Chairwork refers to a collection of experiential methods which use space, movement, and dialogue to bring about change.
Chairwork is believed to be one of the most powerful therapeutic interventions available and forms an integral part of several approaches including Psychodrama, Gestalt Therapy, CBT, Compassion Focused Therapy, Schema Therapy, Voice Dialogue, and others.
Research indicates that chairwork is also effective as a stand-alone ‘technique’ and an ingredient of psychotherapy. Together, these methods form the bedrock of ‘Dialogical Psychotherapy’, ‘Dialogical Coaching’, and ‘Action Supervision’.
The process of chairwork
Chairwork invites you to speak directly to a problem or difficulty, rather than just talking about that problem.
Through this process of dialogue, changes are brought about in a way which is powerful, memorable, and sometimes rapid. Some examples of chairwork include:
- Speaking to the individuals who have wounded you or inspire you.
- Soothing the parts of you that hurt and managing the parts that cause pain.
- Safely revisiting painful memories so that they can be resolved.
- Getting to know the parts of you which are unfamiliar or forgotten.
Chairwork is often an intense, yet profound, process. We will ensure that your unique experience of chairwork is safe, supportive, and at your own pace.
The purpose of chairwork
Depending on your needs and goals, chairwork can have many different aims.
Some of the ways in chairwork is used include:
- Strengthening the positive parts of yourself, such as your ‘compassionate self’ or ‘wise self’.
- Managing distressing experiences such as upsetting thoughts and feelings.
- Developing new skills, such as being assertive or being vulnerable with others.
- Moving on from past hurts, including traumatic childhood experiences.
- Letting go of lingering feelings like anger, sadness, and guilt.
- Overcoming indecision and uncertainties which get you ‘stuck’.
- Being at peace with losses in your life.
- Making sense of dreams and fantasies.
- Understanding and accepting the different parts of yourself.
Chairwork with us
Chairwork is an expert provider of experiential interventions, and the proud creators of 'Dialogical Psychotherapy', 'Dialogical Coaching', and 'Action Supervision'.
Our team have undertaken specialist training in many therapy approaches which embrace chairwork, including Compassion Focused Therapy, Schema Therapy, Emotion Focused Therapy, and Voice Dialogue. We continue to drive developments in this field through a combination of research, training, and supervision.
We believe in the importance of providing the highest quality training and therapy possible. Accordingly, our directors receive ongoing supervision from specialist supervisors in the fields of compassion-focused therapy, schema therapy, CBT, gestalt therapy, voice dialogue, executive coaching, and psychodrama methods.
Get in touch with us if you have questions about therapy, supervision, or training with our service.