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Techniques for Personal Responsibility

How can one practically proceed to promote personal responsibility in clients? In the first instance, the most important thing is to transform ‘why’ questions into ‘how’ questions. The question “Why do you do that?” delivers an explanation. The question “How do you do that?” stimulates a seeking process in experience, which helps one to understand why the thoughts, feelings, viewpoints, impulses, motivations, action preferences etc., lead to the undesired situation. Furthermore, it is about achieving a division of the self-experience. This is a turning point and a lynchpin for the processing of the internal conflict underlying each theme. Therefore, the techniques are similar to representation work, and the applied practical work with ‘parts’, which is currently utilised in many educational facilities.

In our meta-theoretical thinking, however, we take up the elaborate and precise understanding of internal dynamics, which has been developed in Gestalt Therapy, and in particular in Frank Staemmler and Werner Bock’s version, with regard to the processing of need-avoidance conflicts. This is not about a type of reconciliation between inner impulses or parts of the psyche, nor about saying goodbye to culprit introjects, but rather about a dissolution of the coupling between need and fear. Here the technique plays a central role in concisely developing two contradictory self-representations, and then comparing them with each other, so that their conflict can become clear. The feeling of different <b> Self-Representations</b> also enables one to gain inner freedom. One can notice that from different inner waiting times one can arrive at completely different convictions, feelings and impulses.

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