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Title: Is time of the essence? : experiential accounts from clients of time-limited existential therapy at an HIV counselling service
Author: Lamont, Neil
ISNI:       0000 0004 5360 9936
Awarding Body: Middlesex University/New School of Psychotherapy and Counselling
Current Institution: Middlesex University
Date of Award: 2015
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This was an idiographic investigation capturing the first-hand experiential accounts of four participants who had recently received existential time-limited therapy (ETLT) at a counselling service for people affected by HIV. To date there has been little research of ETLT practice which is particularly notable since major service providers are increasingly offering only time-limited contracts, reflective of pervasive resource constraints. Further, this research was conducted at a time when we are witnessing the increasing homogenisation of counselling psychology; a profession characterised by an embrace of pluralism. As such, the research aim was to further develop our knowledge of ETLT and so also understand what, if anything, it can contribute to the wider counselling psychology discipline. I conducted two semi-structured interviews with four participants, all of whom had completed twelve weeks of ETLT. First interviews were conducted immediately after the therapy ended and the subsequent follow-up interviews twelve weeks later. The data was analysed using Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (Smith, 1996), a method which facilitates a hermeneutic phenomenological inquiry into the unique individual experience as well as commonalities between participants. Main themes reflected presenting issues and objectives; how the ETLT was actually experienced; and therapeutic outcomes. All approached therapy reporting a profound sense of isolation, low self-worth, and general sense of unacceptability. ETLT was experienced as an actively relational, affirming and enabling approach and was reported as being highly attuned to participant needs and objectives. Pivotal to this was the client-practitioner relationship and the associated development of a trusting collaborative alliance. Also important was the time-limited setting itself which was shown to instil energy and pace to sessions as well as encourage client responsibility for their ongoing personal process. For these reasons, the primary contribution to our field from this research is that ETLT has been shown to be especially effective and viable therapy option for attending to profound relational unease and engendering a more purposeful engagement with life.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Clin.Psy.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available