After reading the chapter on Gestalt therapy, it seems that there is certainly more to this type of therapy than I had previously thought. Although Gestalt is not widely used, there are some aspects of it that I think could be useful in any therapeutic setting. The first key concept of gestalt that I think is useful is keeping the therapy focused in the here and now. Certainly we all have things in our past that affect the way we handle ourselves in the present, but bringing those past hurts into the current setting and dealing with them here and now seems like a good plan to me. Of equal importance is the fact of a client having personal awareness of themselves and the environment around them. I think the idea of a client being responsible for their actions and owning their reality could at the very least, be a challenge.
The idea of a client reintegrating his or her experience into their whole self in the therapeutic process is the key. I like the idea that the whole is greater than the sun of its parts. Finally, the idea of a person knowing who they are and who they are not as opposed to who they think they should be (Paradoxical Theory of Change) is the catalyst of change. I think this idea transcends many approaches to therapy because it allows the individual to choose what and who they want to be. As stated in the text, gestalt therapy allows a person to try on new behaviors and seeing what works for them and what does not. In conclusion, in certain settings I can see where Gestalt therapy could benefit a client, but the client would need to be screened very carefully to make certain that their psyche could handle such a unique and hands on approach. The idea of a Gestalt group seems a daunting task, but something I may have the opportunity to employ in the future. We shall see what the future holds.