Interdependent Supervisors Network

At the ISN Conference 30 Nov 2019

Thanks to all who came along to the recent ISN Conference

Approximately 18 people attended.  

The morning was held by Robin Shohet and Phil Turner and the afternoon by Steve Mepsted.  We started the day breaking into pairs and sharing a ‘sparkling’ moment at work. This is an excellent exercise for putting people in touch with their strengths and creating connection and relationship.

After hearing from some of the participants we moved into an appreciative inquiry of supervision, again in pairs for 20 minutes each way.

The appreciative inquiry form used in the session led by Robin can be downloaded HERE

We spent some time writing on sticky notes asking what brought us here and wrote this up on a flip chart. unnamed

After a tea and cake break, we looked at the theme of projective identification and Brexit and what the political climate had brought up for people in terms of their psychology and their ancestral history.






The afternoon was presented by Steve Mepsted (who manages the website)

Steve led a session which initially encouraged participants to think about a topic or issue of current interest and to share this with a partner. After the session participants were asked to consider submitting a piece of writing for inclusion on the ISN website as a blog post.

Steve explained how blog posts are the main tool for driving traffic to a website and therefore generating interest in the work of ISN

His presentation showed 10 ways to think about this task and hopefully make it a fun exercise to engage in while diversifying the type of posts that could be written on any given topic.

Steve’s slides are included HERE 

It was suggested that we include a page for individuals who are looking for a group, or another to form a dyad. This will be discussed further with a view to implementation soon.

Welcome to the ISN Blog

Welcome to all supervisors, psychotherapists, counsellors, coaches, mentors, managers and all those that are passionate about and hold a responsibility for their own and other peoples’ well-being at work, the well-being of the organisation in which they work and the society in which that work operates. This blog is here to share ideas and inspiration, articles and news. Please feel free to contribute and share.

My Favourite Books on Therapy

This is a personal list (obviously). I originally intended to start with my top ten, but the list just grew. I would be interested in others’ favourites. Robin Shohet 

Early influences.

Mostly 60’s and early 70’s.  I still think they might have something to offer

  1. If You Meet the Buddha on the Road, Kill Him. Sheldon Kopp. In the mid-seventies, when I was new to therapy, I remember the sense of excitement in reading this classic. I think it stands the test of time.
  2. Uncommon Therapy. Jay Haley. Ditto. Describes the work of one of the geniuses of the therapy world, Milton Erikson.
  3. Impro. Keith Johnston. A pioneer in the world of improvisation drama which I think is one of the best trainings for a therapist in that it combines combining, spontaneity, imagination with shrewd insights as to what blocks us.
  4. King Lear. William Shakespeare. Brilliant. From school I was so resistant to Shakespeare, but this play broke through all prejudice.
  5. Summerhill. A.S. Neill.  My first therapy book – describing his experimental school where pupils were allowed to choose whether they attended lessons.  A huge influence on my ways of thinking
  6. You are not the Target.  Laura Huxley.  Another remnant from the sixties, a prelude to the growth movement.  Exercises to expand consciousness from Aldous Huxley’s wife
  7. Doors of Perception. Aldous Huxley.  You can see my interest in drugs for expanding awareness.  A classic that belongs to a different era.
  8. The Divided Self. R.D. Laing.  A classic for those of us around in the late 60’s and looking for alternative ways other than conventional psychiatry.
  9. The Dice Man. Luke Reinheart. A psychiatrist decides to live his life according to the throw of a dice. I have been inspired to take risks by surrendering to the throw of a dice.
  10. Myself and I. Constance Newland. A fascinating account of a cure by LSD written about 50 years ago.  A very important book for me in the 60’s when I was studying psychology to give me the courage to challenge the system.
  11. Mister God This is Anna. Flynn. A moving tale of a relationship between a man in his thirties and a young girl who together explore the meaning of life. Describing the East End of London pre second world war, it takes you to an age of innocence as well as the incredible wisdom of little Anna.
  12. Dream Power. Anne Faraday. A book that made working with dreams accessible and took it out of the analytic field.

Later Influences.

  1. The Third Reich of Dreams. Charlotte Beradt. Discovered when researching for my book on dreams. The author collects dreams from Nazi Germany 1933-39 and we see how the unconscious wish to conform and belong contributes to the rise of Nazi Germany.
  2. Foundations of Psychohistory. Lloyd de Mause. Connects world events with the world of therapy in a very compelling way, particularly looking at birth trauma. Both this and Beradt’s book shed light on what might otherwise be incomprehensible world events.
  3. Realms of the Human Unconscious. Stanislas Grof.  Using LSD, Grof looks at the nature of consciousness including the effect of different stages of birth.
  4. How Can I Help? Ram Dass. A close look at the dynamics of helping and the ruthless honesty needed to be of help and the self deception that can fool us into thinking we are helping.
  5. Collected Papers on Schizophrenia. Harold Searles.  Written in the 50’s, original papers on psychoanalysis, including the first one to write about parallel process in supervision.
  6. Shakespeare Comes to Broadmoor ed Murray Cox.. A spellbinding account of bringing plays like Lear, Hamlet to Broadmoor and how the inmates and the actors interacted with so much intuitive understanding of the plays.
  7. Love’s Executioner. Irvin Yalom. No-one for me matches Yalom’s ability to tell stories of psychotherapy.
  8. The Blind Side of Eden. Carol Lee. A refreshing perspective on male/female relationships sympathetic to both sexes.

On Writing.

  1. Writing Down the Bones. A classic on writing influenced by her Zen Master. She sees  writing as a form of spiritual practice.
  2. Writing Your Life. Deena Metzger.   I have a personal interest in writing for self discovery and this is one of the books I enjoyed most.

Non-duality, a Course in Miracles – general heading of spirituality.

  1. The Course in Miracles. Urtext.  This channeled book (the Urtext is the clearest version) has so much wisdom and this too has influenced me hugely.
  2. The Disappearance of the Universe. Gary Renard. It seems strange to include the work of a man who quite frankly I did not take to, but much of this book goes into depth around the teachings in A Course in Miracles in a way I found very useful.
  3. The Work of Byron Katie. Any youtube clips. She challenges us to keep inquiring about some of our deepest held beliefs.  I have used her four questions and the turnaround both in my personal life and in my teaching. The can blow your mind which is what they are designed to do.
  4. The Untethered Soul. Michael Singer. Written with great clarity, shines a light on who we are and the defences we erect to deny our true nature.
  5. I Heard God Laughing. Poems of Hafiz. A complete and utter joy to read the works of this 14C Persian poet.

Most Recent.

  1. In Treatment. A DVD series of a therapist and his clients brilliantly acted by Gabriel Byrne with a very good script.  Addictive as well as instructive.
  2. The Art of Possibility. Ben Zander.  Does what it says on the tin.  Encourages us to think that with the right attitude anything is possible.  Zander is a conductor and this and his youtube clips shows how he inspires his  music students.
  3. The Inner World of Trauma. Donald Kalsched.  A brilliant exposition of how trauma is so difficult to treat from a Jungian Analyst.
  4. The Body Keeps the Score. Ditto with lots of practical suggestions.
  5. A Stroke of Insight. Jill Bolte Taylor. The author had a stroke and her recovery sheds light on the left/right hemisphere, the former corresponding to what is commonly called the ego. Also on a Ted Talk.
  6. Wilful Blindness. Margaret Heffernan. Another book that sheds some light on what might otherwise be considered inexplicable behaviour.
  7. Love’s Hidden Symmetry. Bert Hellinger. The Founder  of constellation work.  Always good to go to source.
  8. The Forgiveness Project. Marina Cantacuzino. The author has collected remarkable stories of forgiveness and put them together in a very powerful way.
  9. Intelligent Kindness. John Ballatt and Penelope Campling. A kind and intelligent book on helping to create a different culture in the NHS.
  10. The Music of Madness. Ivor Brown. An Irish psychiatrist in his 80’s describes his life. Fascinating, including descriptions of the therapeutic community movement in the 70’s. A lovely section on group dynamics which I use for teaching.
  11. The Thin Book of Appreciative Inquiry. Sue Annis Hammond. I have used appreciative inquiry very successfully with teams and organisations and this little book is an excellent introduction.

Robin Shohet

Seeking a Group 1

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Seeking a Group 2

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Jochen Encke

Over 40 years in the field have changed me a lot and I increasingly feel less inclined to describe what I do as “psychotherapy”.

What I offer is a space in which together we can explore who we are when not boxed in by our stories and emotions.

Contact Jochen using the form below:





Chamari Leelasena

I am an integrative Counsellor / Psychotherapist in private practice. I am a Certified Clinical Supervisor working with counselling therapists and those working in other mental health settings.

My particular interests are working with Trauma resolution, holistic approaches to understanding and addressing anxiety and depression. Currently familiarising with Polyvagal system and Trauma’s effect on the nervous system response.

Face to face sessions are in Wembley and Harley Street practices, while on-line sessions are provided via Skype and Zoom.

Chamari’s Website:

Find Self Counselling 

You may contact Chamari using the form below:

Mobile: 07872 953 061


Lynn Walters

Lynn Walters, black therapist

Although my initial therapeutic training was psychodynamic, since qualifying in 2007, I have had additional training in other modalities to enhance my knowledge and practice.  As a qualified supervisor (2013) I have worked with individuals and groups, either independently or via organisations.  My work is integrative and my experience has been with qualified as well as trainee counsellors/psychotherapists, covering different issues within time-limited and open-ended sessions.

You may contact Lynn using the form below

Mobile: 07930381064

Kris Black

I am Kris Black (I use they/them pronouns). I am an Integrative Arts Psychotherapist, Child and Adolescent Therapeutic Counsellor, CSTD trained supervisor in Individual and group supervision. I work using an Intersectional framework and lens, when I’m not working clinically with clients and supervisees, I enjoy training therapists and counsellors as an Independent Trainer – via Radical Dialogues which I founded.

I am a clinical associate of Pink Therapy and ex leadership Associate of BAATN – both organisations work within the marginalised communities that i’m part of –  they share my values, and perspectives on working respectfully with issues of difference and diversity. I work within both the LGBTQIA / QTIPOC and the Black African, Asian and Caribbean communities. I am registered with UKCP and BACP, and I’m a member of FSN, PCU and PCSR which reflects my political commitment as a psychotherapist and supervisor. I’m proud to be a Black Issues Masterclass graduate (1st class).

Find Kris via these links:

Arc Therapy

Pink Therapy

Baatn UK

The Free Psychotherapy Network

LinkedIn Kris Black

You may contact Kris using the form below:

Call or Text: 07761371088 

Ben Fuchs

Ben Fuchs is an organisational development consultant. His work is mainly focused on leadership development and culture change in the NHS. He is on the faculty of the Centre for Supervision and Team Development, with an interest in supervision in teams and organisations.

Contact Ben using the form below:

Robin Shohet

Robin Shohet trains supervisors through the Centre for Supervision and Team Development (CSTD London) which he co-founded in 1979. He has written extensively on supervision and his next book ‘In Love with Supervision. Transformative Conversations’ which he has written with his wife, Joan Wilmot, will come out in 2020.

Now that he no longer plays football, his main leisure activities are learning the accordion and improvisation drama

Contact Robin using the form below: