Phenomenological principles: that the individual’s lived experience is what determines wellbeing.
Paradoxical theory of change - the more we become who we are, owning without defence or distortion the fullness of our experience of being ill, the greater our options and possibilities. We reconnect to the naturally changing, dynamic process of life in ourselves and in our environment rather than remaining fixed in self-limiting patterns of thought, feeling and behaviour.
Narrative theory: through narrative, people create and consolidate a sense of self, including their sense of wellbeing or illness. We invite group members to identify and review their narratives. Central is the concept of the plasticity or mutability of narrative; by re-working and revising narratives group members can change their sense of self, their lived experience and their wellbeing.
Basic group work principles – utilising the power of groups to support, encourage, confront, give feedback, provide a sense of commonality and connection.
Person-Centred core conditions of Empathy, Congruence, Unconditional Positive Regard; used often enough in their own right to facilitate change.
Transactional Analysis particularly in terms of understanding the Parent Ego State, it’s role in creating self-critical, self punishing, internal dialogues. Facilitation of more nurturing and constructive ways of parenting oneself.
Cognitive Behaviour Therapy concepts of confronting negative mindsets, self-limiting and self-defeating belief systems.
Theory of Unfinished Business to help group members understand where relevant, how the aetiology of their illness may be connected to early psychological or emotional experiences.