This thoroughly revised edition of Gestalt Counselling introduces the fundamental concepts of Gestalt and systematically demonstrates how to apply and use these in practice. Taking a relational perspective, the expert authors explore how Gestalt can be used in a wide variety of ‘helping conversations’ from counseling, psychotherapy and coaching to mentoring, managing, consulting and guiding. After placing Gestalt in its current socio-political context, each chapter: Defines a major concept; Provides everyday examples and illustrative vignettes from a variety of settings to bring the theory to life and suggest how that concept may be usefully applied; Includes exercises for readers to practice themselves and with their clients
A ‘running case study’ featuring ongoing coaching work moves throughout the book, and boxed summaries, diagrams, checklists and sources of further reading make this the ideal text for use in training. The accessible, engaging writing style will appeal to undergraduates and graduates alike.
This book is essential reading for Gestalt-based Counseling & Psychotherapy graduate degrees, as well as for any course in the allied health professions where Gestalt is the foundation.
Chapter 8: Assessment and the Process of Change
Assessment and the Process of Change
Perls states: ‘As soon as the structure … is clear to the therapist, he should plan his course of action, but remain alert and elastic during the whole treatment’ (1992 ). Such a simple statement belies the difficulty faced by the Gestalt practitioner with her foundation of phenomenology, holism and respect for the individual. Perls’ description of ‘structure’ implies diagnosis, a contentious area for some Gestalt practitioners. A premature or rigidly held assessment will deaden our perception and stereotype the individual without acknowledging his uniqueness and fluidity. Consequently, many have chosen to ignore diagnosis altogether for fear of losing the quality of the here-and-now moment. However, diagnosis, as understood from its Greek roots meaning ...