How does PBSP work?

It starts simply with a client sitting and sharing a concern or just sharing what they are observing and noticing about themselves. Something in their life may not be going well or just describing how they are feeling. As a client that is all the preparation that is needed. The client is helped to map out their inner world in the present, they enter, with the facilitator, a ‘possibility sphere’ where they travel symbolically through time and space. Objects may be used as symbols to help the clients’ inner world to be externalized. The structure works by facilitator tracking what is going on in the client’s body, posture, breath and their interaction with others, as a result of paying attention, the client may become aware of something from their history. We then look at any resonances this scene may have with the client’s past, and explore what may have happened in the past to make this a sensitive issue. It may become clear how his or her history is alive in the here-and-now, rather than dwelling on the past, the next stage is to create an ‘antidote’. This new or symbolic memory and is informed by what was missing back in the client’s history and is designed to give the client precisely what they needed in the situation. The client will know when this antidote or new memory feels right or ‘a perfect fit’, and this leads to a conclusion where there is some healing, or satisfactory resolution for the client on a both a literal and a symbolic level.

Although the Pesso-Boyden (PBSP) method can be used in one-to-one sessions or in small groups. The facilitator follows the client moment by moment in a highly structured process. If conducted in a group then group members are invited to take a symbolic role in support of the client, but will not be called on to improvise or do anything they are not completely comfortable with. There is generally time for 3 or 4 people to be client and even those not taking that role find they have major insights and are profoundly moved by the process.

“Our last session turned out to be surprisingly powerful and it took me a quite a while to ‘come back down to earth’ again. I have managed to re-create the visualisation of the ‘ideal father’ on several occasions since our session and I think this has reinforced the new memory, which is probably now permanently embedded in my memory bank. I am finding that as we go on with the sessions, more and more negative issues and recollections are emerging as if being uncovered in a sort of hierarchical way. As one issue starts to be resolved, another will take it’s place, like unpeeling an onion. I feel much more at peace with several of the issues that we have dealt with and I am surprised that others have surfaced but this must be a good thing and I have a sense of progress in the journey of self awareness but a recognition that there is still a way to go> ” PBSP Client

For more information please visit the PBSP website

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