Key need 1 Learning how to creatively and effectively use oneself in the treatment process is an important component of most forms of therapy training. This level of self-awareness is, however, often neglected in research, despite the centrality of the researcher to their work.

Real-life research
Real-life research

This chapter outlines the characteristics of practice-based research. We look at the role research may play in our everyday life, with reference to overlaps and differences between ‘private’ and ‘public’ research.

  • Theory
  • Interpretation
  • Inductive and deductive reasoning
  • Therapeutic modalities
  • Countertransference, transference and projections
  • Congruence
  • Automatic thoughts

Research plays a significant role in therapy today. From being steeped in mystery, psychotherapy has become a profession characterised by transparency and accountability. One of my favourite books during my own training was The Analytic Experience by Neville Symington. In it, Symington (1986: 9) boldly stated that ‘it is as impossible to convey the sense of [psychotherapy] to another person, as it is to explain to an eight-year old child what it is like to be in love.’ These kinds of comments seem ...

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