Michelle Ritterman, PhD

Trance and Deliver: Recognizing and Utilizing Your Subjective Sense of Time

For me, creating changes in the subjective perception of time was Erickson's most important contribution to the field. It is the great key to a broader understanding of states of consciousness other than those associated with the analytic mind. Why? When clients come to us, they have often maxed out on their ability to analyze a situation. They are caught in conflicting or paralyzing subjective interpretations of interactions and events. When we as therapists learn to "STOP THE CLOCK" on their narratives and interactions and teach them how to enter into subjective time, many of the ideas they operate from as an unconscious template for a narrow range of responses, can shift. They may then be available for experimentation with stances, responses that are in their own natural repetoir of behaviors, but underutilized.

This presentation will demonstrate some of the powers of subjective time. You will learn to shift mental focus and "stop the clock" so that you can utilize your trances to attain a useful stance for whatever it is that you need to do. And you will learn to do so quickly - our modern world demands no less - you will use three minute egg-timers to see how much you can shift your mental state in only 3-6 minutes of clock time.

Michelle Ritterman, PhD. For many Ericksonians, Michelle Ritterman needs no introduction. One of Milton Erickson's leading students, she has trained thousands of psychotherapists around the globe in her approach to working with couples and families. In her work, she demonstrates how to work with shared and separate-track trances in family and couple interactions and has pioneered the idea of "therapeutic counter inductions."

Therapeutic counter inductions directly result from Michelle's concept of the symptom as a trance state that is actually suggested by various people and social structures. From this basic concept (that Erickson himself admired) she frames therapy as the production of COUNTER-INDUCTIONS, hypnotic SEQUENCES that impact the symptom trance. Diagnoses are rarely useful after induced symptoms have been treated.

Dr. Ritterman is a prolific author whose work has been translated into many languages. Her book, Hope Under Siege,(1986), with a foreword by Isabel Allende, considers the applications of psychotherapeutic principles in the larger context of political and social reality. Her latest published book The Tao of a Woman (2009) is a tool for us to carry with us to move from the symptom trance to the healing stance.

Her book in progress: From Trance to Stance, is her latest understanding in a therapy of shifts, as occur in martial arts, instead of labels of people and visions of individuals as damaged as opposed to wonderful, unique works in progress, like Michelangelo's Prigioneri series. WE ARE ALL WORKS IN PROGRESS! The goal of psychology is to help create a HUMAN FRIENDLY SOCIETY that caters to the bio-rhythms and other real and natural needs of the human organism.