it is a bit blocked.  This will give some guidance as to areas in which you need to work to achieve a healthy balance between frustration and satisfaction. You would then choose where you might choose to concentrate your energy for change.