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Relationships

Fears my clients express about relationships.

Allowing people to matter to me is scary. If I let people matter then I am making myself vulnerable to the pain of loss. I tell myself the story that I am defended, that I can’t really love or care, that in some way I am deficient in loving. By telling this story of myself and believing it I think I can protect myself from loss. I can’t. It’s just a story. I do let people in and I do care, I just delude myself that I don’t. When loss looks like happening I withdraw in the hope that this will lessen the pain. It doesn’t. I have been busy creating a fantasy that doesn’t work.

The problem that this story creates is that by denying my love for others I unconsciously depend even more on their love for me. Somehow the story has made me dependent on them for my own sense of myself. I secretly believe that if I lose someone, if they stop giving me the kind of affirming attention that I have grown to depend on, that I will be reduced and that their leaving confirms my own hidden belief that I am not worthy.

I have now noticed that if I consciously allow myself to care and I accept that in caring I will probably be hurt when i lose them (as I must do in the end whatever happens in between) then I begin to set them free and love them for who they are. it seems that in trying to hold them at a distance. I am simultaneously expecting them to give me all the validation that i lack in myself. I imprison others with my demands that they reassure me that i am valuable and iprtant. when i allow myself to care for them this demand seems to evaportate. it is a strange thing i have discovered.

What is Gestalt Therapy

What is Gestalt Therapy?

When would you seek a Gestalt therapist?

When your self-regulatory abilities do not lead you beyond the maladaptive repetitive patterns that you developed originally as coping strategies in difficult circumstances. These strategies are now making you or people around you unhappy.

The only goal of Gestalt therapy is awareness. And then, awareness of awareness. Both awareness as content and awareness as process broaden and deepen as your therapy proceeds.

This type of therapy does not focus on fixing the problem. It focuses on an active relationship and active methods to help you gain the self-support necessary to solve problems. The therapist provides support through the therapeutic relationship and discovers with you how you block your awareness and functioning.

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Counselling in the community

When people ask me:” at what point shall I seek counseling?” I tell them: “if you feel like you are not as happy as you could be.” It really is that simple. All of us go through times in our lives when we encounter periods of stress causing us feelings of great discomfort. We can loose our support system in transitions such as relocation, parenthood, and general change in circumstances, accentuating feelings of loneliness and anxiety.

Another reason for seeking counseling is recognizing patterns of behaviors that are not working, such as relationships ending badly in the same sort of way. People often wait too long before they seek help. This may lead to depression and/or physical symptoms, which in turn may result in difficulties in our personal and professional relationships.

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Nicole Renaud

Nicole Renaud

English, French and German B.A. (USA), M.Couns & H.S.(Australia), PACFA Adv. Dip. Gestalt Therapie, GANZ

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