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Your Further Learning & Development

The aim of INTEGRA CPD is to develop a comprehensive cutting-edge programme for continuing professional development, in collaboration with practitioners like yourself and in response to your evolving needs and feedback – a programme of workshops and courses that is based on a broad-spectrum integration of all the therapeutic approaches and on embodied, relational and integral principles.

Read more about what we offer >>

How do we make our CPD learning impactful and relevant to our everyday practice? Should our own further development not be informed by the same therapeutic principles which underpin our work? In therapy as in teaching therapy, we aim to 'walk our talk' by focussing on the learning process rather than only the content - creating safe, creative and stimulating learning environments, suited to the variety of learning styles that therapists bring to the group. Our CPD workshops emphasise experiential engagement and the mind-body connection, integrating professional competence with personal process and self-awareness, combining left- and right-brain learning that translates directly into practice.

More about how we facilitate your learning >>

In our own work, we are aiming at an integration that draws on the theories, wisdom and gifts of all the therapeutic approaches. We welcome and attract therapists from across the modalities who find inspiration and challenge in the cross-fertilisation between different schools and orientations. You can read more about the main principles of our approach which can be summarised as: full-spectrum integrative - embodied/bodymind connection - relational - informed by modern neuroscience - systemic/multi-dimensional/integral - rooted in the 'Wounded Healer' - embracing uncertainty, conflict and paradox.

Read more about our integrative approach >>

Recent News from INTEGRA CPD

What are therapists looking for in their CPD training?

What have been your experiences of recent CPD events?
Useful? Boring? Inspiring? Effective?
How has it affected your practice?
See some evaluation feedback from a recent workshop.

Read more >>

Places becoming available: London, Ealing – Ongoing Professional Development Group for Experienced Therapists

Some places are becoming available in this ongoing cross-modality CPD group, meeting in Ealing, London for 3 weekends per year, building an integrative community of practitioners. Next dates for 2020-2021:

Dates in 2020: 28 & 29 March,  4 & 5 July, 10 & 11 October -

Dates in 2021: 20 & 21 March, 19 & 20 June, 2 & 3 October

Read the full description >>

Do not take our word for it! Want to know what our events are like?

Depending on topic, aims and group composition, our CPD events maximise experiential, embodied learning through engaging all aspects of your personal-professional being as a reflective practitioner. It's usually a fluid integration of individual and group process, supervision of client examples, skills practice in pairs and small groups, fish bowls in the middle of the group including demonstration sessions, plus theory and discussion. Michael has evolved a particular way of participants bringing significant vignettes of client-therapist interactions, and using two-chair work and embodied role-play to access the non-verbal aspects of the interaction. Have a look at what other participants are saying:

See Feedback and Testimonials >>

Book now for unique CPD coming up in May 2020:

"Oxford: Mastering the Creative Therapeutic Technique of Two-chair Work"

The last time Michael offered these special workshops was a few years ago, in 2015, and they are unlikely to be offered again in the near future. By attending all five days, most participants will significantly enhance their understanding and confidence in using this creative therapeutic technique. By focusing on the recurring problems and pitfalls that regularly arise when therapists try to use the technique, and developing an understanding why they are bound to arise, you will feel a whole lot more prepared to tackle them creatively, allowing you to use the technique in more elegant and effective ways.

Read the workshop description >>

This website is designed to address the continuing professional development (CPD) needs of counsellors, psychotherapists and therapeutic practitioners in general. If you are looking for a therapist, or want to work individually with one of us, please see the following websites:

Oxford Counselling and Psychotherapy

Michael has been running an Oxford-based referral service for about 28 years, helping you find the 'right' therapy for you. Assessment and referral sessions take place in West Oxford, and are primarily oriented towards Oxfordshire, but referrals and recommendations can also be made in London, occasionally nationwide and sometimes internationally.

Michael Soth

To work with Michael individually in Oxford, please use the contact form to e-mail him. He offers short and long-term individual and couple  psychotherapy, as well as individual supervision for therapeutic practitioners, coaches and consultants. He currently maintains a waiting list and is usually unable to take anybody on within less than six months.

OTS - Oxfordshire Therapy & Self-Development Centres

Michael is a founding member and director of this Oxfordshire-wide organisation that has dedicated itself to making counselling and psychotherapy more available, accessible and affordable to the general public, by offering a broad-spectrum diversity of approaches and practitioners, and matching clients to therapists to generate maximum engagement and effectiveness through prioritising 'quality of relationship' between client and therapist, the most significant factor for good outcomes in therapy. Michael is training director for OTS, supporting the continuing professional development of the community of practitioners.

All published articles & papers / presentations / hand-outs & teaching materials

You can now find all our writing, a list of all presentations (many of them available as pdf's) and all Michael's hand-outs in our new Resources section of this site.

See all Articles & Papers >>
See all Presentations >>
See all Hand-outs >>
See all Recommended Books >>
Audio >> - more mp3's to come

Since June 2013 Michael has been publishing a blog at Psychotherapy Excellence - the UK's national portal for CPD - on the dilemmas of continuing professional development in the 'impossible profession'. To make it easier for you to follow the sequence of entries (as they are really meant to build on each other step-by-step), he has created a dedicated blog site. If you have missed any of the entries, having them all in one place like that will make it easy to catch up. Here is the link:
The Impossible Profession: Counselling & Psychotherapy

Michael has been interviewed several times now for webcasts on various topics, including 'What is psychotherapy?' (see preview) and 'The embodied phenomenology of enactment' (see preview). You can find these webcasts, which feature interviews with many other well-known therapists, on sale at: Psychotherapy Excellence.

Forthcoming Psychotherapy & Counselling CPD Workshops, Courses, & Events

Oct
4
Sun
2020
Oxford: Mastering the Creative Therapeutic Technique of Two-chair Work @ OTS-Oxford Therapy Centre
Oct 4 @ 10:00 – Oct 5 @ 17:00

Workshop series postponed until later in 2020/2021 - join our 3-hour online Zoom meeting (2 May)

We will find a new sequence of dates for this series of 5 CPD days, with everybody who enrolled for it. In the meantime, I am offering a Zoom Meeting instead on Saturday, 2 May between 10.00 and 13.00.

Please use the booking form to enrol for the Zoom meeting - the session is free, but we invite donations/contributions.

Solutions to the 2-chair technique's recurring pitfalls

Anticipating and understanding the obstacles and problems inherent in the technique and making therapeutic and transformational use of them

When it comes to shifting the focus of therapeutic interaction from 'talking about' to 'exploring the experience', there are few techniques more useful than 'empty-chair' or 'two-chair' work (this applies to supervision as well as therapy).
However, when therapists risk using the technique, it often does not produce the intended or intuited results. Having started with what seemed like a burning, vibrant issue, the spark gets lost, and the interaction ‘goes flat’ or starts going round in circles.

"From many years of using the technique myself, as well as teaching and supervising it, I have concluded there are some built-in recurring pitfalls which are inherent in it. When we understand why these obstacles and pitfalls are necessarily bound to occur, we can anticipate and prepare for them and address them as they arise. This can actually enhance our use of the technique and make it more elegant and effective."

"I am expecting that in terms of the micro-detail of therapeutic technique (what you actually do and say as a therapist and how and in what sequence and with what timing), these days will be amongst the most specific and useful you will ever do. In terms of this particular technique, it's as close to a 'recipe book' or ‘manual’ of therapeutic intervention as is feasible when what we are really interested in is the aliveness and spontaneity of the client-therapist interaction."

This unique series of 5 CPD days with Michael Soth, starting with an in-depth weekend workshop (2 & 3 May 2020), followed by three further days, is designed to engender both detailed knowledge and skill as well as confidence and authority, whatever level of experience you are currently bringing to this type of work. The follow-on days are spaced out in such a way that participants can apply their learning in practice during the weeks in between, and then bring their experience back for deeper reflection and further learning.

The 'empty-chair' technique or 'two-chair work' is one of the best-known and widely-used humanistic methods. The technique invites/allows the client to embody the felt reality of particular relationship difficulties they feel caught in and bring them to life (rather than ‘talking about’ them), by spatially - and therefore emotionally - separating out the protagonists of otherwise diffuse internal conversations and ruminations. This can take the shape of psychodrama or role-play of the dialogue with actual others, or it can simply be an externalising and enacting of internal, fantasised or dreamt dynamics.

One of the advantages of the technique is that it can be applied fluidly to both external and internal relationships, often helping the client not only to see, but to feel the parallels and connections between internal and external ways of relating which are at the root of what perpetuates unsatisfying, polarised or destructive relationships.

Undoubtedly, the technique has many therapeutic uses and benefits, and can facilitate powerful, transformative experiences. But when therapists attempt to use it, they frequently report in supervision that it did not work, that it 'went flat', or that the client self-consciously refused to 'perform'.

How can we anticipate and deal with these recurring obstacles?

Rather than setting ourselves (and the client) up for the pressure of the technique having to produce a 'good' outcome, let's understand the inherent principles of the technique and how the dialogue is actually bound to 'go flat'. Based on that understanding, we can then pay attention to how it does go flat when it does and make that awareness useful for the particular dialogue we have set up in the first place. This kind of stance takes care of the usual ‘self-consciousness’ or 'performance anxiety' associated with the use of the technique (for both client and therapist), and helps therapists maintain the exploratory intention inherent in the approach.

Although the technique arises from within a Gestalt paradigm and fits and belongs with the principles of that holistic approach and its underlying field theory, it has been taken up and is being used by a wide variety of other therapeutic schools, often without practitioners even knowing about its origins in Gestalt. But in order to address the inherent pitfalls and difficulties of the technique, the perspectives and paradigms of other approaches are very useful, especially body-oriented and psychoanalytic perspectives, but also, for example, NLP and CBT. Because I bring this broad-spectrum perspective to the technique, the workshop should be suitable for practitioners from across the modalities and orientations.

For more detailed information about the background, format and content of the weekend workshop, download the leaflet. Download the booking form.

An edited transcript of an interview with Michael, addressing key points of the forthcoming CPD workshops on two-chair work; same interview as an mp3 audio file.

 

 

Oct
10
Sat
2020
London, Ealing – Ongoing Professional Development Group for Experienced Therapists @ Overton House
Oct 10 @ 11:00 – Oct 11 @ 17:00

This group is for experienced therapists only (practising for 10 years or more), and has had a consistent core group of participants for the last few years (since 2012), meeting 5 - 6 days per year, usually for a whole weekend (10.00 - 17.00 both Saturday & Sunday). There is a 'pool' of currently 12 participants, and 4 more places are available from October 2019.

The group consists mainly of integrative psychotherapists with a relational orientation, many of whom had a humanistic training initially, many years ago. Over the years the culture of the group has evolved, from an emphasis on CPD and supervision to include increasingly personal and group process. The format over a typical weekend varies creatively between working in the whole group, sessions in the middle of the group, small group work, with Michael facilitating in collaboration with the emergent processes in the group. Occasionally, Michael will give some theoretical input relevant to the process, or summarise the emerging themes.

See the dedicated page for detailed info

Nov
22
Sun
2020
North London – Ongoing Integrative CPD Group @ The Nebula
Nov 22 @ 10:00 – 17:00

An ongoing, broad-spectrum integrative group

This semi-closed group has been running for several years now (since 2015), with new participants joining the 'pool' of members as places become available. Led by one of the most experienced integrative trainers in the UK, this group will provide an ideal relational container for your ongoing development as a therapist. By immersing yourself in a diverse group of colleagues from different schools and orientations, you will widen your perspective, deepen your practice, draw both inspiration and challenge from the co-created wide-ranging experiential work and have a reference point as well as resources and teaching to support your further development.

You can find a detailed description of the format and objectives of this group on the dedicated page.

Dec
12
Sat
2020
Poznan (Poland): Embodied-Relational Workshop Series (3 weekends) @ Poznan (Poland)
Dec 12 @ 11:00 – Dec 13 @ 18:00

This series of 3 weekends is organised for a group of - mainly Gestalt-trained - Polish psychotherapists by Maria Pelko. There will be translation between Polish and English.

Dates: 18 & 19 July 2020 - 26 & 27 September 2020 - 12 & 13 December 2020

The workshop series will cover the following topics:

1. How to Work when Therapy isn’t Working

2. Embodied Approaches to Therapeutic Theories of Developmental Wounding and Habitual Patterns

3. Embodied Perspectives on Couples and Couple Work

4. Embodiment & Touch

A Polish version pf the workshop description can be found here.

 

How To Work When Therapy Isn't Working?

Over recent years the most exciting developments in our field have come via neuroscience, psychotherapy integration (i.e. cross-fertilisation between approaches) and the inclusion of the body. We now understand that whatever psychological wounds the client is bringing to us and into the consulting room, we will become involved and implicated with them in ways that go far beyond verbal interaction. The term ‘enactment’ is being used to describe the ways in which the therapist’s subjectivity is - inevitably and necessarily - drawn into the client’s wounding, leading to impasses and breakdowns in the working alliance.

There is great therapeutic potential in these cycles of rupture and repair that occur in the client-therapist relationship, but much of it occurs subliminally. So if it occurs unconsciously, outside of awareness, how can we perceive and understand enactment and respond creatively from within it? Whilst there are a multitude of ways of ignoring, avoiding, blocking and counteracting enactment, there is also increasing understanding that it has deep transformative potential*.

This CPD workshop is dedicated to deepening our engagement with difficult dynamics in the therapeutic relationship, and to finding ways of accessing the therapeutic potential locked within them. It is open to all practising therapists, and suitable for practitioners from all modalities.

What you can expect to learn on the day …

  • perceive the ways in which the client’s wound enters the consulting room
  • register significant and charged moments in the relationship
  • understand these moments in the context of the ‘three kinds of contact'
  • collect in these moments body-mind information which would otherwise remain subliminal
  • collect in these moments images, fantasies, scenarios, narratives which deepen our engagement from within the enactment
  • link these moments to the client’s habitual relational patterns
  • process the charge and pressure impacting on the therapist
  • begin to consider interventions for relieving or intensifying the enactment pressure

* ‘Deep’ psychotherapy, according to Allan Schore, for example (i.e. therapy that addresses early developmental injury and attachment and character patterns) depends on apprehending, engaging in and transforming spontaneous enactments which occur in the interaction between client and therapist in spite of the client’s repressive and dissociative defences.

Michael Soth is an experienced therapist, supervisor and trainer who has been practising as a therapist and teaching therapists since 1986. He is one of the foremost body psychotherapists and trainers practising in the UK today. For many years he worked as the Training Director of the Chiron Centre for Body Psychotherapy, and is a frequent presenter at professional conferences. He has been studying the significance of enactments and their therapeutic uses since the mid-1990’s, and has developed a unique relational body-mind approach that builds on an integration of humanistic and psychoanalytic perspectives. He is co-editor of the Handbook of Body Psychotherapy and Somatic Psychology, published in 2015.

This event will be open to psychological therapists (including trainees) from all modalities.
Early bird price before 22nd May 2019: £90, or after £99
Includes parking & refreshments but not lunch.   CPD certificates will be supplied

TO BOOK: https://www.bramhamtherapy.co.uk/events/

Jan
30
Sat
2021
North London – Ongoing Integrative CPD Group @ The Nebula
Jan 30 @ 10:00 – Jan 31 @ 17:00

An ongoing, broad-spectrum integrative group

This semi-closed group has been running for several years now (since 2015), with new participants joining the 'pool' of members as places become available. Led by one of the most experienced integrative trainers in the UK, this group will provide an ideal relational container for your ongoing development as a therapist. By immersing yourself in a diverse group of colleagues from different schools and orientations, you will widen your perspective, deepen your practice, draw both inspiration and challenge from the co-created wide-ranging experiential work and have a reference point as well as resources and teaching to support your further development.

You can find a detailed description of the format and objectives of this group on the dedicated page.

Mar
20
Sat
2021
London, Ealing – Ongoing Professional Development Group for Experienced Therapists @ Overton House
Mar 20 @ 11:00 – Mar 21 @ 17:00

This group is for experienced therapists only (practising for 10 years or more), and has had a consistent core group of participants for the last few years (since 2012), meeting 5 - 6 days per year, usually for a whole weekend (10.00 - 17.00 both Saturday & Sunday). There is a 'pool' of currently 12 participants, and 4 more places are available from October 2019.

The group consists mainly of integrative psychotherapists with a relational orientation, many of whom had a humanistic training initially, many years ago. Over the years the culture of the group has evolved, from an emphasis on CPD and supervision to include increasingly personal and group process. The format over a typical weekend varies creatively between working in the whole group, sessions in the middle of the group, small group work, with Michael facilitating in collaboration with the emergent processes in the group. Occasionally, Michael will give some theoretical input relevant to the process, or summarise the emerging themes.

See the dedicated page for detailed info

Jun
13
Sun
2021
North London – Ongoing Integrative CPD Group @ The Nebula
Jun 13 @ 10:00 – 17:00

An ongoing, broad-spectrum integrative group

This semi-closed group has been running for several years now (since 2015), with new participants joining the 'pool' of members as places become available. Led by one of the most experienced integrative trainers in the UK, this group will provide an ideal relational container for your ongoing development as a therapist. By immersing yourself in a diverse group of colleagues from different schools and orientations, you will widen your perspective, deepen your practice, draw both inspiration and challenge from the co-created wide-ranging experiential work and have a reference point as well as resources and teaching to support your further development.

You can find a detailed description of the format and objectives of this group on the dedicated page.

Jun
19
Sat
2021
London, Ealing – Ongoing Professional Development Group for Experienced Therapists @ Overton House
Jun 19 @ 11:00 – Jun 20 @ 17:00

This group is for experienced therapists only (practising for 10 years or more), and has had a consistent core group of participants for the last few years (since 2012), meeting 5 - 6 days per year, usually for a whole weekend (10.00 - 17.00 both Saturday & Sunday). There is a 'pool' of currently 12 participants, and 4 more places are available from October 2019.

The group consists mainly of integrative psychotherapists with a relational orientation, many of whom had a humanistic training initially, many years ago. Over the years the culture of the group has evolved, from an emphasis on CPD and supervision to include increasingly personal and group process. The format over a typical weekend varies creatively between working in the whole group, sessions in the middle of the group, small group work, with Michael facilitating in collaboration with the emergent processes in the group. Occasionally, Michael will give some theoretical input relevant to the process, or summarise the emerging themes.

See the dedicated page for detailed info

Sep
25
Sat
2021
North London – Ongoing Integrative CPD Group @ The Nebula
Sep 25 @ 10:00 – 17:00

An ongoing, broad-spectrum integrative group

This semi-closed group has been running for several years now (since 2015), with new participants joining the 'pool' of members as places become available. Led by one of the most experienced integrative trainers in the UK, this group will provide an ideal relational container for your ongoing development as a therapist. By immersing yourself in a diverse group of colleagues from different schools and orientations, you will widen your perspective, deepen your practice, draw both inspiration and challenge from the co-created wide-ranging experiential work and have a reference point as well as resources and teaching to support your further development.

You can find a detailed description of the format and objectives of this group on the dedicated page.

Oct
2
Sat
2021
London, Ealing – Ongoing Professional Development Group for Experienced Therapists @ Overton House
Oct 2 @ 11:00 – Oct 3 @ 17:00

This group is for experienced therapists only (practising for 10 years or more), and has had a consistent core group of participants for the last few years (since 2012), meeting 5 - 6 days per year, usually for a whole weekend (10.00 - 17.00 both Saturday & Sunday). There is a 'pool' of currently 12 participants, and 4 more places are available from October 2019.

The group consists mainly of integrative psychotherapists with a relational orientation, many of whom had a humanistic training initially, many years ago. Over the years the culture of the group has evolved, from an emphasis on CPD and supervision to include increasingly personal and group process. The format over a typical weekend varies creatively between working in the whole group, sessions in the middle of the group, small group work, with Michael facilitating in collaboration with the emergent processes in the group. Occasionally, Michael will give some theoretical input relevant to the process, or summarise the emerging themes.

See the dedicated page for detailed info

Jan
22
Sat
2022
North London – Ongoing Integrative CPD Group @ The Nebula
Jan 22 @ 10:00 – Jan 23 @ 17:00

An ongoing, broad-spectrum integrative group

This semi-closed group has been running for several years now (since 2015), with new participants joining the 'pool' of members as places become available. Led by one of the most experienced integrative trainers in the UK, this group will provide an ideal relational container for your ongoing development as a therapist. By immersing yourself in a diverse group of colleagues from different schools and orientations, you will widen your perspective, deepen your practice, draw both inspiration and challenge from the co-created wide-ranging experiential work and have a reference point as well as resources and teaching to support your further development.

You can find a detailed description of the format and objectives of this group on the dedicated page.

Feb
5
Sat
2022
London, Ealing – Ongoing Professional Development Group for Experienced Therapists @ Overton House
Feb 5 @ 11:00 – Feb 6 @ 17:00

This group is for experienced therapists only (practising for 10 years or more), and has had a consistent core group of participants for the last few years (since 2012), meeting 5 - 6 days per year, usually for a whole weekend (10.00 - 17.00 both Saturday & Sunday). There is a 'pool' of currently 12 participants, and 4 more places are available from October 2019.

The group consists mainly of integrative psychotherapists with a relational orientation, many of whom had a humanistic training initially, many years ago. Over the years the culture of the group has evolved, from an emphasis on CPD and supervision to include increasingly personal and group process. The format over a typical weekend varies creatively between working in the whole group, sessions in the middle of the group, small group work, with Michael facilitating in collaboration with the emergent processes in the group. Occasionally, Michael will give some theoretical input relevant to the process, or summarise the emerging themes.

See the dedicated page for detailed info

See Calendar with all Events >>

INTEGRA CPD - Trainers

Michael Soth
Michael SothIntegral-Relational Body Psychotherapist (UKCP)
Michael is an Oxford-based integral-relational Body Psychotherapist, trainer and supervisor, with more than 32 years' experience of practising from an integrative perspective. He was Training Director at the Chiron Centre for Body Psychotherapy for nearly 20 years, and has been involved with teaching counselling and psychotherapy since 1986.
More about Michael >>