'If you’re thinking of counselling couples, come ‘into the trenches’ with me, it’s beyond worthwhile, I promise you.
It feels like vital work now in the swirl of cultural chaos. This is work at which I think I’ve most excelled, as the demands align with my character. I’m all about Reality, tearing down limiting Comfort Zones, honest challenge, and emotional honesty, so don’t expect a dry academic lecture.
I studied an esoteric, brand new, holistic, spiritual, process-oriented psychotherapy based in the USA which drew widely from the theories including Gendlin on Focusing, Levine on trauma, NLP, Gestalt, Buddhist core process, Sufi and Native American spiritual philosophy, BodyMind theories from Hakomi and Chiron, and the principles of nonviolence and following the process.
Couple work needs a greater dimension of course, but the process is still my core approach.
My spiritual driver is always to have the courage to embrace conflict, and explore and resolve it.
As the Late Petrushka Clarkson said, in all human existence, Relationship Is Everything.
I’m a Big Picture person, a student of The Macrocosm, a follower of Change, both agency and spontaneous, and my core role on this Planet has always seemed to be to communicate, whether through journalism, which I did professionally for twenty years, or songwriting and performing, which I’ve done alongside both my professional careers for half a century. Therapy should not exist in a bubble, we are all in the World and this is our contribution.
We should all be on a mission to inspire, evoke, and yes, sometimes provoke, and right now, in the chaos of the World, be there to facilitate the process for people with relationship struggle, whether it’s to build, enhance, or mindfully dismantle them.
I come from a comically dysfunctional, ‘working class’, extended family and watched my miserable parents battle it out for 25 years until my father died. My self assigned role was to ‘hold the space’ for all that conflict, I couldn’t fix it, but it gave me transferable skills.
I myself bounced from dreadful relationship to dreadful relationship right from my early teens, and it took me half a lifetime to figure out how this was supposed to go.
In no other therapeutic context is it more crucial that the Personhood and Beingness of the therapist can provide a ‘holding’ space for the tricky couple dynamic so I’m delighted to have the chance to inspire others to find that place in themselves.
I’m not about the academics. People can read and research for themselves. I’m about the How of Process and the skills ‘in the room’. I won’t be offering further reading, it’s not in my intended remit for this seminar.(February 2021) I’m more a follower of Yalom than Dryden."