This is a one-day CPD workshop with Michael for members of Oxfordshire Therapy & Self-Development - a regional network of therapists attempting to offer a broad-spectrum comprehensive therapeutic service (incorporating all kinds of psychological therapies, disciplines, therapeutic approaches, and also including group therapy, workshops and other educational events for the general public). We are hoping to build it into a thriving community of practitioners who will network, develop together and provide a ground-breaking broad-spectrum service for the region. We will introduce the project to the Oxford Psychotherapy Society at one of its regular meetings on Wed. evening, November 4th.
If you live in the area and want to join, contact the director of OTS, Justin Smith via the website.
This CPD workshop is designed as a space for us to explore and deepen our awareness of our ‘habitual position’ as therapists/healers, and to reflect on how it relates to our own woundedness. Our ‘habitual position’ is manifest to some extent in our therapeutic beliefs and assumptions (i.e. the models and theoretical constructs we subscribe to), but more importantly in our embodied presence and the space it creates in our consulting room. The stance we take as a therapist - how we ‘construct’ our role and what we (unconsciously) assume we do and are ‘meant’ to be doing - generates a particular relational field and atmosphere around us, which goes well beyond our conscious intentions as therapists.
When we investigate the roots of our ‘habitual position’ as therapists, we find its origins in our therapeutic training, in our own therapy and before and prior to all that in our position and role within our family (as well as the culture it is embedded in). Rather than perpetuating the classical one-person psychology assumption that the role of the therapist requires us to be a ‘fully processed’, ‘self-actualised’ or ‘completely analysed’ human being before we are qualified to be let loose on the unsuspecting public, the notion of the ‘wounded healer’ helps us embrace our own woundedness as an inescapable and potentially even quite helpful aspect of what we bring to the therapeutic relationship.
The more embracing we become of our own woundedness, the less we need to protect our clients from the pain of feeling theirs. That in turn opens up the possibility to recognise the paradoxical heart of our profession: that the healing of the client’s wounding in therapy is inseparable from the enactment of that wounding via the therapy and through the therapist. Therefore, in order to access the transformative possibilities of therapy, I need to be capable of allowing that enactment of the wounding: i.e. I need to be able to allow to myself to become and be - and to be experienced - not only as the wounded, but also as the wounding healer.
This workshop is an opportunity to explore the ever infinite delicate, intriguing and exciting edges of your own process in these areas of your psyche and your relationship with others. It is in the nature of the topic that the bulk of the day will be experiential. However, for the exploration to translate effectively into your practice, we will need to include some theoretical reflections which will allow us to generalise and apply our learning across a wide range of clients and contexts.