Process oriented psychology

The Professional Development People

Finding your Life Myth - working with childhood dreams and early memories

Presenter: Elizabeth (Lizzie) Spencer

Jung presented ways of working with an early childhood dream or nightmare.  Arny Mindell, who created Process Oriented Psychology (POP), shows how we can use this to find our Life Myth. Many people have a childhood nightmare or vivid early memories. These dreams and memories often occur at the phase where a child is being socialized by the world at large. The dreams often reveal the innocence a child feels and something very scary. POP teaches that dreams tend to move from a known identity to an unknown part, and that in between we see the way in which we overcome struggles and move into unfamiliar parts of ourselves.
The soul, inner life and imagination are highly valued by Jung and POP. We experience life in various ‘channels’ e.g. relationships, thinking and talking, visual, movement, sound, hearing, proprioceptive.. Each time we ‘switch channels’ a rush of new information can arise. In this technique we use various channels; thinking and talking, imagining, drawing and movement. We also use several levels of consciousness; the every-day, a looser movement and drawing state, and a deeper relaxed far away state. Each of these states brings new information.

We disavow and marginalise states that we are scared of or that we dislike e.g. anger, and we avow states we feel good about e.g. kindness. This process helps us to integrate powerful states that we may have disavowed.

Lizzie will explain all this in the workshop, using a few beautiful power points. She’ll prepare a handout with the exercise, and a handout with the core therapeutic concepts. The day will begin with foundational principles and concepts from POP, and with an exercise with our inner critic to bring them alive. We all love ways of overcoming our inner critics!

Participants will be supported to explore each aspect of their dream. By the end of the process, they will have a succinct sense of their innocent part. They will see how the scary or difficult part shows them a raw and powerful energy that is within them, and help them be less afraid of it, and perhaps be more able to use it freely.
They will also see their natural style of moving through difficulties and reflect on how they can do this more. It can be very energizing and healing to experience these aspects of ourselves.

Trauma Lense
In the set-up Lizzie will talk about trauma and trauma informed workshops, how to know when trauma responses arise, and how to get the support needed. This will particularly benefit participants who are not trauma informed therapists.  She will position this tool in relation to trauma work, where we don’t blunder into early childhood material before knowing our client’s trauma history. Lizzie does not use the technique when it’s clear that clients have an unresolved trauma history and when they can’t remember their childhood. She stays in the present, gently expanding to safe ways of working together and all this will be thoroughly and carefully explained to participants.

As in many of our treatment methods, we as therapists, need to tread carefully and sensitively. The technique is designed to unpack an early childhood nightmare, and from that to identify core aspects of our life myth. Lizzie considers that dreams sometimes form after traumatic events. Some people do not remember their dreams, and they could use an early childhood memory e.g. being scared of a horse. This technique is not a trauma healing tool, and it is important to use a memory which is not traumatic.

Some clients cannot remember dreams or childhood. Often this is due to trauma. A similar technique can be used by dreaming into something that catches your attention in the room. The client can also be supported to can make up a dream. Alternatives will be offered.

All this is taken from workshops and books from Arny and Amy Mindell, and Max Shupbach, over 30 years. Arny is the founder of POP, and Amy and Max are key teachers, and writers. Lizzie also acknowledges all she has learnt from Elsa Henderson and Emetchi.

CPD Hours: This event counts as 8 hours of category A CPD for PACFA’s membership renewal requirements.

PACFA MEMBER DISCOUNT * PACFA members can avail a discount of 20% off the registration fees for all live events and digital seminars on our website by applying the code ‘PDP20PACFA’ at the checkout.

For full details regarding the event and registration please go to the website.

12/11/2021 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
AUS Eastern Daylight Time
Live Interactive Webcast AUSTRALIA

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