Who we are
Winnipeg Narrative Therapy
Winnipeg Narrative Therapy is a counselling, professional development and training organization established in our community in 2005.
Since then we have provided counselling to individuals (adults, adolescents and children) as well as groups and couples that are experiencing a variety of problems in their lives. Our understanding of people’s experiences with problems is relational, meaning that we believe that people are in relationship with their problems, and therefore we become influenced by these problems in our everyday lives.
Narrative Therapy invites us to think of the problem as separate from the person: “the person is not the problem; the problem is the problem”. Problems can attempt to totalize our experiences, and by doing so endeavor to make us believe that they are at the centre of our identity, forming what we call ‘problem saturated identity’. We call ourselves depressed, anxious, unfocused etc., and by doing so we internalize and privatize the problem as “who we are”.
We believe that life is multi-storied and multi-located. Throughout our conversations with people we seek to bring forward people’s knowledge, we explore the many influences people have on the life of the problem, calling them “exceptions”. These exceptions to the “problem story” are composed by all those times the problem invited us to act in certain ways but we did not (Would the problem be upset if we didn’t do its way??).
By bringing forward all the exceptions that the “problem” has pushed to the shadows for so long, we invite people to begin to create new narratives about their lives, and to re-remember their preferred identity and liberate themselves from the constricted definition of themselves that the problem has offered to them.
This is a collaborative and non-pathologizing approach that has the person that has consulted us at the centre of our work. Our conversations are always attuned to the person’s social contexts, such as gender, race, class, sexual orientation, etc. and how these variables determine and influence the stories that they live by.
While also providing cutting edge therapeutic services we also bring great trainers and colleagues to Winnipeg that help us advance our skills levels, challenge our thinking, which help us to provide the best possible services to the people that we work with.
Some of the people we had the pleasure to host in Winnipeg for cutting edge training are:
David Epston, Stephen Madigan, Alan Jenkins, Bill Madsen, Johnella Bird, Cheryl White, David Denborough, Charles Waldegrave and Taimalieutu Kiwi Tamasese (Just Therapy Team), Ken Hardy, John Winslade, Loraine Hedke, David Nylund, Julie Tylsen, Tod Augusta Scott, Marie Natalie Beaudoin and Victoria Dickerson.
Another aspect that makes our workshops special is the idea of connection. In this field, it is very easy to get disconnected and feel lost in the loneliness of our offices. We privilege in all of our events the sense of connection, and sometimes facilitate informal meetings to debrief the workshop and discuss how it might change and enrich our work.
Let’s work together! Send us an email to get started. We are looking forward to meeting you.