This book is the first practical introduction to a skills-based Existential approach. Accessible for those without a philosophical background, it describes Existential practice in terms of a number of concrete and tangible skills, tasks, and interactions. It shows how to enable the client to become more reflective about life and better capable of taking responsibility for it.
Covers the theoretical background and history of Existential Therapy
Examines phenomenological practice - the center of Existential Therapy
Addresses the necessary characteristics of the therapist as a person
Discusses surviving as an existential psychotherapist
Explores qualities of good living
Looks at the process of therapy and the nature of change
Deals with misconceptions about the Existential approach
Always linking Existential principles with therapeutic practice, this book provides a much needed resource both for those at the beginning of their training and also for more experienced practitioners keen to expand their knowledge. Explaining the ideas of Existential philosophy concisely yet without oversimplification, the authors make the Existential approach accessible to all those who wish to find out what it has to offer.
THE FRAMEWORK OF EXISTENTIAL THERAPY
Theoretical Background and History
Introducing Existential Therapy
What do we mean by 'Philosophical'?
What do we mean by 'Existential'?
Some of the Major Existential Philosophers
The Philosophical Aims of Existential Therapy
Limits of Human Living: The Givens of Existence
Four Dimensions of Existence
An Existential View on Religion
Living in Time
Anxiety and the Givens of Existence
Living with Paradox
Paradoxes of Human Existence
The Mind and the Body
THE PERSON OF THE THERAPIST
Who are you?
The Use of Life Experience to Reflect on Life and its Meanings
Being-with: Reciprocity and Collaboration
The Personal and the Political
Capacity for Self-reliance and Individuality
Transparency and Wisdom
Who are you as a therapist?
Surviving as an Existential Psychotherapist
The Importance of Personal Therapy in your Training
How to use Supervision?
WORKING PHENOMENOLOGICALLY: THE CENTRE OF EXISTENTIAL THERAPY
Phenomenology: Assumptions, Biases, Blind spots and the Worldview
The Assumptions of Existential Therapy
Becoming Aware of Assumptions
Before the Session
During the Session
How do you spot your own biases and assumptions?
Verification and Interpretation
Getting a Wider Perspective on Life
DEVELOPING AN EXISTENTIAL ATTITUDE
Openness to Experience
Openness to Silence
Boundaries and Consistency
Mutuality and Dialogue
--- from the publisher