The Power of the Immediate Moment in Gestalt Therapy


This article discusses the gestalt therapy concept of the paradoxical theory of change and a method combining a dialogic relationship with active phenomenological focusing and experimenting. Fundamental change results from self-acceptance and not attempts to change based on self-rejection. This is supported by the characteristics of dialogic contact: inclusion, confirmation, authentic presence, and a commitment to what emerges between therapist and patient. The patient is taught how to be aware, including awareness of the awareness process, facilitating autonomous use of the method by the patient. Suggestions and cautions for practice are discussed.

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Correspondence to Gary Yontef.

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My thanks to Lynne Jacobs for help in writing this article

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Yontef, G. The Power of the Immediate Moment in Gestalt Therapy. J Contemp Psychother 37, 17–23 (2007).

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  • Gestalt therapy
  • Self-acceptance
  • Awareness
  • Dialogue
  • Present moment