The Art of Self-Supervision
Studying the link between
self-reflection and self-care
by Laurie Ponsford-Hill
GENRE: Self-help, Non-fiction
At last, the field of relational therapy has a technique for the art of self-supervision. Everyone agrees that supervision is essential, however the ultimate goal of supervision is to provide a tool beyond supervision for self-supervision. This book captures the primary ingredients of self-supervision and proves the link between self-reflection and self-care. No matter where you are on your journey as a professional, The Art of Self-Supervision: Studying the link between self-reflection and self-care will lead you to a process to tune into your own expert guidance and a greater capacity to help yourself.
Building on the importance of self-care, this section explores the benefits of using art as a means for self-exploration.
Malchiodi (2007) and C. H. Moon (2002) observe that art-making promotes self-understanding and self-awareness and is a useful means for the art therapist to maintain authenticity. In her discussion of the self-portrait, Malchiodi (2007) refers to the self-portrait of an art therapist, Don Jones, as an example of a portrait that precisely captures the essence of “drawing from within” (p. 4). She underscores the importance of setting the stage, describing this as a significant part of the creative process when making art for self-exploration. When art is used for self-exploration, the art: reveals conflictual, difficult and/or ineffectual elements in the artist’s life; identifies positive themes in the artist’s story; indicates growth, improvements in self-understanding and self-appreciation; and increases meaning in the lived experience.
Janson (1986) states that in the visual arts, “We might say that a work of art must be a tangible thing shaped by human hands” (p. 11). Like Bruce L. Moon (1995; 1997) and Jennifer A. Moon (1999), Janson (1986) indicates that “The creative process consists of a long series of leaps of the artist’s imagination and his attempts to give them form by shaping the material accordingly” (p. 11). Bruce L. Moon (1997) observes that the mastery of process and media are as important to the artistic process as the use of imagination and creativity, and links mastery to self-discipline and self-regard. Rogers (1959) indicates that self-discipline and self-regard are necessary for the therapist to be in a therapeutic relationship with self. For purposes of this research, self-discipline refers to being in control of oneself, while self-regard relates to self-esteem and consideration of one’s own interests. Self-reflection is the act of thinking on experience with careful consideration and practicingself-reflection requires the individual to observe and/or be mindful of experience (B. L. Moon, 1997; Rogers, 1959). Art provides a means for self-discipline and is important to the maintenance of art within therapy for the art therapist.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Laurie earned a Master of Divinity degree, and directed her work towards pastoral care, later earning a Master of Counselling Psychology degree and furthering her Registrations to that of Psychotherapist, Marriage and Family Therapist, Social Worker, and Art Therapist. Her career led her to a greater understanding about herself and her relationships. Laurie continued to broaden her education and went on to complete a doctoral program in Human Relationships at Wilfrid Laurier University, Waterloo Lutheran Seminary.
Laurie feels fortunate to have attained balance in her work and home life and empathizes with many others engaged in their own personal struggles to attain balance. She has dedicated her career towards helping others on that journey, designing the Self-Supervision program, which was meticulously tested in this clinical research study. The Art of Self-Supervision: Studying the link between self-supervision and self-care chronicles the remarkable findings of this study: that professionals can overcome burnout and improve their health and life balance by focusing on their self-portrait.
Laurie is currently the Clinical Director and Supervisor at The Counselling House, in both London and Woodstock, Ontario, an agency that focuses on the supervision of counselling interns and newly graduated therapists, and their development of self-supervision. Laurie maintains a private consulting practice specializing in the development of maintaining healthy relationships with self, work, home, others, God, and the world.
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