Narrative Therapy Guide to Individual & Couple Counselling

Narrative therapy is a highly respectful, highly effective, non-blaming approach to individual and couple counselling, which centeres people as the experts in their own lives.

Dr. Stephen Madigan’s therapeutic work is influenced by the idea that the people coming to see him in therapy are much more skilled and far more interesting than the narrow descriptions they often come to therapy with and/or the thin conclusion others may hold about them.

In his development of the notion that people’s lives are organized by the stories they tell and those that others construct about them, Stephen works to re-author and counter those stories (forming counter-stories) that shape and negatively affect people’s lives and relationships.

Before the first two hour session even begins, Dr. Madigan assumes that the people seeking his help arrive into therapy with numerous (and very often forgotten!) competencies, beliefs, values, survival skills, commitments and abilities. Uncovering, discussing and appreciating a person’s unique abilities assists them in the process of changing their ‘relationship’ with the problems in their lives.

Dr Madigan helps people resolve longstanding problems by enabling them to separate their lives and relationships from specific historical ideas, influences, habits, patterns and stories they judge to be impoverishing and no longer helpful.

Dr Madigan’s ideas on therapeutic change involve discussions with you that include:

  1. Helping you clearly define what the patterns, habits, history, context and language of the problem is,
  2. Discovering how the problem negatively affects your life and relationships,
  3. Discussing the many losses the problem has created in your lives and discovering your response to these losses,
  4. Uncovering and appreciating your skills, knowledge, history and abilities that contradict the problem lifestyle,
  5. Helping you craft a statement of position regarding your preferred pathways to change in both your own life and in relationships (with your partner, work, children, family, friends etc) and,
  6. Helping you maintain and sustain these changes as building block solutions for long term health and change.