Until I started my training, I’d never really heard of Psychosynthesis. ‘Psycho-what?’ people sometimes ask. It’s not the most common of therapies, not that easy to say even and yet, for me personally, colleagues I’ve trained with, and I sincerely believe, for clients I’ve worked with, it’s a gentle, soulful and powerful counselling and psychotherapy approach to both healing wounds and tapping into our innate potential to become all that we can be.
Created in the 20th Century by visionary Italian psychotherapist Roberto Assagioli, Psychosynthesis counselling and psychotherapy brings together powerful techniques for self-exploration and awareness, together with a wonderfully human view of the world.
At its heart, the Psychosynthesis counsellor and psychotherapist tries to bring together the disparate elements of ourselves, that can get fragmented and self-defeating over years of pain, anger, grief and disappointment, towards a unity, a more harmonious inner peace. That journey maybe one of a lifetime for many of us, but in the act of moving towards that unity, we can experience ourselves, our relationships and the world, with a greater depth and vibrancy. We can find ourselves dropping the masks that have helped us survive but prevent us from being real to ourselves. We can find ourselves relating more deeply and speaking more truly to those we are close to.
It helps us to realise that we not just our bodies that carry us, our feelings that enrich or pain us, our mind that helps interpret and think ourselves in life. We are of course all those and, in Psychosynthesis counselling, we are more than that too. The approach suggests (but doesn’t impose) that each of us has a deep innate wisdom, sometimes called a higher Self, which guides us. Some call it our deepest truth, the still part of us that really knows what we need to be at one with the world.
There are many ways of experiencing this deepest part of ourselves. Some people encounter it through spiritual practice and meditation. Others through the arts and creativity. And yet others through encounters with other beings and the natural world. In Psychosynthesis, the unique potential and beauty of each individual is to be celebrated, and nurtured as a most precious resource.
The other important aspect of Psychosynthesis counselling, which really differentiates it from other therapies, is our individual will. In other words, we have choice in this world. Our will is our capacity to exercise choice, through skill or determination or strength. And with will and choice, comes deep responsibility. When we accept we have will and choice, then we no longer can assume the victim’s position. Our choices, however difficult and painful, become our own to bear. It can be a powerful, humbling and sometimes terrifying experience.
The Psychosynthesis counsellor’s role in all this rich discovery is to act as companion and guide. We hold a mirror gently, help our clients to take the smallest steps needed, utterly respectful of their experience, their pain, the fragile nature of being in relationship with the counsellor. And we also hold on to, however deeply in pain they are, their potential to become all they can be. As a counsellor and psychotherapist, there is nothing more profound, humbling and moving than to be able to journey with my clients in this way.
If you’d like to find out more about Psychosynthesis counselling with me, Matt Fox in Totnes, Paignton and Newton Abbot, please do get in touch.
Other resources on Psychosynthesis:
Author: Matt Fox