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The heart of psychotherapy

Updated: Apr 6, 2023

The Heart of Psychotherapy

I love the warmth and the wisdom of this psychotherapy book by Robert E Hobson.

In these covid times we are all trying to keep 'being' together, despite the face coverings, the 2 metres apart and the restrictions to our contact with our loved ones and each other.

It feels hard, and feelings of isolation, separation and aloneness can surface for us all.

Individuals with histories of abandonment, abuse, rejection, neglect and failed attachment face an additional challenge: COVID-related isolation inevitably evokes childhood emotions and memories of the past, increasing the sense of painful aloneness.  

For Hobson the word heart in the title Forms of Feeling: The Heart of Psychotherapy can be understood as a concern with 'the centre.'

The basis of his approach to psychotherapy is a developing relationship. What we say and do in therapy is aimed at promoting 'understanding,' a conversation, a meeting between two people, in the here and now, in such a way that learning can be effective in other relationships.

We all need adequate social supports, the client may look to the therapist first for connection if they are struggling with the isolation imposed by COVID, before being able to connect more with their own support systems.

As therapists we need to know how to receive, express and share feeling with our clients, how to 'learn a language of the heart.' (Hobson)

'The heartbeat of therapy is a process of learning how to go on becoming a person together with others.' And that learning never ends.....especially in a pandemic


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