Your Learning

Your Learning 2017-04-01T15:42:10+00:00
In this section, we give you an overview of our ideas regarding our learning and ongoing development as practitioners; and our conclusions regarding optimal learning processes drawn from being involved with training counsellors and therapists for about three decades.

Learning to be therapists - how?

  • How do people - generally - learn best ?
  • How are 'therapeutic skills' - specifically - learned best?
  • How do we best learn about 'people skills' and the helping relationship?
  • What kind of learning readily translates into therapeutic practice?
  • What kind of learning supports the 'reflective practitioner'?
Whatever currently established training in ‘people skills’ we look at, much of it does not actually follow through the therapeutic principles of our work into its approach to learning.

Instead, many courses are reminiscent of 'old' school - they borrow from traditional educational paradigms and are often based on academic, linear, left-brain teaching and supposedly uniform standards.

From a ‘people skills’ and therapeutic perspective, we find that there are many problems with such traditional teaching methods which tend to ignore the relational, communicative and social aspects of learning.

They also tend to emphasise the application of general principles and theories and therefore easily fall into ignoring the client’s and the practitioner’s unique and individual styles and their peculiar and particular meeting.

This is true for teaching and CPD in many helping professions, and to some extent also in coaching, counselling and psychotherapy training, inspite of strong elements of experiential learning.

Any fixed and set curriculum, any teaching based simply on application of theory to practice, any purely didactic approach tends to ignore our psychological depth as learners, both individually and as groups.

An emphasis on left-brain theoretical or academic knowledge, even if it is based on case material, has little helpful impact on our everyday practice. Such learning is often too linear to do justice to the complexities and immediacy of the therapeutic encounter.

People Skills and 'Right‑Brain' Learning

The recognition that ‘people skills’ depend crucially on right-brain-to-right-brain communication has not yet filtered through into most training programmes, but - if taken on board - will need to fundamentally change the way we structure and facilitate such learning, as well as turning our traditional training priorities and objectives upside down.

What kind of group and learning environments and activities best support our further development as practitioners?

What are the principles and features of CPD events that really enhance professional development?

What kind of CPD activities will engender all-round development of all your faculties and skills, as a person and as a practitioner?

Attention to the learning process (rather than learning content only)

On the basis of previous feedback, we recognise that what participants take away from our events are not mainly our theories, models or assumptions. What is more important even than a trainer’s therapeutic beliefs and theoretical framework - what in the end matters more to students and participants - is their approach to learning and teaching, their stance in relation to professional development: the learning process rather than the content.

We are predominantly concerned with enhancing your learning and process, not passing on ‘our’ concepts, or distributing ‘our’ ideas.
We are oriented towards you finding and enhancing your therapeutic stance and authority, your therapeutic approach and modality, and have no interest in converting you to ‘our’ way of working or thinking.

From a holistic-integral perspective, any learning process needs to do justice to our multiple intelligences and the social-relational nature of our learning as humans.

We therefore aim to create and facilitate learning environments and communities where profound personal-professional development can occur, based on the application of depth-psychological and therapeutic principles to our own continuing learning and development.