The challenges of training in research and practice?

The challenges of training in research and practice? A cup of coffee with Nick Midgley Isabel: I was recently asked to deliver a talk about the challenges of training people to be both practitioners and researchers in counselling psychology, which I found an interesting question… So I thought I would ask about your experience ofContinue reading “The challenges of training in research and practice?”

How to fail your psychodynamic case report

In my current and previous course team roles, I’ve been responsible for courses that attempt to teach psychoanalytic theory to trainee counselling psychologists. The usual means of assessing this is the case report, where the trainee writes up a piece of work where they have attempted to intervene psychoanalytically, or sometimes, a piece of workContinue reading “How to fail your psychodynamic case report”

The Forgotten Bridge in process reports

Ah, the process report.  No one escapes counselling psychology training without turning out at least a couple, and quite right too, for the process report demonstrates oodles of developing competencies.  Make sure your knickers are clean, because this kind of assessment shows everything: whether you understand theory, whether you can apply it in practice, whetherContinue reading “The Forgotten Bridge in process reports”

Branding counselling psychologists!

Medics often brand themselves as illness specialists: we suffer because we’re ill; a bit of us is broken, we’ll fix that by cutting something off or adding a pill; if you’re lucky, you’ll be cured. I polarise, of course, and many medics such as Joanna Moncrieff and David Zigmond (see his blog post in theContinue reading “Branding counselling psychologists!”

Letting go of ‘letting go’

I was reading a book on the train this morning about Kleinian psychotherapy*. The book contains case studies by various Kleinian psychotherapists and in this particular case I was reading, one therapist wrote that her patient’s way of being ‘was not something he was about to give up’.   I frequently come across terms likeContinue reading “Letting go of ‘letting go’”

Mazes and labyrinths as archetypes of humanity

Originally posted on :: Culture Decanted :::
? ? Why are we still a-maze-d by labyrinths? With a diverse range of permutations, the Maze is a symbol that has been with humanity since the pre-historic era. So pervasive is the labyrinth within human symbolic communication, it is impossible to think of a human era where it was…

A meditation on free will and authority

Free will and authority are highly relevant and complex concepts in counselling psychology, but rarely discussed in any depth.  In my psychoanalytic training, one of the readings for a class before the summer break was ‘Before The Law’ by Kafka.  In essence, it’s about a man who comes to find the law, meets a gateContinue reading “A meditation on free will and authority”

Meetup group for Counselling and Psychotherapy students in London

  Did you know that there’s a group for Counselling and Psychotherapy students in London?   You can find details of the group at and follow them on Twitter @psycstudents!  

What’s your position in the transference?

In my own psychoanalytic training, this is a question that’s often been asked of me.  Psychoanalysts believe that transference is when the patient acts towards someone – often the therapist – as if they were a figure in the patient’s past.   So, when a patient feels unloved, criticised, intruded upon or neglected, we might askContinue reading “What’s your position in the transference?”