Narrative therapy is a type of therapy that is drawn from the work of Michel Foucault and developed in the 1970s and 1980’s by Australian social worker Michel White and David Epson of New Zealand. Its main philosophy is to separate people from their problems, and encourage them to rely on their own skills to reduce the problems that exist in their lives.
The goal of a narrative therapist is to work with the individual to come up with an alternative story that better matches with what they actually want from their lives. There are many techniques that the therapist would employ in order to achieve this. One of them is by constructing a narrative, where the therapist and the client work together to tell the client’s story in the client’s own words. During this process, the therapist and the client look for new meanings in the story that might help them change their existing stories and create new ones. This process is called “re-authoring” or “re-storying” which is based on the idea that one event can have many different interpretations and meanings. Another way is through deconstruction, where the therapist would help the client look into the core of their issues. For instance, when a story has been dominant in our lives for an extended period or time, we may over generalize it to all aspects of their lives. The narrative therapist can help the client reduce the story to its parts in order to discover what the problem they are struggling with really is.
Narrative therapy is different from many other kinds of therapy because the client takes the lead. Click here to book a free consultation call with a narrative therapist at the Toronto Neurofeedback and Psychotherapy Centre.