Relevant to counsellors and psychotherapists of all approaches and modalities, this blog contains bits and pieces of writing, recent drafts and current thinking as well as commentary on topical themes. Some of these posts constitute substantial discussions of important topics and are more like long articles, some are fairly short and snappy and to the point.
This blog also includes a subcategory 'Tutorials' (so you can search for them separately) - these address basic issues of 21st-century psychotherapy.
Relevant to counsellors and psychotherapists of all approaches and modalities, this blog contains news about our programme, projects and new developments as well as other interesting new about resources, events and conferences from across the field.
When counselling, psychotherapy, psychoanalysis and associated disciplines are called 'impossible professions', this is often understood as a tongue-in-cheek conversational quip, a collective exclamation of mock exasperation: "What can you do? It’s impossible!” - and then we continue as before...
But I have come to think that the quip points to an important, even essential, truth about our work: the therapeutic profession - and the ‘helping relationship’ generally – hinges on a fundamental paradox, which the quip points to, but does not help us to understand, let alone fully address. Having investigated the kernel of truth inherent in that notion over the last few decades, I now conclude that it has the potential to profoundly enhance our work: when we grasp the nettle which is the impossibility at the heart of our profession, the depth, breadth and effectiveness of our therapy increases dramatically.
Do therapists - across the approaches and modalities - overestimate the degree of working alliance they have with their clients?
If so, why? What are the consequences? What do we do about it?
Online Enquiry: Overestimating the Working Alliance?
Investigating our shared ‘implicit relational knowing’ about the working alliance by considering the question: Do therapists tend to over-estimate the…Continue reading »
Welcome to our new INTEGRA CPD website
Finally, after about 9 months' work since our wonderful WordPress webdesigner finalised the basic framework, the new site is ready…Continue reading »
London, Ealing – Ongoing Professional Development Group for Experienced Therapists
This group is for experienced therapists only (practising for 10 years or more), and has had a consistent core group…Continue reading »
Interview with Michael: “The Relational Turn in Body Psychotherapy”
In this interview, Nancy Eichhorn was asking about Michael’s background and contribution to the Relational Body Psychotherapy Panel at the…Continue reading »
Visionary psychoanalyst Harold Searles has died
Harold Searles has died - see obituary and commentaries on this visionary psychoanalyst. There is also a piece of writing…Continue reading »
Oxford bi-monthly Supervision & Personal-Professional Development Group
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Jungian Analyst James Hollis: Creating a Life: Finding Your Individual Path (2000)
To those of us in mid-life, James Hollis has written several relevant and highly recommended books (see list below). This…Continue reading »
Defining the working alliance – 2
Ralph R Greenson (1967) Technique and Practice of Psychoanalysis Greenson defined the working alliance as: “the relatively non-and neurotic, rational,…Continue reading »
Interview for Psychotherapy Excellence webcast series
A series of 10 interviews by Psychotherapy Excellence, starting with the question: What is Psychotherapy? (Michael's interview is session 8…Continue reading »
Allowing ourselves to be constructed and the enactment of the bad object
A blog post written in preparation for a CPD workshop in Oxford on 4 March 2018 How safe does the…Continue reading »
CPD Workshop: How To Work When Therapy Isn’t Working?
Embodied Pathways Towards Resolving Impasses, Breakdowns and Enactments This is a workshop I have been running over recent years, in…Continue reading »
Supershrinks – What’s the secret of their success?
This 2008 paper "Supershrinks - What's the secret of their success?" by Scott Miller, Mark Hubble, and Barry Duncan is…Continue reading »
Integrative Trauma Therapy – CPD Workshops in Oxford with Morit Heitzler 2016/17
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Exeter: Body-oriented CPD Weekend Group 2017 with Nick Totton & Michael
This weekend CPD group, organised by experienced TA therapist Judy Shaw in Devon around Exeter, will run over 4 weekends…Continue reading »
Integrative Trauma Therapy – 3 CPD Workshops in Oxford with Morit Heitzler
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What actually is ‘Quality of Relationship’ and can it be Enhanced?
It's an important question, as it is the nebulous catch-all phrase increasingly used to capture the essential factor which apparently…Continue reading »
Does Derren Brown’s ‘Hero at 30,000 feet’ constitute a challenge to therapy?
If you have not seen that particular episode of Derren Brown's work, here is the link to the full program…Continue reading »