The Gestalt Counseling and Training Institute of Ann Arbor

Holistic Therapy for Mind, Body and Soul

Gestalt Therapy draws on classical Gestalt psychology's notion that all stimuli (data) that is presented to us by the environment is essentially "raw" or neutral. The raw mass of data is then organized and shaped by the perceiver into "wholes" which we call "gestalts". These subjectively structured wholes (gestalts), not the raw data, comprise what is then called "experience". Everything that is experienced through thoughts, feelings, memories, sensations, associations, culture, gender, appetite, desire, impulses, needs, and so forth, influences the way a person experiences reality. Thus all of experience becomes a co-creation. Because individuals are so unique, Gestaltists believe that no two people will ever view the same experience the same way.

The Gestalt Therapist views life (the way we play, work, live, make love, die, etc.) as a "creative process". Therapy becomes a modality to objectively examine the way individuals, couples, groups and systems creatively adapt to their environment. Change occurs by heightening awareness and modifying the behaviors that impede the process of effective adaptation.