Sustaining Our Spirit in the Work

Cohosts: Stephen Gaddis, Mona Klausing & Peggy Sax

Thursday June 19, 2019: 9:00-12:30 pm (3 CEs)

Location: Barton’s Lookout

Session Outline

Steve Gaddis (Founder/Director Narrative Therapy Initiative, Salem Massachusetts); Mona Klausing (Co-director, Narrative Initiatives San Diego) and Peggy Sax (Founder, Reauthoring Teaching) will discuss some of the enthusiasms and challenges our learning communities experience as we work to sustain narrative practices in the future.   

  • As a collaborative venture, how can we come together around a shared vision of building a global learning community while at the same time building a culture of relating that honors local knowledges and the social location of its members?
  • What are we learning about how local communities might think about educating and training persons who are seeking a deeper understanding of Narrative principles and practices, and how these might be best learned, sustained and applied to their particular professional and personal contexts?
  • What will help us resist burnout toward sustaining a narrative future with support for practice, reflection, replenishment and community building?

As this gathering winds down, we will explore personal take-aways and next steps.

Learning Objectives

Participants will:

  1.  Reflect and build on take-aways from this gathering
  2. Discuss the importance of exposing people to narrative ideas over an extended period of time and living/learning through community experiences.
  3.  Gain insight into the steps taken to develop a multi-generational community of practitioners.
  4.  Hold together the creative tension that emerges when teachers and participants strive to offer rigorous training while embodying the spirit of collaboration and community.


Stephen Gaddis, Ph.D., LMFT Director and Co-Founder, Narrative Therapy Initiative, Salam, MA. Steve has studied, practiced, and taught narrative therapy since 1994. He earned his International Postgraduate Diploma in narrative therapy at the Dulwich Centre in Adelaide, Australia, where he studied with Michael White. Steve also spent a year teaching narrative therapy in the graduate school of counseling at the University of Waikato in Hamilton, New Zealand. He has published and presented on narrative therapy nationally and internationally. Currently, Steve has a full-time narrative therapy and supervision practice in Salem, Mass., and he teaches narrative therapy at William James College and Boston College as well as independently through the NTI. Steve received his doctorate in marriage and family therapy from Syracuse University. Contact Steve at [email protected].

Mona Klausing, MFT serves as Co-Director of Narrative Initiatives San Diego , a Narrative counseling & training center, where she oversees clinical operations and supervises a team of pre-licensed clinicians. Previously Mona was the Clinic Administrator at San Diego State University’s off-campus counseling center, The Center for Community Counseling & Engagement, before taking her position at NISD. She is a part-time faculty in the Dept. of Counseling & School Psychology graduate and undergraduate programs at SDSU and maintains a private practice with an emphasis on working professionals and multi-ethnic couples. She is an AAMFT Clinical Fellow and Approved Supervisor & Mentor. Prior to joining the field of therapy, Mona was a marketing and public relations executive in the high tech and non-profit sectors for 20 years. More info at:

Peggy Sax, Ph.D. (Middlebury, Vermont), is in independent practice as a Licensed Psychologist, consultant, international teacher and trainer. Peggy has apprenticed herself to narrative therapy since the early 1990s.  She is the author of several articles, the book, Re-authoring Teaching: Creating a Collaboratory, the companion Re-authoring Teaching website, and the non-profit organization by the same now. As mother, grandmother and teacher, she is grateful for opportunities to experience life and learning in the company of future generations.  Whether online, on-the-road or within her beautiful home state of Vermont, it gives Peggy great joy to bring together favorite people, ideas and practices – to learn, engage, play and replenish together.