Gestalt is a holistic, client centred approach that acknowledges the unity of mind, body, emotions and spirit. Gestalt takes a positive view of human potential, acknowledging the natural tendency of individuals towards growth and development. It is a practical and creative approach to therapy and emphasises that people cannot be understood in isolation but only as part of the environment in which they live. It underlines the importance of the connection between psychological events and the settings in which the events occur. This involves assisting people to get a fuller sense of the ways they feel, think and act in different situations and at different times.
The focus may be on past experiences, current relationships or working in the here and now attending to body posture and breath or where emotions might be held in the body. Gestalt emphasises awareness, and can offer a contemplative and transpersonal approach through the use of image and metaphor, and by exploring the relationship between inner and outer worlds or different aspects of self.
Gaining information about how people live and relate to the world in which they live, as well as their own internal world, in turn helps increase choices about how to live in the world and interact with other people.