Psychosynthesis therapy provides a safe and supportive atmosphere for the exploration of personal issues and concerns. It honours the client's developmental level and unique ways of working. The process begins with what is foreground in the person's life and moves the client in the direction of the fullest expression of his or her own potential. The concerns and issues dealt with include:
Personal, interpersonal, or family conflict and alienation.
Death, dying, or unresolved grief over the loss of a loved one.
Professional burnout and/or exploring a change of career.
Recognition of addictive/co-dependent behaviour patterns.
Abuse, abandonment, or incest in childhood or adolescence.
Somatic concerns - physical illness, chronic pain, or health care.
Difficulty in making choices or in achieving certain goals.
Unfulfilled spiritual longing or a sense of duality between the psychological and spiritual aspects of life.
A need to find deeper meaning in one's life, or a sense that "something is missing."
Since the process of psychosynthesis is unique to each individual, the work may involve one in a variety of different activities. These could include development and use of the will; integration of the physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, and social aspects of life; learning to dis-identify from self-limiting identifications, concepts, and roles; exploration of values, meaning, and purpose; and unblocking obstacles to creative expression. The work itself draws from a diverse range of techniques and methods, depending on what is natural and most appropriate for each person. Within the psychosynthesis framework, practitioners utilise guided imagery, hypnotherapy, gestalt, movement, assertive training, family systems work, breath-work, art therapy, journal writing, and meditation, among other techniques.
During the psychosynthesis process, each person is encouraged to seek guidance increasingly from within him or herself, and taught how to proceed independently, safely, and effectively without the assistance of the psychosynthesis guide. As the client's self becomes more and more a source of guidance, strength, purpose, joy, wisdom, and love, he or she becomes increasingly able to function in the world with these qualities: more serenely, spontaneously, and powerfully with integrity, dignity, and respect for others in a spirit of cooperation, understanding, and goodwill.
Psychosynthesis has been described as a psychology with a soul, and this is what distinguishes it from many other forms of counselling and psychotherapy. It was first formulated in 1910 by Dr. Roberto Assagioli, an Italian psychiatrist and contemporary of C.G. Jung. Initially working in the pathologically based analytic frameworks of the time, Assagioli found his own personal experience kept pointing him towards the more creative, compassionate, and altruistic experiences of being human. He began to integrate Western analytic 'depth' psychology and Eastern meditative 'height' psychology into a comprehensive approach to human growth and development.
Psychosynthesis takes as a basic premise that in everyone there is an evolutionary drive toward mature self-realisation. This is the context for all counselling or therapeutic work. The counselling process seeks to energise the client's inherent wisdom and autonomous sense of Self not only by asking, 'What's holding me back, what's blocking me, what's my experience of pain about?' but also, 'What's seeking to emerge, what way is my heart drawing me, how can I use my will effectively?' All usual presenting issues can be effectively addressed through psychosynthesis, and it is a particularly relevant approach where there are crises of meaning, existential issues, and spiritual emergencies.
Source: Institute of Psychosynthesis
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