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November 16th

Dr. Val Thomas - Using Mental Imagery in Counselling and Psychotherapy: Developing More Inclusive Theory and Practice

In this presentation, Val will be talking about the way that mental imagery is currently used in psychological therapies and reflecting on its piecemeal development.  

In general, mental imagery is viewed as a technique or procedure and how it is used depends on the therapist’s particular theoretical orientation. Although most schools acknowledge the therapeutic potential of mental imagery there has been little attention paid to developing more inclusive theory. However, recent developments in other disciplines such as neuroscience and cognitive linguistics, particularly the theory of conceptual metaphor, seem promising with regard to providing theoretical ground for the fundamental importance of mental images in shaping cognition.


She will be presenting a potentially more inclusive model of mental imagery that will allow integrative therapists to draw on the many different approaches to its practice. Her talk will include examples from her own practice to illustrate how mental images representing fundamental dimensions of the self can be deeply integrated into ongoing therapeutic work. 

Dr Val Thomas is a psychotherapist, supervisor and trainer. Until recently, she was Senior Lecturer in Counselling at Anglia Ruskin University. She has specialised for many years in developing the use of mental imagery in psychotherapy. Her book on more inclusive practice with mental imagery is due to be published by Routledge early in 2016.

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