Grounded and Holistic - the Dialectics of Psychotherapy
I recently had a conversation with an attorney to discuss some business changes we are considering for Sagestone. At one point in the conversation, he warned us to be "wary of others' perceptions" and we "would need to earn our place in the community of professionals and consumers" in the area, because some might confuse what we do- Counseling and Coaching with a Grounded, Holistic Approach- with "hocus-pocus." Fast forward to this week. I had two sessions that directly engaged patterns of human perception, how we can improve our thought processes to create spaces for connection. Our approach to this is what is called dialectic- looking not only at our own point of view, but also trying to see the same point from another's point-of-view without judgment of rightness/wrongness or goodness/badness. In other words, really trying to understand the other, so that we can approach each other with compassion and empathy. I was reminded of the conversation with the attorney, and - ding! - this question popped in my head, "Was he talking about the tagline of our business- 'grounded and holistic approach'?" Hmmm... Got me thinking that maybe some explanation is needed? So, here goes: At Sagestone, we define grounded and holistic as an approach based in the psychological study of healing trauma (and addiction, and other mental health issues), healing family systems, learning new skills, and engaging community to provide access to the tools that encourage change of self and others. Translation: we might recommend holding onto a stone from the garden if you are having a stressful day, because maybe it reminds you of a place of peace by association. We might also suggest the use of essential oils if you struggle with flashbacks or certain kinds of memories. Since our olfactory sense (our sense of smell) is so strong in the formation and recall of memory, using a healing scent might help to stay in the here-and-now, instead of getting lost in memories of the past.
This is what "Grounded" means to us: finding comfort in one's skin, in the space one is in, in the present moment. At Sagestone, we integrate and use many kinds tools, from traditional talk therapy, to art making, and yes, even holding a memory (in the form of a stone) in your palm, as a way to find hope, comfort, healing, or a different way to think about the past (among other tools). In addition to these "grounding" tools, we also consider the whole person. Who you are, your goals and dreams, who your people are- family, friends, colleagues- are all aspects of the whole you, and knowing you is an essential part of the therapeutic process. We will coordinate with your support team - doctors, psychiatrist, teachers, and/or parents. Together, we (you and I) create a plan of action- you drive the bus, we help you navigate 'til you know the way. This is what we mean by "Holistic" - you, as you live your life, with all the people, places, and preferences that make you the unique individual you are. To us, "grounded and holistic" integrates the ways we meet you where you are, empower you to determine your needs and goals, and support you in finding the change you want. I can see how another's perception of "grounded and holistic" might be different from this. On our part, it is a privilege to engage with our clients - you - in a way that helps you find comfort, engage your life your way, and make progress toward the goals that are important to you.
Hope this helps! And as always-