Philip views individual, couple or family issues in context. His systemic lens informs how any presenting problem is approached. What this can mean in practice is that Philip can negotiate collaboratively-formed confidentiality agreements enabling his consultations to include significant others in the system around an individual, couple or family. Philip has found this to be particularly useful when working with young people where it can sometimes be helpful and appropriate to include parents, siblings, schools, or even peer group, in the work. A couple can also be helped by eliciting the perspective of significant people around them. A family can often be helped by the support of the wider system. Philip believes that the nuclear family and individuals and couples can become unnecessarily isolated in the way our society has evolved. Helping build supportive networks and viewing our interdependence on each other is held in mind when Philip is collaboratively guiding conversations, interventions or ideas of difference.
When an individual is referred to Philip’s practice the presenting problem is assessed using not only this contextual, systemic lens, but also by viewing the individual as socially constructed over time. This means that Philip appreciates that the life-cycle and relationships build and reinforce aspects of a person, some of which can form into unhelpful patterns of thinking, others into recognisable character strengths. He works with an individual’s internal narratives to bring about a more fulfilling, helpful internal dialogue which leads to a deeper understanding of oneself and can open a more meaningful, purposeful chapter in a person’s life.