What is the human givens approach?

The human givens approach combines the most effective forms of counselling and psychotherapy into a truly biopsychosocial approach. It draws on the best of CBT, NLP, person-centred, trauma-focused, solution-focused therapy.
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Incorporating therapeutic techniques, neuroscientific findings and newly devised interventions, human givens therapy focuses on achieving positive outcomes for clients as quickly as possible.

Psychologists Joe Griffin and Ivan Tyrrell, co-founders of the human givens approach, looked to the fundamental principles of what it means to be human to develop a simple, robust, scientifically up to date, coordinated and agreed biopsychosocial model of healthy human functioning – a shared language and a practical framework, upon which to build on an effective, integrated approach to emotional health, which truly understands us all as human beings with human needs.

Taking this scientific approach to psychology and psychotherapy, enabled them to develop many revolutionary new insights and understandings as shown below:

  • A comprehensive understanding of the crucial roles of dreaming and the REM state that is compatible with the latest scientific research
  • A first comprehensive, scientific explanation of clinical depression, how depression is manufactured in the brain and its psychical progression
  • A new understanding of what hypnosis is and why hypnotherapy is often so powerfully effective
  • A realistic model of psychosis and how to treat it
    • An effective approach for treating addictions based on a scientific understanding of the biological pathways in the brain, underlying all addictions and the addictive process, which helps control cravings
    • The discovery of molar memories, which is a memory with two connected emotional roots – one positive and one negative – which drives much compulsive and seemingly irrational behaviour
    • The context of caetextia (context blindness)

    How a human givens therapist can help

    Human givens therapist training ensures we have a sound body of scientifically based knowledge and the proven skills to help people as quickly as possible – both adults and children – with a wide range of emotional and behavioural difficulties.

    As a human givens therapist, I can help with the following:

    • Master anxiety – generalised anxiety, panic attacks, fears, phobias, obsessions, OCD, lack of confidence or overwhelming stress and pressure can be treated effectively
    • Break the cycle of depression – the human givens approach is the best available psychotherapeutic treatment for depression. Even chronic depression can be lifted quickly
    • Resolve trauma – dissolve the symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and complex PTSD, however severe and however long ago, safely, effectively, quickly and gently, without requiring you to disclose the trauma events in detail, and preventing further re-traumatisation from occurring
    • Manage anger – anger disorders damage health, increase the likelihood of an early death and cause enormous misery among relatives, colleagues and innocent bystanders
    • Stop addictive behaviour – the human givens approach can help free you from all forms of addiction such as alcohol, drugs, shopping, gambling, sex, TV and computer games, phone addictions and eating disorders
    • Relieve medical conditions – many conditions such as psoriasis, eczema, asthma, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), chronic pain and migraines all have an emotional component. Stressful events often trigger an outbreak because emotions affect health and vice versa
    • Help to improve relationships – relationship difficulties are often self-perpetuating because I believe some reactions to one another trigger patterns of behaviour, which stop us solving them. I can also help improve communication between parents and children or between siblings
    • Growing confidence, self-esteem or learning new skills – I can support you to build confidence in things like public speaking, taking exams, giving presentations, going for interviews, performing on stage, sporting performance or taking your driving test, for example. The human givens approach provides techniques to be able to help you improve your confidence in these settings, and go on to learn new skills feeling calm and confident.

    Effective counselling and psychotherapy checklist

    When choosing a psychotherapist or counsellor to work with, it’s a good idea to use the following checklist to protect yourself or someone you know from ineffective or even harmful types of counselling and psychotherapy.

    An effective psychotherapy or counsellor:

    • Knows how to build rapport quickly with distressed people
    • Understands depression and how to lift it
    • Helps immediately with anxiety problems, including trauma or fear-related symptoms
    • Is prepared to give advice if needed or asked for
    • Will not use jargon or psychobabble, or tell you that counselling or psychotherapy has to be painful
    • Will not dwell unduly on the past
    • Will be supportive when difficult feelings emerge but won’t encourage people to get emotional beyond their normal need to let go of any bottled-up feelings
    • May assist you to develop your social skills, so that your needs for affection, friendship, pleasure, intimacy and connection to the wider community can be better fulfilled
    • Will help you to draw and build on your own resources, which may prove greater than you thought
    • Will be considerate of the effects of counselling on the people close to you
    • May teach you to relax deeply
    • May help you think about your problems in new and empowering ways
    • Uses a wide range of techniques as appropriate
    • May ask you to complete tasks between sessions
    • Will take as few sessions as possible
    • Will increase your self-confidence and independence and make sure you feel better after every consultation

    Want to find out more?

    If you have any questions or want to find out more about the human givens approach, feel free to book a free, 15-minute call with me.