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Gestalt-EPSY 6325

UH EPSY 6325 Arbona Summer 2013

Gestalt Concepts 1. Existential and phenomenological (grounded in the here-and-now) 2. Initial goals is for clients to gain AWARENESS of what they are experiencing and doing NOW. 3. Promotes DIRECT EXPERIENCING rather than the abstractness of talking about situations
The Now 1. Our power is in the present: a) nothing exists except the now, and b) the past is gone and the future has not yet arrived.
The Now 2. The power of the present is lost if: a) we focus on past mistakes or engage in endless resolutions and plans for the future, and b)therapist focuses more on the process of therapy than on the content
Unfinished Business Unexpressed feelings such as anger, resentment, and fear that are: a) not fully experienced in awareness; b) interfere with effective contact with oneself and with others
Unfinished Business Results (symptoms) Preoccupation, compulsive behavior, wariness oppressive energy, and self-defeating behavior
Symptoms According to Gestalt, usually a product of unfinished business
Contact 1. to interact with the environment without losing one's individuality. 2. Requires awareness, energy, and ability to express oneself
Resistance to Contact 1)Defenses that prevent experiencing the present fully. 2)Typically out of awareness. 3)May contribute to dysfunctional behavior. 4) five major channels of resistance to attempt to control the environment rather than allowing real contact
Introjection Uncritical acceptance of others' beliefs and standards without making them our own. Lack of clear sense of self
Projection To disown certain aspects of ourselves by ascribing them to the environment. Victim stance; powerlessness to initiate change
Retroflection To turn back to ourselves something we would like to do (or have done) to someone else. Self-injury vs fear of directing aggression outwardly. Depression; psychosomatic symptoms
Deflection To avoid real contact and awareness by being vague and indirect. Chaninging the subject. Humor, abstract generalizations, ignoring
Confluence To lose the sense of the boundary between self and environment (others). Go with the flow, enmeshment
Goal of Gestalt Therapy 1)Gain awareness: a) know the environment, b) know oneself, and c) learn about dominant ways of avoiding contact. 2) Accept oneself and responsibility for self. 3) Allow oneself to make contact
Therapist Role 1)Provide an authentic relationship. 2)Focus on process vs content. 3) Devise experiments to increase client's self-awareness. 4)Coaches clients to arrive at their own interpretations. 5) Confrontation
Confrontation Intervention to help clients become aware of discrepancies between verbal and nonverbal expressions, feelings and actions, and/or thoughts and feelings
Gestalt Experiments 1)Allow clients to express themselves behaviorally. 2) Lead to fresh emotional experiences and new insights. 3) Facilitate experiencing in the moment, rather than talking about
Gestalt experiments 1)Internal Dialogue 2) Making the rounds 3)Reversal exercise 4) the rehearsal exercise 5) exaggerating exercise 6)staying with the feeling 7) empty chair
Internal Dialogue Make the dialogue between the client's two contradictory parts of the self external and make the parts talk to each other.
Making the rounds Going around in the group to each member and saying something or exhibiting a behavior
Reversal exercise Playing the opposite role of who you usually are.
The rehearsal exercise Rehearse behavior out loud. Helps deal with obsessive behavior and reveals fears
Exaggerating exercise exaggerate nonverbal behaviors and connect them to the feelings by trying to describe the behavior in terms of the feelings
Staying with the feeling Stay with the feeling to connect with a deeper awareness
Empty chair Using the chair to talk through the internal dialogue or relationship with someone
Internal Dialogue Ruth talks through her thoughts out loud. She explains the advantages and disadvantages to staying in therapy.
Making the rounds Bob goes around the group and tells each member why he doesn't trust them.
Reversal exercise Betty is always smiling and tries to appear happy. In therapy, the therapist asks Betty to act angry during part of the session.
The rehearsal exercise Fred is obsessing about the appropriate way to tell his girlfriend about his feelings for fear of being rejected. In the therapy session, Fred rehearses the scenario with the therapist.
Exaggerating exercise Greg is shaking his leg in a therapy session. The therapist ask Greg to shake his leg as intense as he can and describe the feeling behind it.
Staying with the feeling Sally is angry but this is a very unpleasant feeling for her so she tries to avoid this feeling by changing topics in the therapy session. The therapist urges Sally to stay with the anger and explore it deeper.
Empty chair John has relationship issues with his mother. In therapy John uses an empty chair to talk through these issues he has with his mother.
Introjection "Thin is beautiful"
Projection Someone who had a bad day and is angry with themselves, may shift blame to another, or project there anger onto someone or something else.
Retroflection Dan wants to strangle Stan so Dan chokes himself. Rob wants to give Sue a box of chocolates but he is afraid Sue will reject him so he eats them himself.
Deflection Ed:"We used to have a handyman named Salvador. He was a neat guy." Bob:"I'd like to take a trip to San Salvador one of these days. There are lots of interesting places in Central America." Ed:"I went to Europe last summer. The food there was great."
Confluence the unconsciously loss of self into surroundings, such as in mob mentality (peer pressure). Examples include: Occupy Wall Street, Looting after natural disasters, riots.
Contributions Creative use of active experiments and activities to help clients achieve experiential learning.
Limitations 1)confrontational style that deemphasizes cognitive factors. 2)Experiments can be used by therapist in a manipulative way. 3) Highly active and directive stance of therapist may lead to abuse of power
Created by: bseal023