Pre-Conference Workshops

Wednesday, September 21st, 2016

For a long while the AAGT conferences have also invited participants to enjoy pre-conference workshops. It seemed only natural to extend the few days conference into ‘more’: what is more relevant than a workshop of experienced professionals to a bunch of professionals/colleagues?

The idea evolved from AAGT as a learning community, ‘listening’ to the effort it takes to come to a conference, so wishing to offer opportunities for conference participants to take part in more extended experiences of meeting, exploration of themes, encounter, and engagement. Whether an AAGT member or not, this supports the community development of the conference. We also support participants’ professional development with the additional CEUs that can be obtained.

Participants of pre-conference workshops speak of how they met and had the time to develop close relationships with others, of how valuable the workshops experiences were in themselves, and in forming a basis for their engagement with the conference. Our experience is that people end up feeling full and pleased.

This year the collaboration with the EAGT enriched the pull of potential participants and presenters. We have more available to more potential participants. We have a rich, varied and exciting programme of workshops this year all carefully assessed by a blind peer-review process

Pre-conference workshops take place on Wed 21st September. Both half and full day workshops are available. Register as an individual or as part of a group of colleagues for an opportunity to experience experienced facilitators in a safe environment To find out more and to register, click on the link. Registration will close on 29th April – or sooner if workshops are full.

Schedule

Abstracts and Bios

MORNING 9.00 – 13.00

Gestalt mindfulness: A meditation movement practice for our daily life in a desensitized world

Lalei Gutierrez & Rosanna Zavarella

In this introductory workshop, you will be introduced to Gestalt mindfulness as a movement meditation practice, developed to support Gestalt practitioner’s self‑care, self‑support, and energetic access to “self‑as‑instrument” presence skills, in a desensitized relational field. Skills from Chi Kung, energy psychology, yoga therapy and meditation practices have been adapted and integrated with Gestalt methodology. Mindfulness, neuroscience, empathic attunement and resonance studies, have shown that increased sensitivity and awareness occurs in the energetic, relational field, which impacts and supports us with cultural differences. We will experience a sampling of the Gestalt mindfulness movement meditation practice in group and in dyads. We will discuss its here‑and now impact on presence, empathy, and connection in a desensitized field.

Suitable for participants of advanced level experience

Language of presentation: English

Presenters

Dr Lalei Gutierrez has been a holistic psychologist in private practice for over 30 years, her Gestalt practice involves individual, couples and family therapy, body/energetic process, diversity consulting, growth and learning group process facilitation, life‑relationship‑professional coaching and supervision. She is a Board Certified Coach, a Board Certified Polarity Practitioner, an author, educator, workshop leader and speaker. Her expertise involves an integration of Gestalt principles with eastern practices. She is a senior professional faculty member at the Gestalt Institute of Cleveland and clinical faculty member at Cleveland State University in the Diversity Management and Global Leadership Development Institute, Department of Psychology.

Rosanna Zavarella, PhD, BCC is a Holistic Psychologist in private practice for thirty years working with individuals, couples and groups. Her integrative approaches of body‑mind and spirit, including Energy Medicine, Energy Psychology, shamanistic practices, yoga therapy and spirituality provide the skills and support to her psychotherapy practice. A long-time student of Eastern philosophy and the Bon Po Buddhist Shamanistic traditions, she specializes in women’s spirituality, women’s self-development groups, life transitions and trauma work. She is certified in both hypnotherapy and EMDR and is board certified as life/career/relationship Coach. She is also a professional faculty member at the Gestalt Institute of Cleveland.

An exploration of otherness

Di Hodgson

This workshop will create a space for an exploration and inquiry into the experience of “otherness”. We will consider the impact of living a lifetime of “otherness” in relation to the dominant culture. We will consider the personal and professional implications on our ways of being in the world and how this may impact our roles as psychotherapists and supervisors. We will explore the experience through several Gestalt lenses.

Suitable for participants of all levels of experience

Language of presentation: English

Presenter

Dr Di Hodgson is a psychotherapist, supervisor and trainer. She is the programme leader and head of Gestalt at the Metanoia institute UK. She is a regular facilitator of national and international workshops. For 4 years Di was a member and Chair of the UKCP diversity, equality and social responsibility committee. She is also an organisational consultant and executive coach who works primarily with leaders in higher education, the law and regulatory bodies. She is the diversity consultant for one of the main healthcare regulators in the UK.

History and culture live through us

Lynne Jacobs

Through experimenting with polarities and enduring relational themes, we will unpack various contextual influences such as gender, ethnicity, religion, time and place in history, etc., to get an in vivo sense of how history and culture live through us.

Suitable for participants of advanced level experience

Language of presentation: English

Presenter

Lynne Jacobs, Ph.D., is co‑founder of the Pacific Gestalt Institute, and a Training and Supervising Analyst at the Institute of Contemporary Psychoanalysis. She is particularly interested in relational processes in therapy, has authored numerous articles, and co‑authored /co‑edited (with Rich Hycner), two books. She teaches and trains nationally and internationally.

Between you and me: Relational movement play as a practice of presence

Emilyn Claid

This movement‑based workshop focuses on embodied presence and intersubjective relational affect. Structured through a series of clearly framed tasks, content draws from somatic bodywork, phenomenological encounter and movement play interweaving with discussion. Working with mind body processes that focus on internal and external sensing, participants respond to how they are affected at encounters with each other, opening a relational exchange in movement. Movement practice evokes theory and parallels are made with Gestalt therapeutic maps, self and environmental support, moderations to contact and cycle of experience. Participants are encouraged to be with the dialogic uncertainties that emerge, as a source for creative potential in therapy. The workshop offers a playful movement experience relevant to the conference theme to nurture respect for the aesthetics of otherness.

Suitable for participants of advanced level experience

Language of presentation: English

Presenter

Emilyn is a professor of choreographic practices at Roehampton University (London) and a Gestalt psychotherapist. Throughout the 1970s & 80s she was at the forefront of the UK experimental dance scene. In the 1990s she worked as an independent dance artist and in 1997 was awarded a PhD and published Yes? No! Maybe… Seductive Ambiguity in Dance Theatre Performance (Routledge 2006). She directed Choreography courses at Dartington College of Arts (2003‑13) while training as a psychotherapist. Emilyn has a private psychotherapy practice in London and her internationally presented, practice led research projects interweave between the two fields. Emilyn has an MA Performing Arts, PhD Dance, and MSc Gestalt Psychotherapy

The crack between the worlds: Gestalt and shamanism and the doors of perception

Jay Tropianskaia

The aesthetics of contemporary Gestalt therapy lies in the exquisitely subtle awareness of forms of contact in the negotiated approach within a space and a context. In our curiosity to experience the field as it reflects and is reflected in this process, shamanism opens another door to “otherness” through what it refers to as a “sixth sense.” The shift in Gestalt focus from foreground to background has opened the door to the contributions of Shamanism training practitioners to include within our perception of the obvious, the more subtle “not so obvious’. This workshop is an exploration of broader space between, referred to in shamanism as “the crack between the worlds” and to introduce shamanic intervention as a way to see the Gestalt therapist as shaman.

Suitable for participants of advanced level experience

Language of presentation: English

Presenter

Jay Tropianskaia is Director of Training, Senior Faculty, Gestalt Institute of Toronto. She has been working at the growing edge of Gestalt since 1992. The recognition of the Five Year Training Program by the Ontario College of Registered Psychotherapists is largely attributable to Jay’s codification of the entire five year curriculum and mapping of competencies throughout the program. Jay also creates programs as varied as Gestalt and Shamanism, Approach to Addictions, Anger Management, and The Art of Relationship. Jay graduated from the Gestalt Institute of Toronto and is a registered psychotherapist in private practice in Toronto for the past 24 years.

AFTERNOON: 14.30 – 18.30

MASKS: distant relationships deconstruction and reconstruction of new masks for a more sensitive compared with each other.

Ms Sandra Salomao Carvalho

The work shows an applicable technique for individual, family, group psychotherapy. Through the metaphor of the masks we seek a significant explaining of the therapeutic work: syncretism, unit, synthesis, art, touch and movement. The depth or the substance of the therapeutic process achieved through the irreverent, the artistic, playful large groups. One of the goals is to provide an emotional work by interregula ção. It is a technique applicable to individual, family, group psychotherapy and for large groups. It demonstrates how complex and fixed, personal and family group content may be modified through a semi-directed work, interact with group or family.

Suitable for participants of advanced level experience

Language of presentation: English or Italian

Presenter

Sandra Salomao Carvalho has been a clinical psychologist for 35 years, has a Master’s degree in social psychology, is professor and supervisor of Gestalt therapy in Pontifical Catholic University, Rio. Her training includes: Training Center of Gestalt Therapy / San Diego ‑ USA, Systemic Family Therapy by the Research Center, RJ, Couple and intimate Systems with Zinker Joseph. She is creator of the Model Gestalt Systemic Relational Intervention. Founder of Gestalt Therapy Center,

Brazil and coordinates training courses, supervision and family therapy.

Belonging, “Otherness” and Mutual CoCreation: An ArtInfused Experience of Erving Polster’s Life Focus Community and How You Can Develop One

Dr Marilyn Lammert and Dr Caroline Paltin

The Life Focus Community developed by Erving Polster creates common ground to explore our lives, amplifying self‑other contact, and Intersubjective meanings. With art‑infused conversation, music, poetry and more, these on‑going gatherings explore co‑creation of meaning in deep listening and experiential activities. Moving beyond confines of therapy, Life Focus Groups spark awareness of contact, freshly amplifying the experience of otherness, commonality, and richness of the lived life. Attendees will experientially explore the concept envisioned by Polster, with Caroline Paltin, who has worked closely with Polster in development of an ongoing Community. The primary activity will be a live demonstration of Life Focus with music on the theme of Belonging and Otherness and an experiential led by Marilyn Lammert exploring utilization of Life Focus in our lives.

Suitable for participants of all levels of experience

Presentation language: English

Presenters

Dr Marilyn Lammert MSW ScD LCSW-C

Marilyn Lammert, MSW, ScD, LCSW‑C lives in Bala Cynwyd, PA with her husband, Paul Carlson, a non‑therapist who enjoys AAGT events. Early in her career, she was very fortunate to have trained with Erv and Miriam Polster and is a 1978 graduate of their training program. For 36 years, she was a Gestalt therapist, supervisor, and trainer in the Washington DC area where there are few Gestalt therapists. Marilyn recently moved to Philadelphia and appreciates having nearby Gestalt colleagues. She loves AAGT conferences.

Dr Caroline Paltin  PhD

Caroline Paltin, a Licensed Psychologist, has practiced Gestalt Therapy infused with music and arts in Orange California and Hawai’i for over 25 years. With Master Gestalt Trainer Erving Polster, she co‑created the on‑going Mindful Life Focus Community, presenting with Polster on the subject at several workshops, including an all‑day featured event at the 2013 Psychotherapy Networker Conference. Assistant Professor of Psychology at National University Costa Mesa, instructing in Trauma, Clinical and Group therapies, she is conducting grant funded research of Life Focus work with trauma. She enjoys bringing her love of music arts and poetry to all that she does.

The many faces of gestalt therapy: Is there a boundary of what is and what is not gestalt therapy?

Robert Resnick

A brief presentation of the defining fundamentals of Gestalt Therapy within which various and different emphases and organization of this model are possible – flexibly bounded by Gestalt Therapy’s world view and view of human nature. This will be followed by my own ever evolving model of Gestalt Therapy synthesized and distilled over 50 years of being a Gestalt Therapist. This is an (not the) integrative and integrating model among many different and “valid” models of Gestalt Therapy. For most of this workshop, volunteer participants will then work live with the presenter with each session being related to the theory – hopefully enriching both. Comments, questions, discussion and other points of view are welcomed and encouraged

Suitable for participants of advanced level experience

Language of presentation: English

Presenter

Robert W. Resnick, Ph.D., a Clinical Psychologist, Gestalt/Couples Therapy trainer for almost 50 years ‑ trained and certified (1969) with Fritz Perls and Jim Simkin and chosen by Perls to introduce Gestalt Therapy to Europe summer 1969. His interview “Gestalt Therapy: Principles Prisms and Perspectives” British Gestalt Journal, 1994. “The Recursive Loop of Shame”, Gestalt Review 1997. “Chicken Soup Is Poison” (Perls Festschrift) circa 1967. Currently developing and distributing contemporary Couples Therapy and Individual Gestalt Therapy theory and demonstration films for graduate psychotherapy programs worldwide in a dozen languages. His first clinical practicum was driving a New York taxicab.

The Clinical Applications of Mindfulness Meditation, Somatics and Gestalt Therapy for Fostering Resiliency, Creativity and Trauma Resolution

Dr Ronald Alexander

As psychotherapy has become more diverse there is a growing interest in an evolving aesthetic that focuses on senses through somatic and mindfulness practices. This progressive model of Gestalt therapy incorporates the importance of attention and awareness to emerging subjectivity between self and other. It is a new view that weaves a mutual co‑creation in treating the whole person. This model uses a comprehensive methodology for integrating a wide range of interventions into a style that suits each individual client and the unique personality of the evolving therapist. Gestalt therapy, with its holistic view and dialectic reasoning, allows us to experiment with, discriminate between, and assimilate ideas that brings new beauty to a world struggling with suffering and enriches our ever‑changing approach to modernize psychotherapy.

Suitable for those with advanced level experience

Language of presentation: English

Presenter

Ronald Alexander, Ph.D. is a psychotherapist, leadership coach, international clinical trainer, and the Executive Director of the OpenMind Training® Institute in Santa Monica. He leads clinical training programs in Gestalt, Ericksonain and Somatic‑Mindfulness based trainings in U.S., Japan, Europe, and Russia. He was certified at the Gestalt Therapy Institute of Los Angeles and studied extensively with Erving and Miriam Polster, Robert Resnick Ph.D., Jim Simkin Ph.D. and Robert Martin D.S.W. He is the author of, Wise Mind, Open Mind. His unique method combines mindfulness with mind‑body somatic therapies into an integrated program that supports clinical excellence and growth. www.ronaldalexander.com

Meetingthe‑other‑meeting‑me presence and otherness: Deepening relational practice and theory

Rich Hycner

The workshop will include: group experiences, discussion, and individual therapy demonstrations, focusing us on the difficulty of fluidly moving between the “otherness” of the client, the therapist’s self‑experience, and the developmental level of the therapeutic relationship. We need a radically deepened aesthetic, practice, and theory, regarding the relational, such that so‑called “otherness” is pre-reflectively experienced, and consciously understood, as our connectedness‑between, and inextricably a part of who we are. Our unending challenge as practitioners is to clinically and artistically integrate these dimensions within the wholeness of the“betweeness‑of‑self‑with‑other‑and‑other‑with‑self”—both in therapy, but also modelling for the client’s life. The workshop will emphasize the necessity of a fluid oscillation between and among these dimensions, to highlight potential healing connections. Presence and artistic discernment are our never‑ending difficulties.

Suitable for participants with advanced level experience

Language of presentation: English

Presenter

Rich Hycner finds the therapeutic relationship to be the nexus for healing and an endless source of exploration. He views the therapist’s presence to the client, the relationship, and to self, as the medium for exploring the relational and experiential dimensions of healing. He is author of Between Person and Person: Toward a Dialogical Psychotherapy; and co‑author with Lynne Jacobs of The Healing Relationship: A Dialogic/Self Psychology Approach; and co‑editor with Lynne Jacobs of; Relational Approaches in Gestalt Therapy. He has conducted Gestalt relational therapy training workshops in Brazil, Canada, England, Ireland, Mexico, Norway, Scotland, Wales, and the United States.

ALL DAY WORKSHOPS: 9.00 to 18.30

Stop managing your emotions and start processing them

Bea MacKay

In our modern world people are often so disconnected from themselves they have stopped processing their emotions and are focused on managing them. This makes it more difficult for them to connect with others. This workshop helps participants help clients recover from unhealed trauma by guiding them through the processing of their emotions using psycho‑education, awareness and practice. It teaches the physiology of emotion, synthesis of logical/analytical thinking with sensations of experience, and the importance of the breath. Through lecturettes, working in dyads and demonstration, participants will gain knowledge and experience in guiding clients to make this important change. There will be plenty of time for debriefing and questions.

Suitable for participants of advanced level experience

Language of presentation: English

Presenter

Bea Mackay, PhD is registered psychologist in private practice in Vancouver, Canada working with individuals, couples and families. She offers workshops in Canada and internationally. She is a senior trainer with Gestalt Vancouver and has published a manual on Two‑Chair technique titled Two- Two‑You Work: How to work with the self in conflict.

The well resourced therapist

Miriam Taylor

This workshop attends to the relational field of trauma and comes to the heart of trauma therapy. Working with traumatised clients can be destabilising even for experienced therapists. Two clinical examples provide the ground for consideration of the impact of trauma on the therapist and on the wider field, mirroring the phenomenology of the client. Theoretical input from Sensorimotor Therapy, neuroscience and contemporary trauma theory become the springboard for participants to explore their own relationship to trauma, their vulnerability to being distressed by the work, and to the co‑creation of the traumatised relational field. Discussion and an experiential focus will be maintained throughout, with particular emphasis on developing an increased somatic base for support.

Suitable for participants of all levels of experience

Language of presentation: English

Presenter

Miriam Taylor is a UKCP registered Gestalt therapist, supervisor and international trainer. She trained first as a counsellor and later in psychotherapy. She has taught adults for over thirty years, including as trainer and current examiner at Metanoia Institute. Miriam was clinical coordinator of a young peoples counselling service, which pointed her towards concentrating on trauma, becoming a consultant therapist for a specialist trauma service. Her main interest is in the relational embodied integration of trauma. She is author of ‘Trauma Therapy and Clinical Practice: Neuroscience, Gestalt and the Body’, 2014, and is an Associate of Relational Change.

Encountering the other: Personal growth and group process workshop

Cathy Gray & Marlene Blumenthal

Encountering the other can be an anxiety filled experience. When we enter a large group in which we are acquainted with only a few people we tend to cling to those we know and limit our encounter with people whom we do not yet know. We limit our experience and narrow the possibilities for growth through engagement with those who are new and/or different from us. In this experiential workshop we will engage in conversation and experiments designed to support our risking to know and to be known by the other. We will address embodied practices of support and contact, building trust through consciously titrating the exposure of vulnerabilities, diminishing projections through intentional conversation, building support for spontaneity and excitement.

Suitable for participants of all levels of experience

Language of presentation: English

Presenters

Cathy is a LCSW psychotherapist in private practice. She trained at the Gestalt Therapy Institute of Philadelphia (GTIP). She works with individuals, couples, and groups and provides supervision, in person and on Skype. Cathy is on the GTIP faculty, is chairperson of its board of directors, and past president of AAGT. In addition to Gestalt Therapy Theory, her work is informed by Focusing, improvisational movement, EMDR, Mind‑Body Centring, Developmental Somatic Psychology and life. Cathy teaches nationally and internationally. She also writes, co-authoring an article with Philip Lichtenberg. However, most of her writing remains in her desk drawer.

Marlene Moss Blumenthal, PhD, trained as a clinical psychologist and has worked with children and adolescents, their families, and their teachers in day treatment, residential, and school settings, both individually and in groups. She sees adults and families in her private practice. She is a former director of clinical training at the Gestalt Institute of Cleveland (GIC), participated in developing and co‑chairs the advanced training program for working with children and adolescents, and teaches in the advanced program for psychotherapists. She has published research on mother/adolescent daughter relationships, conflict modes and gestalt resistances and authored articles published on these topics.

“I” is an other

Ruella Frank & Jean-Marie Robine

When the French poet Arthur Rimbaud wrote (1871) this paradoxical phrase « I is an other », he was mostly referring to the aesthetic context in which an artist is not the master of the art expressed through him. Rimbaud can be considered a precursor to the contemporary challenge of the classical conception of self‑possessed subject in possession of and master of itself. « I » is meaningless without the other. We will explore how kinaesthetic resonance ‑‑the relational feel of our relationality‑‑ forms postural attitudes – our readiness to relate. And likewise, how our ever‑shifting postural attitudes bring forward a kinetic‑kinaesthetic vibrating. This animated process implies the always reconstructing of the moving situation: the other’s intentionality inhabiting my body and my intentionality inhabiting his/her body.

Suitable for participants of advanced level experience

Language of presentation: English and French

Presenters

Ruella Frank, Ph.D., is founder and director of the Centre for Somatic Studies, on the faculty at Gestalt Associates for Psychotherapy and full member of the New York Institute for Gestalt Therapy. She teaches workshops internationally. She has authored articles and chapters in various publications, as well as the book Body of Awareness: A Somatic and Developmental Approach to Psychotherapy, (2001, Gestalt Press, available in 4 languages) and co‑authored The First Year and the Rest of Your Life: Movement, Development and Psychotherapeutic Change (2010, Routledge Press, available in 3 languages). Her training video Introduction to Developmental Somatic Psychotherapy, now subtitled in French and Russian, is available at www.somaticstudies.com,

Jean‑Marie Robine, funder and past director of Institut Français de Gestalt Thérapie, co‑founder and past president of European Association for Gestalt Therapy, full member of New York Institute for Gestalt Therapy. Jean‑Marie was a student of Isadore From, among the founders of Gestalt Therapy. He is an international trainer, author of many articles and of 7 books about Gestalt Therapy, including On the Occasion of an Other (Gestalt Press) and Social Change Begins with Two (7 languages). He is currently preparing a book about « self » with 20 international major theoreticians of Gestalt Therapy published in 4 languages (English, Spanish, French, Russian).