“It takes courage to push yourself to places that you have never been before…to test your limits….to break through barriers. And the day came when the risk it took to remain tight inside the bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom” – Anais Nin –
If you’ve been considering therapy or coaching for some time, and each time you explore the possibilities something holds you back, perhaps you could explore what is holding you back in a trial session.
Finding a therapist
It takes courage to take new steps in your life and it can be helpful to have some support during this process.
Finding a therapist or counselor you feel a connection with is important. I offer an hour long, trial session so you can get an idea of who I am and what Gestalt Therapy is. During the last 10-15 minutes you can tell me how you experienced the session and I can tell you if I think Gestalt Therapy is suited to your wishes and needs. If we decide to continue together, there will be a second evaluation after 5 sessions to check if we’re still on the right track.
The Gestalt approach: existential, affirming, process oriented
Don’t push the river. It flows by itself. – Barry Stevens –
The Gestalt approach is existential, process oriented and is affirming of your right to exist; to be the agent of your own existence with all that you are. Awareness grows as you allow what wants to be seen and heard, a place in your life. Forcing change, forcing ourselves to be some way we are not, is often a reaction to unhappiness, uneasiness or simply inner or outer newness.
The paradoxical theory of change
“change occurs when one becomes what he is, not when he tries to become what he is not.” – Arnold Beisser –
Change can happen by being open to and curious about what is unfolding in the moment. Old situations needing closure may arise in the context of the present situation. This is called unfinished business in Gestalt Therapy. Slowing down, checking when it feels safe for you to continue or when you’ve had enough, are all important in becoming more attuned to your needs. In this way what the old unfinished situation has to do with the present situation, can often become clearer.
Exploring together what helps you when you feel overwhelmed, or on shaky ground is part of the process.
The right to exist…
Generally speaking, ideas and beliefs about ourselves are formed at a young age. You may find that you are reacting to yourself with criticism because of how you feel. How would it be if the way you are feeling, however difficult, however beautiful, has the right to exist just the way it is? If you have the right to exist, just the way you are?
When you’ve been brought up to believe, for example, that crying is an expression of weakness or that expressing anger is not done, sadness and anger can feel uneasy or even overwhelming when they arise. Other examples of affective trauma are: frequently being ignored, or laughed at, or being teased about how you look, feel or think.
When we are unable to allow a certain emotion, we also miss the energy it can give us. The energy of anger, for instance, is necessary for saying “no” when our boundaries are exceeded. There are many other examples.
When you have undergone pain and trauma at a young age, going through times of feeling unable to deal with life is very common. You may even have internal family voices during these periods telling you “there’s nothing wrong with you!” or “don’t be such a baby”, “just get on with it”. By recognizing these voices, it is possible, with time and practise, to reclaim the power they deplete.
An act of love. Reclaiming what is already yours.
Opening up to different ways of being with yourself can be confrontational and difficult but beautiful and humorous too. Is it time for you to reclaim what is already yours?
I also offer the opportunity to use music or clay as ways to explore your experience. These can often help us to find language that fits our experience.
You are a unique human being. Welcome!
Making an appointment for therapy, counselling or coaching
For coaching we’ll work out a trajectory together and generally work on something specific. This can mean parking some things that arise to stay focussed on the goal but can also follow a more organic path, if this is more suited to you.
If you’re not sure if the Gestalt approach is the right one for you, make an appointment and try it out. Should you decide to continue, you will be charged for this first session as it will be the start of the therapeutic or coaching journey. At the end of this session we will plan how to proceed. There will be no extra charge for this. There will be no charge for this session if you decide this approach is not for you.
Some of the areas I work with as a coach and therapist:
- choice of study or work
- following your passion
- (work related) stress and burnout
- low self-confidence
- ante- and postnatal anxiety or depression
- seasonal adjustment disorder
- childhood trauma
- grief and loss
- relationships (intimate, family, work)
- during and after pregnancy; individual and groups
I work with adolescents, in the above areas, as well as adults.