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Home arrow Psychology arrow Using Mental Imagery in Counselling and Psychotherapy: A Guide to More Inclusive Theory and Practice


This chapter has provided an introduction to using the framing image of the plant as a site for therapeutic work. This image is particularly useful as it offers both a concrete representation of an individual’s dominant personality traits and also a means of capturing the dynamic processes of human development. Although I have identified some common themes and patterns in the plant forms, in the end, each imagery representation is unique to the individual. Once clients have a clear picture of their plant form, this image can operate as a means of facilitating and tracking their growth and development over time. Furthermore, this image provides a particularly helpful and positive means for clients to deepen their self-understanding - representing oneself as a plant highlights the natural cyclical processes of life and engenders hope. In addition, it can offer a corrective to the pathologising tendencies evident in contemporary Western culture’s attachment to models of linear progress. I will be returning to more discussion of the plant image in the next chapter when I examine how it can be integrated with the other two framing images into a powerful multi-aspected vehicle for ongoing therapeutic work.


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