Sunday 13 March 2011

Narrative Training

The first two days of the Narrative Training Programme I'm attending at Newcastle University have been very good.  The first day was largely introductory, and we explored what narrative work means, and had fun de-constructing a few frequently-used terms that are perhaps not always helpful.

On day two we explored externalisation in some depth, which really added to my understanding, and also to my experiencing it in different ways, as well as practicing it with others and observing it in different situations.

Interestingly, I've found that my reading of work by Alice Morgan and Michael White has changed since the programme.  Reading the same words conveys different meaning to me...  I guess that relates to a deeper and more experience-based understanding of externalisation, and the broader thinking behind it.

As I said to Liz Todd, one of the training team, it’s not a set of tools, it's about an orientation, a set of attitudes, characterised by an almost naïve curiosity, but also informed by a set of skills and practices (such as avoiding accidental internalising questions – or interpreting according to a pre-existing ‘expert’ framework such as Gestalt...)

The training team is a great combination, and the other people on the course are very interested and interesting - so I'm really looking forward to the remaining days of the programme in a few weeks' time - and have lots to practice in the interim.

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