Skills in Gestalt Counselling & Psychotherapy

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SAGE, Sep 10, 2001 - Psychology - 219 pages
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`I looked forward to reading this book and was not disappointed. It reflects the best of the Gestalt approach - it is clear, challenging and refreshing. Emphasis is placed on the importance of a safe and supporting framework within which therapeutic work takes place, and this is reflected in the reader feeling a real connection with the authors.

The humanistic element of Gestalt comes through clearly in this book. Not only is this an important read for those training in Gestalt but it is equally important for trainees and established therapists in the humanistic and integrated field′ -

`This book was put on our reading list for diploma students in humanistic counselling, and it has been snapped up by the students′ - Bee Springwood, Self & Society

′Written in a clear and accessible style, this slim volume will be valued as a wise guide in attaining the necessary skills for a Gestalt flavoured clinical practice... It is in the reference material from Gestalt practitioners across the world that the authors provide a succinct integration of Gestalt theory and practice from these last fifty years. This is one of the understated but powerful aspects of the book... I recommend that all Gestalt practitioners get a copy of Skills in Gestalt Counselling & Psychotherapy for their professional library and make sure that it is mandatory reading for their students′ - Dorothy E Siminovitch, A Gestalt Guide for the Journey of Skill Development

′An informative book, well worth the money, that will enrich the practice of any practitioner′ - Stress News

Skills in Gestalt Counselling & Psychotherapy is a practical introduction to the different techniques used at each stage of the counselling process. The book takes the reader through the process from beginning to termination and focuses on skills which arise out of Gestalt theory as well as those invoked by the counselling relationship.

Accessibly written by experienced practitioners, the book gives clear guidelines on: establishing the relationship; assessment and goal-setting; developing the client′s awareness; maintaining the relationship and bringing the counselling to an end.

The authors also examine the spiritual dimension of counselling and offer guidance on some of the special considerations affecting counsellors such as the context in which they are working, the duration of the relationship, and particular problems with which clients present. For all those training in Gestalt or who wish to sharpen their skills as practitioners, this will be essential reading.


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Preparing for the Journey
Phenomenology and Field Theory
Establishing the Therapeutic Relationship
Assessment and Diagnosis
Treatment Considerations
Strengthening Support
Practice Issues
Timelimited counselling
Group work
Dream work
the threat of suicide acute psychotic episodes
The Wider Field
Ethical dilemmas

Modifications to Contact
Unfinished Business
Transference and Countertransference
Body Process and Regression
Ending the Journey

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About the author (2001)

Phil Joyce works in West London as a trainer, supervisor, psychotherapist and consultant and has also worked in a variety of mental health settings since 1979. He has worked as an approved psychiatric social worker in London and has considerable experience of multidisciplinary teams and working with disturbed people. He is a primary tutor on the MSc course in Gestalt Psychotherapy at Metanoia Institute, London and a visiting tutor on the Integrative psychotherapy programme also at Metanoia Institute. He has given many presentations at International conferences over the last 15 years and is an active member of the Gestalt community. Phil’s particular interest continues to be in mental health. He currently specializes in trauma treatment and is an accredited EMDR Supervisor and Consultant. His other abiding interest is in the transpersonal dimensions of human experience and he finds that Gestalt brings a new and enlivening perspective to both these areas of interest.

Charlotte Sills is a UKCP registered psychotherapist in private practice and a supervisor, trainer and consultant in a variety of settings. She has been working in the field of psychological therapies since 1979 and is a BACP senior accredited supervisor, a Teaching and Supervising Transactional Analyst and a Visiting Professor at Middlesex University. Until 2007 she was also part of the Leadership Team at Metanoia Institute where she remains a member of the faculty. Another interest is in the interface between therapy and coaching and she is a member of faculty of the Masters in Executive Coaching and Professor of Coaching at Ashridge Business School, UK.

Charlotte believes that all human systems – from friendships to organizations – are about people in relationship, and she sees Gestalt as an ideal approach for facilitating effective, vibrant and satisfying relating.

Charlotte has published widely in the field of counselling and psychotherapy, including An Introduction to Gestalt with Phil Lapworth and Billy Desmond (SAGE, 2012) and Coaching Relationships (edited with Erik de Haan, Libri Press, 2012).

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