One of the beauties of psychodynamic understanding is that it can be used to underpin the employment of a wide variety of techniques. Psychodynamic counselling itself uses techniques that have their roots in psychotherapy and psychoanalysis, and these will be described below, but a psychodynamically informed practitioner can also harness his or her understanding to the effective employment of many other kinds of intervention. The psychodynamic theoretical framework provides a way of perceiving the deeper levels of what is going on within and between people, and of how someone is experiencing themselves in relation to others. It can then guide us in our choices, even if we are not in a setting where psychodynamic counselling itself would be appropriate (Clare Winnicott 1955; Dyke 1984). For example, a teacher or social worker has a different role from that of a counsellor, but she can still use her psychodynamic understanding to help her respond to what is really going on in the child, rather than react to the surface manifestations. A practitioner who is using cognitive behavioural techniques or offering problem-solving strategies is going to be much better equipped to devise useful interventions if they are in touch with the underlying communications in children’s behaviour or ways of relating.
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