Barry Stevens (1902–1985) was a writer and Gestalt therapist. She developed her own form of Gestalt therapy body work, based on the awareness of body processes. For the Human Potential Movement of the 1970s, she became a kind of "star", but she always refused to accept that role.
Gestalt therapy is an existential/experiential form of psychotherapy that emphasizes personal responsibility, and that focuses upon the individual's experience in the present moment, the therapist–client relationship, the environmental and social contexts of a person's life, and the self-regulating adjustments people make as a result of their overall situation.
Awareness is the ability to directly know and perceive, to feel, or to be cognizant of events. More broadly, it is the state of being conscious of something. Another definition describes it as a state wherein a subject is aware of some information when that information is directly available to bring to bear in the direction of a wide range of behavioral processes. The concept is often synonymous to consciousness and is also understood as being consciousness itself.
The Human Potential Movement (HPM) arose out of the counterculture milieu of the 1960s and formed around the concept of cultivating extraordinary potential that its advocates believe to lie largely untapped in all people. The movement took as its premise the belief that through the development of "human potential", humans can experience an exceptional quality of life filled with happiness, creativity, and fulfillment. As a corollary, those who begin to unleash this assumed potential often find themselves directing their actions within society towards assisting others to release their potential. Adherents believe that the net effect of individuals cultivating their potential will bring about positive social change at large.
She worked with, among others, the psychotherapists Fritz Perls and Carl Rogers. Bertrand Russell and Aldous Huxley were among her friends. Fritz Perls described Barry Stevens as "a natural born therapist."
Friedrich (Frederick) Salomon Perls, better known as Fritz Perls, was a noted German-born psychiatrist and psychotherapist. Perls coined the term 'Gestalt therapy' to identify the form of psychotherapy that he developed with his wife, Laura Perls, in the 1940s and 1950s. Perls became associated with the Esalen Institute in 1964, and he lived there until 1969. His approach to psychotherapy is related to, but not identical to, Gestalt psychology, and it is different from Gestalt theoretical psychotherapy.
Carl Ransom Rogers was an American psychologist and among the founders of the humanistic approach to psychology. Rogers is widely considered to be one of the founding fathers of psychotherapy research and was honored for his pioneering research with the Award for Distinguished Scientific Contributions by the American Psychological Association (APA) in 1956.
Bertrand Arthur William Russell, 3rd Earl Russell, was a British philosopher, logician, mathematician, historian, writer, essayist, social critic, political activist, and Nobel laureate. At various points in his life, Russell considered himself a liberal, a socialist and a pacifist, although he also confessed that his skeptical nature had led him to feel that he had "never been any of these things, in any profound sense." Russell was born in Monmouthshire into one of the most prominent aristocratic families in the United Kingdom.
Stevens was born Mildred Fox. She later changed her name from "Mildred" to "Barry." She was married to the pediatrician Albert Mason Stevens,who co-discovered Stevens–Johnson syndrome.
Stevens–Johnson syndrome (SJS) is a type of severe skin reaction. Together with toxic epidermal necrolysis (TEN) and Stevens-Johnson/toxic epidermal necrolysis (SJS/TEN), it forms a spectrum of disease, with SJS being less severe. Early symptoms of SJS include fever and flu-like symptoms. A few days later the skin begins to blister and peel forming painful raw areas. Mucous membranes, such as the mouth, are also typically involved. Complications include dehydration, sepsis, pneumonia, and multiple organ failure.
Barry Stevens was a self-described "High School drop-out, 1918, because what she wanted to know, she couldn't learn in school."She and her husband moved to Hawai'i in 1934. Before Albert Mason Stevens's death in 1945, Barry moved to the mainland. She worked at Orme Ranch School near Prescott, AZ, and from 1948 to 1951 she was an administrative aide at Deep Springs College, near Big Pine, California. She later worked as an editor in Albuquerque, New Mexico, then relocated to California.
Deep Springs College is a small liberal arts two-year college in Deep Springs, California, United States. With fewer than 30 students at any given time, the college is the smallest institution of higher education in the United States. After completing two years at Deep Springs, students may elect to receive an associate degree, though this seldom happens in practice. Most continue their studies at other universities, out of which two-thirds go on to earn a graduate degree, and over half eventually earn a doctorate.
Barry Stevens is the mother of Judith Sande Stevens (1925-2011) and John O. Stevens (1937-) who is also a writer, Gestalt therapist and NLP-trainer, now known as Steve Andreas.
Steve Andreas was an American psychotherapist and author specializing in Neuro-linguistic programming.
Her publications include Don't Push the River (It Flows by Itself), a first-person account of Stevens' investigations of Gestalt therapy. It shows the author during a period of several months in association with Fritz Perls at Perls' Gestalt Institute of Canada at Lake Cowichan, Vancouver Island, in 1969. Barry Stevens describes both Gestalt therapy theory and practice and her relationship with Fritz Perls in a sensitive way, thus creating a vivid image of Perls in the last months of his life.
Lake Cowichan, , is a town located on the east end of Cowichan Lake and, by highway, is 27 kilometres (17 mi) west of Duncan, British Columbia. The town of Lake Cowichan was incorporated in 1944. The Cowichan River flows through the middle of the town. Cowichan Lake is British Columbia's second-most pristine lake and Cowichan River is designated as a Heritage River.
Vancouver Island is in the northeastern Pacific Ocean. It is part of the Canadian province of British Columbia. The island is 460 kilometres (290 mi) in length, 100 kilometres (62 mi) in width at its widest point, and 32,134 km2 (12,407 sq mi) in area. It is the largest island on the West Coast of North America.
In addition she explored Zen Buddhism, the philosophy of Jiddu Krishnamurti, and Indian American religious practices in an effort "to deepen and expand personal experience and work through difficulties." Alternating with episodes from her earlier days, it became a "best-seller" in the circles of humanistic psychology."We have to turn ourselves upside down and reverse our approach to life."
Her earliest published work was "Hide-away Island" (1934) a loosely autobiographical novel about a woman on the far end of Long Island.
She met Nakata Yoshimatsu, a former valet of Jack London, in Hawai'i in the 1930s, and helped him to write down his recollections.She also wrote an article about Nakata that was published posthumously in 2000.
Gestalt psychology or gestaltism is a philosophy of mind of the Berlin School of experimental psychology. Gestalt psychology is an attempt to understand the laws behind the ability to acquire and maintain meaningful perceptions in an apparently chaotic world. The central principle of gestalt psychology is that the mind forms a global whole with self-organizing tendencies.
Otto Rank was an Austrian psychoanalyst, writer, and teacher. Born in Vienna, he was one of Sigmund Freud's closest colleagues for 20 years, a prolific writer on psychoanalytic themes, the editor of two eminent analytic journals of the era, the managing director of Freud's publishing house, and a creative theorist and therapist. In 1926, Rank left Vienna for Paris, and for the remainder of his life, he led a successful career as a lecturer, writer, and therapist in France and the United States.
Richard Wayne Bandler is an American author and trainer in the field of self-help. He is best known as the co-creator of Neuro-linguistic programming (NLP), a methodology to understand and change human behavior-patterns. He also developed other systems named Design Human Engineering (DHE) and Neuro Hypnotic Repatterning (NHR).
Humanistic psychology is a psychological perspective that rose to prominence in the mid-20th century in answer to the limitations of Sigmund Freud's psychoanalytic theory and B. F. Skinner's behaviorism. With its roots running from Socrates through the Renaissance, this approach emphasizes individuals' inherent drive towards self-actualization, the process of realizing and expressing one's own capabilities and creativity.
Gestalt theoretical psychotherapy is a method of psychotherapy based strictly on Gestalt psychology. Its origins go back to the 1920s when Gestalt psychology founder Max Wertheimer, Kurt Lewin and their colleagues and students started to apply the holistic and systems theoretical Gestalt psychology concepts in the field of psychopathology and clinical psychology Many developments in psychotherapy in the following decades drew from these early beginnings, like e.g. group psychoanalysis, Gestalt therapy, or Katathym-imaginative Psychotherapy. In Europe Gestalt theoretical psychotherapy in its own right has been initiated and formulated on this basis by the German Gestalt psychologist and psychotherapist Hans-Jürgen P. Walter and his colleagues in Germany and Austria. Walter, a student of Gestalt psychologist Friedrich Hoeth, was influenced to form the core of his theoretical concept on the basis of the work of Gestalt theorists Max Wertheimer, Wolfgang Köhler, Kurt Koffka, Kurt Lewin, and Wolfgang Metzger. Walter’s first publication on Gestalt theoretical psychotherapy came out in 1977 Gestalttheorie und Psychotherapie, which is now on its third edition (1994). The majority of the extensive literature on Gestalt theoretical psychotherapy which has been published in the decades since then is in the German language. However, Walter's articles Cognitive Behavior Therapy and Gestalt-Theoretical Psychotherapy and What do Gestalt therapy and Gestalt theory have to do with each other? have been published also in English, as well as Gerhard Stemberger's more recent introductory article Diagnostics in Gestalt Theoretical Psychotherapy.
In psychoanalysis, introjection generally is regarded as the process where the subject replicates in himself behaviors, attributes or other fragments of the surrounding world, especially of other subjects. Cognate concepts are identification, incorporation, and internalization. To use a simple example, a person who picks up traits from his friends is introjecting.
Person-centered therapy, also known as person-centered psychotherapy, person-centered counseling, client-centered therapy and Rogerian psychotherapy, is a form of psychotherapy developed by psychologist Carl Rogers beginning in the 1940s and extending into the 1980s. Person-centered therapy seeks to facilitate a client's self-actualizing tendency, "an inbuilt proclivity toward growth and fulfillment", via acceptance, therapist congruence (genuineness), and empathic understanding.
Laura Perls was a noted German-born psychologist and psychotherapist who helped establish the Gestalt school of psychotherapy.
Self-actualization is a term that has been used in various psychology theories, often in different ways. The term was originally introduced by the organismic theorist Kurt Goldstein for the motive to realize one's full potential. In Goldstein's view, it is the organism's master motive, the only real motive: "the tendency to actualize itself as fully as possible is the basic drive ... the drive of self-actualization". Carl Rogers similarly wrote of "the curative force in psychotherapy – man's tendency to actualize himself, to become his potentialities ... to express and activate all the capacities of the organism". The concept was brought most fully to prominence in Abraham Maslow's hierarchy of needs theory as the final level of psychological development that can be achieved when all basic and mental needs are essentially fulfilled and the "actualization" of the full personal potential takes place, although he adapted this viewpoint later on in life, and saw it more flexibly.
James Solomon Simkin was an early seminal figure in the history of Gestalt Therapy.
Organismic theories in psychology are a family of holistic psychological theories which tend to stress the organization, unity, and integration of human beings expressed through each individual's inherent growth or developmental tendency. The idea of an explicitly "organismic theory" dates at least back to the publication of Kurt Goldstein's The organism: A holistic approach to biology derived from pathological data in man in 1934. Organismic theories and the "organic" metaphor were inspired by organicist approaches in biology. The most direct influence from inside psychology comes from gestalt psychology. This approach is often contrasted with mechanistic and reductionist perspectives in psychology.
Gestalt Practice is a contemporary form of personal exploration and integration developed by Dick Price at the Esalen Institute. The objective of the practice is to become more fully aware of the process of living within a unified field of body, mind, relationship, earth and spirit.
The Psychogenetic System is a collection of theories about how our romantic relationship styles are influenced by our observations in early childhood of our own parents' relationship processes, as well as procedures for discovering, rewriting and adding to more mature perceptions and reactions in our present romantic relationships. Teachworth's Psychogenetic System theories, which comprise a unique system of relationship counseling, were first developed in 1991 by Anne Teachworth, a Certified Gestalt Therapist, the Founder and Director of the Gestalt Institute of New Orleans since 1976. These theories and associated counseling techniques facilitate psychotherapeutic resolutions to a romantic couple's relationship problems by mining their early childhood reactions to their own parents' relationship shortcomings.
Janie Rhyne (1913-1995) was a pioneer in art therapy who used art as expression and communication. She was also a pioneer of Gestalt art therapy, which integrated Gestalt therapy and art therapy. She encouraged clients themselves to interpret and express their feelings and emotions from art works.
Everett Leo Shostrom was a well known American psychotherapist. His approach to psychotherapy was more eclectic than was then normal integrating a wide range of theory, practice, and research. He was perhaps most well known for his film Three Approaches to Psychotherapy and his famous book Man, the Manipulator. He also produced some well known "tests" and "inventories". These include the following: the Personal Orientation Inventory, Personal Orientation Dimensions, the Pair Attraction Inventory, and the Caring Relationship Inventory.
The actualizing tendency is a fundamental element of Carl Rogers' theory of person-centered therapy (PCT). Rogers' theory is predicated on an individual's innate capacity to decide his/her own best directions in life, provided his/her circumstances are conducive to this, based on the organism's "universal need to drive or self-maintain, flourish, self-enhance and self-protect". Counsellors Keith Tudor and Mike Worrall proposed that analogues of the actualizing tendency can be found in texts by various writers from antiquity onward, such as Aristotle, Lucretius, Spinoza, Sándor Ferenczi, Jessie Taft, and Eric Berne.