In this module participants will learn the theory and techniques of PBSP MicroTracking using Witness and Voice Figures and have the opportunity to experience and practice that technique as well.
Present consciousness is a tapestry woven out of threads of memory. With the PBSP MicroTracking technique one can help clients discover the history and foundations of present consciousness and their emotional states and behavior. PBSP MicroTracking is akin to mindfulness in that it helps clients become more conscious of and gain perspective about how they feel and think without being so immersed in those states. It also reinforces the therapeutic alliance and a produces a sense of gratitude toward the therapist without it resulting in having the therapist become the healer of the events of the past. Thus, a secondary benefit of this technique is that it reduces the incidence of transference.
MicroTracking. Participants will learn how to distinguish between affective states and cognitive states. Participants will learn to listen not only to the client’s words, but to watch and give names to varying emotional states that show up in their facial expressions and vocal tone. The emotional naming words give clothing to the emotional states and make them more manageable. In addition, participants will learn how to state back to clients (as if coming from another party outside and not from the therapist themselves) their statements of life strategies and values in a way that makes them sound like absolute truths and declarative imperative statements. They will learn to do so without adding their own insight or interpretation.
Witness Figures. Participants will learn when and how to posit the notion of a third person in the room who functions as a caring benign witness who gives names and adds context to the client’s state of mind and emotions using the precise words that the client has expressed as they feel those emotions. The witness figure performs a role similar to a mother who gives language (and, thereby, ego wrapping) to a child’s state of mind. The therapist will learn how to talk as if they are narrating what the witness figure says. Since the client’s emotions have been named and put into context benignly by the Witness Figure, those feelings become less overwhelming and the client has the sense that they aren’t infinite and can be handled.
Voice Figures. Participants will learn to identify when clients are discussing life strategies and values and to utilize PBSP Voice Figures. Voice Figures are not benign and caring like the Witness Figure and are used to announce back to clients in a declarative or imperative way the attitudes, strategies, and values that clients have accumulated through life experience. Hearing it from the outside helps clients learn that these are not absolute and that they can be questioned and changed. Those values are often at odds with genetic expectations of how the world should be and are often not positive or healthy. However, clients have learned that these rules were necessary in dealing with the world as the found it. In narrating the Voice Figures participants will learn to use a declarative tonality, like a voice of truth, a voice of warning about coming negative consequences, or like a punishing judging condemnation. By hearing their attitudes reflected back through the Voice Figure clients can become aware of the history that initially produced those convictions. With this new information they will able to address the root causes which can be dealt with by their therapists using PBSP Making New Memories technique or through other means.