I trained as a psychotherapist in the early nineties, with Nick Totton and Em Edmondson, and have continued to develop my approach through training and experience since that time.
For over fifteen years I have worked in private practice, and have been employed for some years as a therapist in schools, working with troubled children.
I run workshops and training for psychotherapists, counsellors and other practitioners.
I run advanced trainings for practitioners in Embodied-Relational and Wild Therapy.
The work I offer is relational body psychotherapy, from the specific tradition of Embodied-Relational Therapy.
One difference you might notice from some approaches is that whilst offering solid containment and safety for you and your emotional process, we can also work in a wide variety of channels, including, for example:
-Listening to you sharing your experience
-Simply paying attention together to your breathing, or your posture
-Experimenting with different ways of you coming through the door, or sitting in different chairs, or working standing up or lying down, or working outdoors
-Exploring what happens if we take on different roles
-Working with loud or quiet expression, with gesture, movement, and physical contact
-Specifically exploring what happens between us in the room, as a way of making sense of what happens in your life
-Working indoors or outdoors, and taking the world around us seriously as a teacher and fellow therapist
All of this depends on developing enough trust and good communication for us to find what feels best for you.
I am a member of the Embodied-Relational Therapy (ERT) Association, and the Ashburton peer supervision group.
I also work in the Embodied-Relational Therapy trainers group, and have been a member of the Human Symphony (Pakistan) training team. I offer supervision to counsellors and psychotherapists.
I live in Bovey Tracey, on the southern edge of Dartmoor, with Louise, my partner.
My very first experience of therapeutic work was as a volunteer with Nightline – a student service based on the Samaritans, going on to help lead and develop the branch and the trainings. Although this was a voluntary rather than professional training, I have often reflected since, that this initial grounding in a person-centred approach has stood me in good stead over the years.
The solid core of my work is Embodied-Relational Therapy, in which I trained with Nick Totton and Em Edmondson in the early 90’s, back when it was called Selfheal Psychotherapy. I have since undertaken two further week long courses with them in working with character, and creative and expressive therapy, undertaken the advanced year of the ERT training, the wild therapy training, and am now a member of the training team. Other training has included:
-One year therapeutic massage training
-a year’s training in Process Oriented Psychology with RS POP Ireland
-Postgraduate Certificate in Education, leading to Qualified Teacher Status (QTS)
-One year training in Shamanic Healing
-Various training and experience in education for young people with learning disabilities, including working with autism, child protection, intensive interaction, picture exchange communication system, Maketon sign language, first aid training, Team Teach, behavioural approaches to positive behaviour management,
-Numerous short courses, including Solution Focused Brief Therapy, Sand Tray Therapy, working with domestic violence and abuse, Safeguarding Children
-One year Foundation Training in Family Therapy, University of Plymouth with NHS Plymouth
-Certificate in Emotional Literacy for Children, accredited by the Institute for the Arts in Therapy and Education
-12 day training in Somatic Trauma Therapy with Babette Rothschild, author of ‘The Body Remembers’
-CSTD supervision training: Core Supervision, Therapeutic Supervision
-Hakomi residential 2019
-Attendance at conferences, including the European Association for Body Psychotherapy Congress in Cambridge, Taunton Association for Psychotherapy conferences, Ecopsychology Gathering UK, Independent Practitioners Network national gatherings
-Numerous workshops and short courses including Working with Trauma, SEAL (Social and Emotional Aspects of Learning), Trauma and the Body, Working with Erotic Charge, the Digestion with Kathrin Stauffer, Relational Body Psychotherapy with Asaf Rolef Ben-Shahar, Authentic Movement with Em Edmondson, Relational psychotherapy with Michael Soth, LGBT+ Cultural competence and confidence with Tina Hill-Art & David Humeniuk, Exploring Autism with Caroline Hearst.
Since 2019, I have been in Radix Practitioner training with Melissa Lindsay and Narelle McKenzie
In the last few years I’ve been passionately learning more about social justice, and about racism and anti-racist practice in particular, in relation to psychotherapy, including short workshops with Rae Johnson, Dr Isha McKenzie-Mavinga, Beverley J Weston-Daniel, attending a BAATN trainers forum, and longer work with Jonathan Kahn & Norah Lopez Holden, with Mamood Ahmad & Sam Jamal, with Sage M Stephanou, and with Charmaine McCauley.
I meet regularly with members of the PCSR Anti Racist Action Group’s discussion group, and as part of the ERT training team, meet regularly with Phil Bragman to address issues of diversity and marginalisation in the ERT training process.
Embodied-Relational Therapy (ERT) jargon and history!
ERT is a dynamic synthesis of body psychotherapy, psychodynamic psychotherapy and process approaches. It draws particularly on the work of Wilhelm Reich, Arnold and Amy Mindell, and Ron Kurtz. as an approach
The approach focuses on two facts about human beings: we are embodied and in relationship. To be alive we need to be a body, and to be alive we need to relate to others. Our greatest challenges and our greatest joys follow from these twin facts.
ERT was developed initially by Nick Totton and Em Edmondson, and continues to be developed by Nick Totton, Allison Priestman, Stephen Tame, Jayne Johnson, Kamalamani Palmer and other practitioners within the tradition.
It is a core frame which is structured to incorporate other therapeutic skills, experiences and training, in my case, for example: solution focused therapy, sand tray work, process oriented psychology, person-centred counselling, voice, movement, dance, massage, intensive interaction, somatic trauma work…
Find out more about ERT at www.erthworks.co.uk