Skills in Gestalt Counselling & Psychotherapy

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SAGE, Sep 10, 2001 - Psychology - 216 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 teaches at Metanoia Institute, London and a Gestalt practitioner and supervisor in private practice.

Charlotte Sills MA, MSc (Psychotherapy) is a UKCP registered psychotherapist in private practice and a supervisor, trainer and consultant in a variety of settings. She is a BACP senior accredited supervisor, a Teaching and Supervising Transactional Analyst and a Visiting Professor at Middlesex University.

Charlotte has been working in the field of psychological therapies since 1979, at first as counsellor then manager of Hounslow SSD’s Bereavement Project, then qualifying in psychotherapy in 1986.  She has worked as tutor and supervisor on a range of training courses nationally and internationally. She was also, until 2007, part of the Leadership Team at Metanoia Institute, London, where she remains a member of the faculty.  Another interest is in the interface between therapy and coaching and she works at Ashridge Business School, Herts where she is part of the tutor team of the Masters in Executive Coaching. 

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

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 Contracts in Counselling and Psychotherapy (2nd edition 2006 Sage) and Coaching Relationships (edited with Erik de Haan 2012 Libri Press).

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