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Psychedelics: a group retreat - lessons: playlists, nature & integration

The self may be said to be made up of reflected appraisals.

- Harry Stack Sullivan

Psychedelics: a group retreat - lessons: playlists, nature & integration

    "Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination and life to everything.”   Plato

“If I were not a physicist, I would probably be a musician. I often think in music. I live my daydreams in music. I see my life in terms of music.”  Albert Einstein

           “After silence, that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music.”  Aldous Huxley

Psychedelics: a group retreat - how did it go?

If a pickpocket meets a saint, all he sees are his pockets

- Traditional

                         Psychedelics: a group retreat - how did it go?

"Today we can walk around together, talk, eat, and be silent together.  Later I believe we'll have the opportunity to act and suffer together.  All that is necessary to 'make someone's acquaintance' as they say."  Pierre Sogol, professor of mountaineering, speaking in Rene Daumal's book "Mount Analogue". 

5th international 'breaking convention' psychedelic conference: 1st morning - microdosing and group retreats & ceremonies

'Breaking Convention' - the fifth biennial international conference on psychedelics - took place at Greenwich University in London from 16th-18th August.  There were apparently 1,200 or so attendees for the 6 concurrent programmes - academic, workshop, performance, cinema, entertainment & installations - as well as an art exhibition.  I went primarily because it allowed me to hear pretty much all the relevant research groups in the UK present on their current findings.  As you can see from the other quite extensive writing about psychedelics on this website, I'm very interested in the encouraging emerging research highlighting potential therapeutic value of psychedelics.  Although I focussed on the academic programme, there was much too much even here to manage an ove

Social networks: social identity & the importance of both formal & informal group memberships (what can we do?)

“ Example has more followers than reason. ” - Anonymous

   Social networks: social identity & the importance of both formal & informal groups (what can we do?)

 

key points: 

the social identity model highlights the value of group membership (more & less formal) for both psychological & physical wellbeing - are there groups you would like to join (or initiate) and are there helpful ways you can increase the sense of the importance to you of some of the groups you're a member of (for example by increasing your involvement with them).

Learning to run therapy groups

I run an annual five day training for counselling psychology students on facilitating groups.  I'm using this blog post to upload some of the slides.  For example here's a collection on the current state of psychotherapy & some suggestions on potentially helpful ways of moving forward.  

More to follow! ...

 

 

 

Truly excellent therapists have "grace under interpersonal pressure" - Fascinating new research

Hemingway wrote "Courage is grace under pressure".  New research underlines that "grace under interpersonal pressure" is a key ability of truly excellent therapists.  Study after study has shown that psychotherapists vary considerably in how helpful they are for their clients.  The slide below shows a typical set of findings:

                                       (downloadable as a Powerpoint slide and as a PDF file)

Social relationships, group memberships and health: what we can do

I recently wrote a blog post "Social relationships, group memberships and health: background", where I described some of the mental & physical health benefits of group membership.  I mentioned too the recent research study "Greater number of group identifications is associated with healthier behaviour" where the authors write:"What is already known on this subject? Researchers from a number of disciplines – especially social epidemiologists – have investigated the link between social ties and health behaviour in the past. These researchers have shown that, overall, greater ties predict healthier behaviour.

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