My work continues to evolve through an ongoing dialogue between practice and learning. The natural momentum of this process has led me to all corners of the globe and given me the opportunity to work and study with outstanding educators and practitioners in their respective fields.
A milestone along this road of personal and professional development was the fulfilment of my core psychotherapeutic training at the Minster Centre (1993 – 2000) which marked a move away from working purely as a structural/deep tissue therapist within the eastern traditions. Committed to integrating analytical humanistic and body psychotherapy approaches the course, founded and then directed by Helen Davis, stood out for me in two ways.
Firstly the emphasis on the experiential aspects of the work meant that personal experience became the foundation for theoretical input – rather than the other way round. Secondly and of equal importance the Minster offered the only bodywork syllabus to include Stanley Keleman’s work and literature – a pioneer in the field of Somatics and founder of Formative Psychology and Methodology®. This was an essential inclusion for me following an introduction to his work at a seminar in Holland a year or so earlier.
Ongoing work with Stanley and participation in the group practice at his centre in Berkeley California over the last 20 plus years has been a profound experience and continues to provide what I consider to be a crucial link in our understanding of the life of the body’. In practice this means a dynamic and much needed frame of reference for the body and its mind within a psychological domain.
Experience has also taught me that working at depth within any field of psychotherapeutic work mirrors the therapeutic process in terms of a need for a historical context. In this same vein tracing the origins of behaviour therapy during a subsequent CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) training gave me an appreciation of the shared roots between somatic and behavioural spheres.
This cutting edge training headed by Marcantonio Spada at South Bank University (2010-2012) re-emphasized the basic premise that we are goal orientated and that all behaviour could be considered an attempt to adapt to our circumstances. The problem occurs when, under pressure, we fall short and become entrenched in maladaptive coping strategies. This way of working has particular relevance when seeking to unravel destructive and compulsive patterns. These include the acts of worrying and ruminating, shown to contribute to persistent low mood and heightened anxiety..
From experience using a functional lens to contextualize an individual’s difficulties has the potential to increase self compassion in those that are self critical. It also links to the overarching existential picture in that the decision to access therapy can become an acknowledgement for a need to re-shape ourselves, to end a way of behaving. In doing so we change how we are in the world, how we are with others and with ourselves. Crisis, sometimes debilitating, then has the potential to become the catalyst for new beginnings.
To book a session or ask any questions feel free to contact me directly.
- 07790 562781