Using Provocative Therapy, I aim to trigger alternate perspectives and change from you (from Latin: ‘provocare’). You will be activated to experience your own objections, resistance and evasions, hindering you from making the intended changes. Thus, you gain a clearer insight into your own inner turmoil: unexpressed wishes or desires vs. your own limitations and fears. In a safe and supporting manner, I will assist you to disempower your own blocks. Lov-ingly, humorously and jointly we will caricature your self-harming behaviour. Together, we will exaggerate ideas and patterns so much that they become absurd and we can both laugh about them. Thereby you will gain more psychological flexibility and choice. As a provocative therapist, I will dare to ex-press views and opinions, which secretly you may have had yourself – and did not even dare to think. By the manner of burlesque, through tone of voice, facial expressions and body language I will always let you know my strong conviction: “You can do it! You have everything you need to find a solution! You’re doing great!”
The main cornerstone of Provocative Therapy is open and good contact between you and me! When I manage to convey to you my deeply felt esteem for you, the words I use might sometimes sound hurtful, but they will help you to leave old patterns behind and discover new perspectives. You will experi-ence, that thoughts, emotions and potential acts which you have feared so much, may actually be voiced by you – without negative consequences. You will discover possibilities for alternative behaviour. Your liberating laugh will be a first step to distance yourself from paralysing blocks.
Since the early 1960s, Frank Farrelly developed Provocative Therapy as a result-oriented short-term therapy. Farrelly ran his own practice and worked at the Mental Health Hospital in Madison, Wisconsin. For over twenty years he conducted therapies for chronic schizophrenic as well as depressive, drug addicted and criminal patients. He combined humour and provocation with empathy and goodwill. During that time, he managed to provoke many “hope-less cases” out of the closed ward of the psychiatric clinic, i.e. his patients were able to work and live independently outside institutions.
As a provocative therapist, I use my empathy and focus on your (sub-) conscious experiencing. Time and again I will interact with you, creating meaning-ful contact, and showing resonance.
Some typical methods are: