By Rich Simon
A few decades ago, when young therapists like myself watched Salvador Minuchin, Virginia Satir, Carl Whitaker, or other leading lights, it was like watching magicians—you didn’t know whether they were going to pull rabbits, iguanas, or some other strange, unexpected creatures out of the therapy hat. We watched as the clients they worked with changed before our eyes—becoming more alive, more open with one another, and more inventive in resolving their own problems.
Take a few minutes to experience one of these transformations in this classic video of Virginia Satir at work. It includes some introductory remarks by Steve Andreas, author of Virginia Satir: The Patterns of Her Magic
, so you’ll know exactly what to watch for in the clip.
As you can see, Satir’s work has a quality of aliveness that is the fruit of her creativity and authenticity, and it has an energy and emotional ease that we’d all like to have more of in our practices.
We’ve received many requests from therapists like you for more video demonstrations and information about master therapists and their approach to practicing the craft of psychotherapy.
To give you even more insight, we’re passing along an interview I did with Virginia Satir a few years before she died. It was part of the 1989 Virginia Satir memorial issue of Psychotherapy Networker
. The interview was first published in Common Boundary
, a journal concerned with the links between psychotherapy and spirituality. It provides an unusually crystallized discussion of the beliefs that lay at the heart of Satir's views about the art of therapy.
This interview is free and yours to keep forever.Get your downloadable PDF of my interview with Virginia Satir here.