What is my “integrative” approach to psychotherapy and counselling?
The “integrative” approach to counselling allows a practitioner to draw on multiple models, theories and tools in order to provide a course of therapy tailored to the needs of the individual client. The famous American psychologist, Abraham Maslow said, “If you only have a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail”. To that end, rather than specialise in a single form of therapy I have studied several of the most effective and commonly used (see, “How I Work”). However, all my treatments tend to be underpinned by “Mindfulness” which is a meditative technique (more about that in a moment).
Maslow also said, “What is necessary to change a person is to change his awareness of himself”.
I have always believed that the route to greater happiness for an individual is through a greater understanding of himself. Through my studies I have found that there is no better route to self-knowledge than through meditation and therapies based on meditation.
“Within each of us there is an internal mental world – what I have come to think of as the sea inside – a wonderful rich place filled with thoughts and feelings, memories and dreams, hopes and wishes. It can also be a turbulent place where we experience the dark side of all those wonderful feelings and thoughts – fear, sorrow, dread, regret, nightmares”. A quote from Dr Daniel Siegel’s excellent book, “Mindsight: The New Science of Personal Transformation”.
When appropriate in my work, I try to link the development, structure and function of the brain to the concept of ‘mind’ – that intangible element of ourself that shapes our very personality; beliefs and values, thoughts and actions.
Mindfulness is a term being heard more and more these days. For example, the world renowned company, Google, offer a free mindfulness training course to their employees. The “Search Inside Yourself” course has been used by Google since 2007. “For many participants, it has been life changing, both at work and in their personal lives”. Chade-Meng Tan, GoogleEDU as the Head of Personal Growth.
Research has shown Mindfulness to be so effective that the NHS now includes it in their mental health programmes for both staff and patients and the British Government is now considering adding it to the National Curriculum in order that children learn this skill from an early age.
As part of the therapy I offer, I teach the principles of Mindfulness, how it works and how to implement it in your day-to-day life to bring about the positive changes you are looking for.
“We fear to know the fearsome and unsavory aspects of ourselves but we fear even more to know the godlike in ourselves”. Abraham Maslow.