What Is Gestalt Psychotherapy?

Gestalt Therapy is a unique blend of existential, phenomenological (present focussed) and process-experiential approaches developed by Dr. Fritz Perls and Dr. Laura Perls. Fritz and Laura emigrated from Germany to South Africa during World War II and finally settled in New York, USA in the 1950’s. In 1951 the major book “Gestalt Therapy” was published by Perls, Hefferline and Goodman and the first training group was established in New York.

In the years since the first New York Group was established with Fritz, Laura, Paul Goodman, Isadore From and others, the theory and methodology of Gestalt Therapy has been expanded by numerous Institutes and Centres world wide.

Find out more about Gestalt therapy by listening to a podcast (Shrink Rap Radio Psychology Interviews: Number 21 2006): http://shrinkrapradio.com./2006/feed

You may also like to view these You Tube clips.


The Gestalt Method

Takes into account the whole individual and the environmental context as inseparable in the treatment of human discomfort. It focuses on the moment-to-moment awareness, living in the present and ownership of our own inner and outer responses to the environment.

Gestalt Therapy is a growth oriented and relational approach to assist people to enhance their development of self-awareness, to explore and experience new options for living a fulfilling and meaningful life. Gestalt Therapy embodies a holistic perspective, embracing a person’s physical, psychological, intellectual, emotional, interpersonal and spiritual experience.

The aim is to be fully present in the here and now, to attain full energetic expression in dealing with daily life and be fully who we are in body, mind and spirit.

An increased awareness of contact with others and the environment provides clearer opportunities for individuals to increase the quality of their relationships and be able to discover new, creative solutions to their wellbeing.

Ingredients of Gestalt Therapy

  • experiential in method
  • awareness based
  • relationally sensitive
  • grounded in theory
  • here and now in focus
  • holistic in situation

These ingredients can be applied in multiple contexts: counselling, psychotherapy, group work, organisation and corporate development.


Residential 2016