Steven Keightley, MA, MFT
My primary approach to clinical consultation is psychodynamic, although I don’t use it exclusively. The psychoanalytic underpinnings of the psychodynamic approach are a foundation for clinical understanding and insight. Despite the prevalence of behavioral treatment in our field today, I strongly believe there is a place for the unconscious in our clinical work and in our understanding of our clients.
I am also drawn to the theories of Carl Jung and believe the symbolic and archetypal realms provide rich lenses through which we can gain additional and valuable insight into client material.
What does the word “psychodynamic” mean?
“Psychodynamic” describes a set of psychological theories that are informed by traditional approaches to attachment theory, Object Relations, and psychoanalysis. The “dynamic” portion of the word implies movement and dynamism and is a nod to the therapist being open to the emotional process between therapist and client, noticing both the therapist’s own feelings while observing the client’s verbal and non-verbal communications related to their emotional state. This does not mean the therapist is not also engaged and active in the counseling session.
What is the unconscious?
The unconscious is the realm of dreams, visualization, and imagery. It is where visions and creative ideas are born. Frequently it is our unconscious beliefs that influence our behavior and choices. Through a long-term psychotherapy and exploration, we can hope to bring these matters to light. The idea of psychotherapy is to foster emotional and psychological healing by making the unconscious conscious.
“Until you make the unconscious conscious, it will direct your life and you will call it fate.” – Carl Jung
For more information about my clinical consultation services please call or email me. 510-560-3638