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About The Northern School of Psychodrama

Psychodrama and Action Methods

The word 'Psychodrama' is often used as a generic term when talking about the range of action methods that J L Moreno developed.

Action methods are used to enable past, present and future life events to be explored. Issues or problems and their possible solutions are enacted rather than just talked about. Psychodrama offers the opportunity to practise new roles safely, see oneself from outside, gain insight and change. There is a director, an action area and group members. The director supports groups to explore a new response to a past situation and an adequate response to a future one, group members participate in the drama as significant others and share how they personally relate to and can learn from the presenting issue at the end of the session.

Psychodrama can be used in a group or individually for therapy and personal growth. It can also be applied to family and couples therapy.

Psychodrama is practised and taught extensively through the world.

Psychodrama is for everyone and anyone who would like to experience the spontaneity and 'magic' of working with action methods. Whether your focus is personal, professional, therapy or trainingŠ.Š. If you're interested in the creative exploration of yourself, your relationships and your life using action as well as words, then you might value and enjoy the psychodramatic method and the personal liberations, self expression and insights that it elicits.

The Person Centred Approach

Peggy Natiello writes : Carl R. Rogers, Ph. D., renowned American psychologist, developed the theory of client-centered therapy. The wisdom of his ideas has been adopted all over the world and applied to diverse professional endeavors including organizational development, education, parenting, peace work, medicine, and administration. To accommodate the growing adaptations of his personality theory, Rogers introduced the term person-centered approach (PCA).

Rogers¹ belief about human development is grounded in the actualizing tendency, the basic hypothesis of the person-centered approach and perhaps the most radical concept in Rogers¹ theoretical system. It implies that, in a climate of certain carefully researched conditions, persons can be trusted to move toward psychological health and enhancement without the expertise of another being imposed from the outside. That unwavering faith in each person¹s ability to grow and develop positively in the climate of genuineness, empathy and unconditional positive regard helps build personal power, self-acceptance, self-awareness, and self-trust.¹ ŒRogers describes six conditions integral to the therapeutic process. If these conditions exist, then a therapeutic process will transpire. The conditions are as follows:

1. Two persons are in contact.

2. The first person, who we shall term the client, is in a state of incongruence, being vulnerable or anxious

3. The second person whom we shall term the therapist is congruent in the relationship.

4. The therapist is experiencing unconditional positive regard towards the client.

5. The therapist is experiencing an empathic understanding of the client¹s internal frame of reference.

6. The client perceives at least to a minimal degree, conditions 4 and 5, the unconditional positive regard of the therapist for him, and the empathic understanding of the therapist.

As described by Rogers then, the three attitudes or conditions that a person-centred therapist need to provide for the client are congruence, empathy and unconditional positive regard. Indeed they are best viewed as a trinity ­ inseperable, essential and mutually interdependent.¹

Useful Reading

On Becoming a Person Carl Rogers (1961) Constable & Co

A Way of Being Carl Rogers (1980) Routledge

An Invitation to Client-Centred Psychology Tony Merry (1995) Whurr

The Person-Centred Approach: A Passionate Presence Peggy Natiello (2001) PCCS Books

Skills in Person-Centred Counselling and Psychotherapy Janet Tolan (2003) Sage