John Rowan – History As Therapist
John Rowan first started co-leading workshops in 1969 in a pioneering group called B Now. He co-led groups in 1971 at Centre 42 in Kensington, and then later in 1972 at the Kaleidoscope Centre in Swiss Cottage. During the period 1970-79 he studied with Bernard Gunther, Will Schutz, Elizabeth Mintz, Paul Lowe, Denny Yuson, John Adams, Al and Diane Pesso, James Elliott, Julian Silverman, John Pierrakos, Jay Stattman and others. In 1975 he learned co-counselling, practised it for five years, and later became a teacher of the Barefoot Psychoanalyst model. In 1978 he started his training with Bill Swartley in Primal Integration, which set the seal on his therapeutic initiation.
He helped to found, with Giora Doron in 1978, the Institute of Psychotherapy and Social Studies in Hampstead: when it became exclusively psychoanalytic he co-founded the Serpent Institute with Jocelyn Chaplin in 1989. This was a very exciting training centre in counselling and psychotherapy, based on a framework of Goddess spirituality, but it only lasted for four years. He then joined the Minster Centre, where he worked for ten years, training psychotherapists, leading seminars, experiential training groups and supervision groups.
In 2004 he left to work on his own Masterclasses and other workshops, as well as keeping up his private practice in North-East London.
Over the years he has given lectures and led workshops in the USA, Canada, Ireland, Norway, Sweden, Belgium, Holland, France, Spain, Switzerland, Germany, Austria, Lithuania, Estonia, Hungary, Italy, Lanzarote and Skyros, as well as many places within the UK. These have mostly been about work in the field of humanistic and transpersonal studies. He speaks French as well as English, and has led groups in Belgium, France and Switzerland.
Dr Rowan is a member of the BPS Special Group in Coaching Psychology, having attended the inaugural event in December 2004. He has been involved in individual and group coaching since 1985, and is a member of the Association for Coaching.
His approach is closely adjusted to the needs of the client, and he does not have a favourite package. Each person gets individual treatment, using a wide variety of helps. Coaching can be done on the telephone, though it is wise to have a face to face meeting to set this up and agree on the conditions.
Recently he has devoted more attention to the transpersonal aspect of coaching, using such approaches as the Ken Wilber model of the four quadrants each with a set of levels, the Peter Senge U-theory of descending into deeper levels of the psyche and coming back up again, the John Whitmore idea of using psychosynthesis methods such as imagery, the Pat Williams emphasis on far vision, the sacred self, creativity and openness, and the use of coaching koans, as well as his own work on the dialogical self, personification and I-positions. This means that even the more experienced and sophisticated client is met on a level which does justice to the whole person.
“One thing that comes out from all these transpersonal approaches is the marvel of creativity. I have been working on creativity since 1972, and have acquired an enormous respect for the way in which it is in everybody and just needs to be acknowledged and called upon. It can revolutionise a person’s estimate of what is possible. And we now know how to call upon it and engage with it. This is why I have enjoyed working with so many creative people over the years. Most people ignore, downgrade or simply do not recognise their own creativity, but we now know how to help it to emerge.”
In 2009 appeared his chapter on Transpersonal Coaching in the Sage Handbook of Coaching.
John Rowan is a qualified individual and group psychotherapist (UKAHPP and UKCP), a Chartered counseling psychologist (BPS) and an accredited counselor (BACP). He works in private practice in London.
He has a Ph.D from Middlesex University, is an Honorary Fellow of the United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy and a past member of its governing board, representing the Humanistic and Integrative Section.
He is a Fellow of the British Psychological Society (member of the Psychotherapy Section and the Counseling Psychology Division, the Counseling Psychology Division, the Transpersonal Psychology Section and the Consciousness and Experience Section).
He is also a Fellow of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy and a founding member of the Association of Humanistic Psychology Practitioners.
His most popular publication is Ordinary Ecstasy which was originally published in 1976 and is a summary and guide to all the branches of Humanistic psychology.