Expressive Arts Therapy with @EnsouExpressive

Like many professions, counselling has a requirement for continuous professional development; often I follow areas I already or things that come up in practice, but I like a wider range and a dose of the unexpected, so I joined @Counselling NorthWest, which runs twelve sessions a year, across the psychotherapy spectrum, from supervision to GDPR, via tapping meridians to release trauma.

In January,Emma Louise of @EnsouExpressive introduced me to te work of #NatalieRogers and her vision of The Creative Connection. This was intriguing, as she owned and then developed her inheritance from both parents. Carl Roger’s core conditions and the motive to heal, explore and gain insight, are the container for the unknown to come into awareness and be accepted into our being. 

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A review of "Integrating Counselling and Psychotherapy – directionality, synergy and social change"

In the studio of the prolific TV writer Paul Abbott, creator of hundreds of hours of innovative series (Shameless, State of Play, Clocking Off) is a poster with seven syllables: Work Hard and Be Nice to People.

Likewise, at the heart of the latest book by @MickCooper, Integrating Counselling and Psychotherapy – Directionality, Synergy and social change, which evidences academic study across psychology, sociology and philosophy, is a message just as pithy: do what works.

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How counselling helps

One of the things that happens when you study therapy is that people ask you what kind of therapy you do, and so you describe it.  Then they say their neighbour’s cousin once did something completely different. But you hold on to the key features, and one of the key features of a person-centred approach is that the counsellor has respect and empathy for the client. The counsellor must honestly feel that and the client in turn feels that respect and empathy from the counsellor.  In a way, counselling reaffirms your value as a human being.

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Endings, disruption and ‘unwelcome’ change

Last month an obstacle dropped into my life, with the grace and charm of a ton of dung. Someone made a decision that changed my long-term plan. I was horrified and the decision itself made no sense. After shock and outrage, came diplomacy, as I started to negotiate. Six weeks later, there’s no conclusion, but I grudgingly accept that it’s not the end of the world.  I’m not happy about it and I still hope to get what I want – but I’m using this enforced pause to review endings, disruption and ‘unwelcome’ change

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Open to change: the liminal state

Eight years ago, I got a phone call: a woman I knew asked if I was interested in working for a Buddhist-run business, based in a retail park in Cambridge.  “Are you busy?” she asked. I hesitated: I was standing in a carpark in Bolton, outside TKMaxx. “Not especially.”

I’d just finished nine months of an MA in writing for TV: it was competitive and intense.

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The Way It Is

A lot of my work is with words, talking and listening, but I pay as much attention to silence. A sudden in-breath, a twitch of anger, a look of sorrow at a memory all point to something.

Uncovering ‘the rules’
It’s tricky because the issues are hidden in our subconscious. Often, we carry a rule book of “should and shouldn’t” that is so familiar, we assume it must be true.

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