Dancing between risk and stability in psychotherapy
A CPD weekend workshop for counsellors & psychotherapists with Nick Totton & Michael Soth
Download the leaflet: click here.
According to many complexity theorists, creativity and growth occur 'at the edge of chaos': in the border zone between the known and the unknown, where small changes can lead to big effects. A bit like the intertidal zone of the seashore, where large amounts of energy are available, more than can be found either on the beach or in the ocean.
What does this suggest for therapy? Many clients - and therapists - believe that therapy is all about change.
On the other hand, many clients feel victimised by change, and long to maintain the status quo, or return to a previous experience.
The polarity of risk and stability touches upon and overlaps with other polarities: stillness and movement, being and doing, non-attachment and passion, state and process.
So is therapy 'really about' risk and change, or stability and safety?
The paradoxical theory of change - “change happens when we (and our therapist) accept what is” - conveys an attitude that is neither attached to the status quo nor invested in forcing change. This workshop invites you to push the paradox further. The more we include our spontaneous embodied, emotional, imaginal and mental processes in our awareness, the more paradoxical the tensions between risk and stability become: co-creating each other, deconstructing each other, until each subtly turns into the other.
Following the therapeutic process at this level of paradox requires attention to bodymind and systemic micro-detail and a therapeutic presence that is anchored and stable as well as nimble and mercurial. The weekend is an opportunity to dance at your own growing edge as a person and a therapist, to deepen your own idiosyncratic therapeutic style and find your own way to inhabit the paradox of risk and stability.