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Seminars, conferences and online resources on psychotherapy and human relationships
Working Therapeutically with Uncertainty - An Existential Perspective
A one-day seminar facilitated by
Professor Ernesto Spinelli

Saturday 1 March 2014

The current degree of anxiety and confusion brought about by the world-wide 'credit crunch' and its ramifications has forced both individuals and organisations to confront uncertainty. Pundits and experts remind us on a daily basis that 'we are in an entirely novel set of circumstances wherein we can assume nothing and cannot rely on past solutions'. Such levels of unpredictability typically provoke significant unease and confusion.

And yet, among the various contemporary psychotherapeutic models, the existential approach emphasises the inevitability of uncertainty. From its foundational stance of relatedness, no one focus-point (such as "I") can ever fully determine with complete and final certainty what and how the world will be, or others will be, or even "I" will be at any point in time. The inevitability of uncertainty and the openness of existence it proclaims alerts us that, any moment, all prior knowledge, values, assumptions and beliefs regarding self, others and the world in general may be "opened" to challenge, reconsideration or dissolution. Paradoxically, existential psychology argues that uncertainty remains a constant given of human experience rather than reveal itself to be just an occasional and temporary consequence arising out of unusual circumstances. If existential thought is correct in this view, what might it have to tell us about the practical aspects of working with uncertainty as psychotherapists? This workshop will address how to draw out and work with the (often) implicit fears and concerns experienced by both therapists and clients when facing the unknown so that its creative and constructive possibilities may be enhanced and incorporated into the therapeutic encounter.


Professor Ernesto Spinelli

Professor Ernesto Spinelli has gained an international reputation as one of the leading contemporary trainers and theorists of existential analysis as applied to psychology and psychotherapy and, more recently, the related arenas of coaching, facilitation and conflict mediation. He is a UKCP registered existential psychotherapist, a Fellow of the British Psychological Society (BPS) and the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) as well as an accredited executive coach and coaching supervisor. In 1999, Ernesto was awarded a Personal Chair as Professor of Psychotherapy, Counselling and Counselling psychology. Ernesto is Director of ES Associates, an organisation dedicated to the advancement of psychotherapy, coaching, facilitation and mediation through specialist seminars and training programmes. His most recent book, Practising Existential Psychotherapy: The Relational World (Sage, 2007) has been widely praised as a major contribution to the advancement of existential theory and practice and is currently being prepared for a 2nd Edition. His previous books include: The Interpreted World: an introduction to phenomenological psychology, 2nd ed (Sage, 2005); Demystifying Therapy (PCCS, 2006); Tales of Un-knowing (PCCS, 2006); and The Mirror and The Hammer: challenging therapeutic orthodoxies (Sage, 2001).


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Payments are made on a secure partner website.
Please read our booking conditions before making your booking

Self-funded: £140
Organisationally-funded: £200
CPD Hours

Certificates of Attendance for 6 hours will be provided at the event

5th Floor Lecture Theatre
Tavistock Centre
120 Belsize Lane

Registration: 09.30
Start: 10.00
End: 17.00