Mental Health without the Pathology

1-day workshop | Saturday 16th March 2024 | James Barnes | Exeter

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James will address the problems with mainstream approaches, their links to harmful social and political structures, and outline various models that seek to remedy the problem. He will touch on the relational movement in psychotherapy, the Neurodiversity Paradigm, the Power Threat Meaning Framework, and an approach called ‘Open dialogue.’ All of these have different but largely compatible ways of approaching mental distress that together provide viable alternatives to the current medical mental health model.

Topics we will explore:

The day will be comprised of 5 sections, which are as follows:

  • Capitalism, Psychiatry and the Medicalisation of Distress: The Current Mental Health System
  • Trauma, Social Injustice and Alienation: The interpersonal and social nature of the problem
  • New Paradigms 1: The 'Relational Turn;' Feminist Critiques; Disability Models
  • New Paradigms 2: The Power Threat Meaning framework & Open dialogue

What now? Putting this into practice. Each of these themes will be explored with a wide lens in order to give an overview of the ‘non-pathologising’ space and the reasons for its need in current times.

Who is this workshop for?

To gain a general understanding of the assumptions behind the mainstream mental health model and its practise – and the problems with such assumptions. To gain a wide view of ’non-pathological’ alternatives the current mental health system & mental health treatment. To be able to recognise and articulate the strengths and weaknesses of each, and feel confident in speaking about them.

Trainee counsellors Qualified counsellors and psychotherapists Any audiences/groups/organisations particularly connected to the topic

Meet the tutor

James Barnes has worked in mental health for the last 20 years and has been a psychotherapist for the last 6. He has a background in philosophy and relational psychoanalysis, and teaches, supervises and writes. He has been working on a de-pathologised, relational alternative to mainstream thinking about psychological and emotional distress.

Course Venues:   Exeter   |   Poole   

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