My formative training was in Humanistic Psychotherapeutic Counselling: a post-graduate diploma taught at Masters level at the University of Brighton. The fundamental emphasis of this training was relational and rooted in humanistic and existential philosophy, while taking into account developmental perspectives and the way in which we are shaped from our early life experiences. This has in turn shaped the way I perceive the work: I aim to be with you and the whole of your experience, acknowledging the here-and-now as much as the there-and-then.
Since this initial training I have continued to integrate and broaden my approach, working with my edges and growing into the embodied and relational ways we meet through various experiential groups and courses. These have and continue to influence and expand the way I think about psychotherapy, including authentic movement at the Karuna Institute in Devon, Brainspotting (a trauma therapy born out of EMDR and somatic experiencing), as well as working for a year with Nick Totton and what has been developed from his Embodied Relational Therapy training – which is in essence a relational body psychotherapy training that deeply acknowledges the embodied ground of the therapeutic endeavor. This is often spoken of and yet left neglected in speech in most talking therapies – with very little emphasis placed on what information is available for us both in being connected to our bodies and how we meet through them. My growth here is ongoing and I will be continuing my development in this tradition throughout 2020.
I also have an interest in questioning the increasingly management based culture of counselling and psychotherapy and have been engaged in a community and psychotherapy group at the Philadelphia Association: an institute renown for its critical approach to theory and established ways of thinking about mental distress. Arising from this connection to community has been the development of a men’s group and I will be facilitating this throughout the year. You can find more information about that here. Other group work will be scheduled later in the year, including mixed therapy groups and those focusing specifically on embodiment.