What happens when we shift from viewing our bodies as a single entity to experiencing our bodies as a community of diverse members each with their own experience, position and stories? We will take a look at micro-practices and lines of enquiry that can disrupt the familiar and expected ways our bodies might be invited (or not) into therapeutic spaces and conversations.This can assist us in attending to experiences of being mandated to therapy (by people, institutions or ideas), responding to the effects of trauma/non-choice, and inviting us to move in unexpected ways in response and, at times, resistance to the ways in which we are being demanded.
Rocio and Akansha extended the following invitation to participants in a Re-Authoring Teaching Consultation Group from January-April 2023.Are you feeling a sense of isolation and disenchantment in your work? Do you feel you are being recruited into stories of dominant ideas of what a “good therapist” is or stories that are pathologizing of the people who consult you? We invite you to resist these stories and ideas in this community consultation group and think together about what you would prefer your practice to embody. Rocio and Akansha will create space for conversations about preferred ethics, consultation with your insider knowledges and wisdom, and articulation of consonant practices and ways of being. They will draw on their lived experiences of working in sites of “modern power” and support you in inhabiting your narrative multilingual voice. In this Salon they will share stories and ideas that group members generated for further circulation and co-sparking.
In this Collab we remember Michel White who died in April 2008. We bring together a number of people lucky enough to know Michael personally to talk with each other about memories, Michael's legacy and what lies ahead.
In this Collab on using re-membering practices in writing, we explored ideas to help connect you with your own team that supports you to be the person/therapist/teacher you most want to be. We worked with some writing prompts to put this into practice and see who we long to talk with and what you hope they might ask us about.
This collab will discuss the origination of a genre of inquiry that David Epston has come to refer to as 'Hauntings from the future' (by benevolent ghosts) in intractable disputes between parent(s) and their adolescent children.
September 17, 2023 Collab Salon: The Power of Resonance and Transport: Experiences of a Narrative Reflecting Team
The Vermont Center for Narrative Practice (VCNP) has been utilizing a Narrative Reflecting Team consultation model that incorporates the 4 part “Retelling” process outlined by Michael White (2005, p. 190)1 for Outsider Witnesses: 1) Expression 2) Image 3) Personal Resonance 4) Transport. Through our conversation together at the Collab Salon, our aim is to share our experiences as a team particularly with the processes of Resonance and Transport and to learn how participants have also incorporated these elements into their own narrative practices (whether through reflecting teams or not). It is our hope that this dialogue will foster new understandings of these mechanisms and move us to consider different ways of incorporating these outsider witness practices into our work with others.
Today’s young people are some of the most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. Significant disruptions are predicted as they navigate more frequent extreme weather events, in parallel with major lifestyle and community changes as we move to a zero-carbon economy. Research is identifying how deeply concerned many young people are about what they will face in their future in both the global north and south. How might we in the narrative community offer safe and compassionate spaces for children and young people to voice their concerns, be heard, and have their feelings validated and respected? There is a role for young people to be energized and active in addressing the climate emergency and it is important that we walk alongside them to be part of the solutions.
This Collab brings forward the research and approaches of SuEllen Hamkins, Lynne Rosen, and Navid Zamani as they consider the ethics and effects of love and imagination, and the helpful-ness of attunement. Presenters will outline some of their theoretical assumptions, its intersection with broader social justice ethics and values, and the life that these practices breathe in our relationships with those who consult us. Their conversation gives a sneak preview of the new series now in development: Narrative Therapy, Trauma & the Affective Turn.
How can we teach Narrative therapy in a way which responds to its philosophy and ethics? How can Narrative therapy change and develop in our collaborations and engaging with new ideas? How can we work together in the team paying attention to power relationships? How can we be narrative practitioners in actual political situation in Russia and in the world? When we’ve started our project, KRAI, together with our colleagues, we were drawn to this questions and a lot more. We’ve developed a diverse yearlong program on Narrative therapy and community work as long as another laboratories and workshops. We are glad to share our experience at the Collab salon.
December 18, 2022 Collab Salon: The X-Powers Project: Calling up super-powers and wonderment, to subvert seemingly stuck stories
This Salon showcases highlights from our shared passion project of several years: the scouring for and nurturance of those unique client superpowers that can encourage courageous imaginations. Building on the centrality of the narrative practice pantheon, we will share our uses of imaginative Know-How and inspirations from Narrative Therapy Wonderland. Client story examples will include, officiating mother-daughter family reunions, the case of the talking shower cricket, the protest power of panic attacks, and the giant misunderstood tarantula.
Irene (trauma survivor) and Christoffer Haugaard (psychologist) developed a practice of witnessing in relation to Irene’s alter ego in fictionalized life stories. This developed out of necessity in order to address an intensely traumatic life history and powerful identity conclusions that were out of reach for regular conversation. The approach that we developed used two essential survival strategies from Irene’s childhood: Her invention of an alter ego and her imagination of having an audience to the injustices in her life. Over time, these practices became the central structure of our collaboration. In this collab salon, Christoffer will describe this practice with examples and present Irene’s account of the effects.
In July 2020, the BIPOC narrative community was launched with the intention of providing narrative practitioners of color a supportive space to discuss “local” ideas, innovative practices, amplify one another’s work, and process their experiences. The community organizers also hoped to mentor and support newer narrative practitioners, and practitioners working in spaces that did not privilege narrative ideas or postmodern therapy practices. As the community enters its second year, planning committee members Ingrid, Candea, Shuo, and Akansha shared lessons learned and their hopes for how they envision the community will grow and be sustained in the future.