Gestalt Therapy is not so much about having some issue that you plan to sort out, but rather just being present and allowing something to arise.
We chatted for a while, me trying to think of something to present as an issue, floundering a little although I was quite happy sitting there with nothing to do.
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I was reminded of a comedian I saw once who refused to conjure up a line, and simply waited for something to arise. It was quite painful sitting in ‘the gap’ with him. So I was sitting there in ‘the gap’, waiting for something to show up.
The therapist was great, very happy to sit with me in that space, not judging or looking for something to do, to show her ability. It is unusual having this kind of a session in the role I have, as it is rare for someone to have this kind of session without an issue or two to have a session about.
And there are all kinds of pressure on the session giver to prove something, to produce a rabbit out of the hat if necessary. It is easy with bodywork, as there is usually a formula to follow.
So we did really well just waiting, till my ‘goof’ appeared. Which it often does when I have some empty space, in itself unusual for me in the past months.
I really like to ‘goof off’, and find it is rare that I can. I saw some judgements that the goof was just helping me avoid some deep dark secret that I was obviously unwilling to face, but realised that was just a hangover from an old idea I have that there is something wrong with me.
So we had a lot of fun, pulling faces, being absurd, giggling, each of us trusting the space, enjoying our goofs!
I left feeling significantly more spacious inside, and more appreciative of my goof and ability it has to transform situations when I trust it. I have been around lots of therapists in my time, and felt that she knows what she is doing, and is very comfortable with her chosen medium.
Written by Mark O’Brien for the “Session of the Month’, Here & Now magazine 1999-2005
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