Programs around the world
Facilitating authentic living & working
I am available for online sessions, or in person in Los Angeles, Shanghai, or Hobart.
I am happy to talk to you by email, phone, skype, etc. I am available to answer any questions you may have about me or the way I work.
The next step is to read my disclosure statement, which provides a lot of background detail about the parameters of doing therapy with me. Its fairly long because its important to me to be clear about what I offer.
Again, if you have any questions about that, I am available to discuss them with you.
The next step is to fill out a client intake form, where you provide me with your basic details.
After that, we make our first appointment. This goes for 1.5 hours, and covers some of your background - so I can understand more about your larger context, and the current issue that you want to work with.
Subsequent sessions are usually 1 hour in length, though some people prefer longer sessions.
My rate is hourly (and that includes couples). Rates are listed here, and you self select what fits according to a scale.
Frequency is usually weekly, but that can also vary to suit your needs.
I suggest starting with 6 sessions - in that time, we will be able to get a good sense of how we work together, and you can evaluate whether you want to continue after that point.
How we do it over the internet
The medium of contact is the software form - Skype, FaceTime, Google hangouts, WeChat, or there are other choices as well. I find earphones result in a better sound quality, and prevent any echo, but it can work fine without that.
What we do
Sessions then proceed much as normal therapy sessions would. The main thing that is important from your end is that you are in a place where you feel private, and won’t be interrupted. The subject of what we work with is something that can come from either of us. You may bring a burning issue, or want to deal with something that is much more a long term concern. I might notice something that you had not previous considered or been aware of, and that may interest you to explore.
The therapy process involves some and perhaps all of the following:
Let me know if there is any area you would like to hear more about.
Contact me with questions.
Or enrol now as a client.
The Gestalt Approach
Is grounded in the here and now
When feelings are not fully experienced in the past, they carry over into the present and interfere with experiencing in the present moment. This ‘unfinished business’ is addressed by facing what has been avoided, and bringing it gently into full awareness, in the now.
Emphasises that each person is responsible for his or her own destiny
People are supported to find their own way in life. The acceptance of personal responsibility is seen as key to achieving maturity.
Respects each person as the best expert on themselves
Rather than starting with the therapist’s insight and answers, value is placed on the client’s perception of reality. Awareness is heightened and explored, people are supported to find their own truths.
Supports genuine encounter
Talking about experiences can be interesting, informative, but is once-removed from life. It is not an effective way of working through difficulties.
The vividness and immediacy of direct contact is utilised in Gestalt as a potent force for change. Whatever problems exist outside of the therapy relationship can be examined in the present moment. New and fresh experiments are designed to bring novel perspectives to old problems.
Facilitates the unification (‘re-owning’) process
Accepting all aspects of self without judgement, a person becomes strong enough to carry on with their own personal growth. The more unified a person is, the more authentic and vital their existence will be.
Utilises the paradox of change
Change results not from striving to be different, but from accepting fully what is. Change then becomes inevitable; in harmony with the dynamism of life, rather than effortful work.
Is sensitive to vulnerability
Contemporary Gestalt pays attention to a person’s need for support, both internal and external. ‘As much as is necessary, and as little as possible’ is the suggestion of Laura Perls. This modern approach to Gestalt takes into account the effects of shame and over exposure in life and in therapy, and works to create a solid ground of relationship which underpins the natural momentum of change.
A Note on Multiple Relationships
The current orthodoxy in the world of psychotherapy either strongly discourages, or outright bans having any kind of relationship in addition to the formal therapeutic one.
And then, theres the real world, where one does not always have such absolute control, or even the option of such 'pure' relationships.
In any relationship - therapeutic or otherwise, what is required is authenticity, awareness, and dialogue. These are the values we promote, and try to live by.
If a multiple (otherwise known as 'dual') relationship is a part of our interaction, we invite you to review the following questions, and we can discuss them.
Dual role discussion points - - things to consider (via Cedar Barstow)
A 3 minute introduction
ROHAN ~ Medical Doctor and Consultant
Steve is a truly gifted teacher and therapist who is clearly practising his calling. He brings wisdom, genuine caring and compassion to our sessions and he has helped me finally navigate a path towards a healthier and more skilful way to approach anxiety, stress and behaviours that were damaging to my relationships and my work. I have seen psychologists before and been left with little. This is the first time that I have seen genuine changes to my mental well-being that has improved the quality of my relationships, work and life.
NATALIE ~ Acupuncturist, R.N
I first met Steve through a presentation he did on Family Constellations. This was a very powerful and releasing experience. I since contacted him for personal work and professional supervision. I have benefitted greatly from continued sessions, I feel aware of the roles I play in my life, and have stopped blaming others for the decisions I have made. I feel in control of the direction my life takes now. This, amongst a myriad of other revelations, has given me greater freedom and a sustained sense of happiness.
PAUL ~ Drug & Alcohol counsellor
Four years training with Steve Gunther was life changing. I learnt so much about myself and how I am in the world, how am I with clients and how to deal with and engage any person in any situation.
I gained the skills to practice Gestalt Psychotherapy and the confidence to do it in my own style. I have gone on to expand my Gestalt training into Community Development and helping effect societal change.
Steve has a hands on assured teaching style which is just as effective as his brilliant personal counselling work - powerful and profound, yet guided by the clients and the students.
JENNY ~ Therapist
I have know Steve for 18 years, experiencing him as Gestalt teacher and therapist. I have grown to have a great deal of respect for him and have always valued all that he strives for. He is a person of great integrity, intelligence, wisdom, energy, sincerity and care.
Added to this has always been a commitment to his own personal and professional growth, demonstrating itself in humility, confidence and determination. I have always felt that he has had my best interests at heart, which resulted in me being gently guided towards taking risks, in healing my past and leaping into my future.
The 'work' that I have done with Steve over the years has helped shape my life and the person I am today, which is greatly fullfilled and happy.
SHIRLEY ~ Psychotherapist
Having been a client of Steve's, I confidently recommend his services to any client who is seeking therapy. I found him to be contactful, empathic, intuitive. fully understanding of and tuned in to the issues I presented. I felt very safe in his care and professional expertise, and I experienced personal growth, increased self awareness and complete satisfaction through the consultations I had with him.
BRYANT ~ Natural therapist and Homeopath
Gestalt Therapy with Steve Gunther gave me two focal insights in particular. One was how my energy moved between my ‘introvert’ and ‘extrovert’ self, and the other how my physical body carried the demand I placed on myself as expectation.
One session I clearly remember was Steve helping me elicit an image of a ball and chain around my left leg (which was chronically arthritic). As I processed those feelings and felt images, I saw shifts including release of tension, emotionally and energetically, over the period. I am very grateful to Steve for his devotion and his art, and for his very astute processing skills. Good memories.