Interact Journal Integrative Ideas for the Process-Oriented Psychotherapist

Categories Process Model Concepts

Positive Attitude Towards Learning

We invite you to consider the following concepts in your approach to being a student at PTI.


Begin to think of all incoming information as neutral. Consider information as an invitation and perceive it all as valuable to you. An example I think of comes from the 1986 movie Short Circuit, where a newly liberated robot craves input. He proceeds to devour all information available. His intake of information is, in itself, his joy.

Knowing (Truth)

The deepest degree of knowing lies within each of us. It is as if we have an inner guidance system that evaluates incoming information and determines which input is consistent with who we are and which input is not. This guidance system involves more than just the cognitive mind or our physical body. It also makes use of that place of trust in each of us where no doubt exists.

When we act on information from a place of knowing, we cannot be wrong. We may err, but if we are paying attention when we make the mistake, the mistake simply becomes more information, and often turns out to be the best thing to have done at the time.


Knowing where information comes from is irrelevant. It comes from everywhere. The truth or helpfulness of the information is in no way connected to where it comes from. For example, the information that the world is coming to an end when screamed by a raggedly dressed man on the street, read in a prophecy written thousands of years ago, or announced by a scientist with empirical evidence is still the same information. Rather than consider the source to determine the truth of any information, I invite you to process the input thorough your inner guidance system to determine its validity and its degree of usefulness to you.


  • I invite you to funnel all information you encounter through your inner guidance system and focus on the internal feedback you receive from it.
  • If the input seems consistent with your experience, if it brings excitement or joy to receive it, then embrace it and add it to yourself.
  • If you experience doubt or skepticism in response to certain input, allow that input to challenge you, your way of thinking, and the way you live your life. Let it stretch your beliefs so that in the end you feel even more confident in your original stance or perhaps have a greater and expanded stance.
  • If your internal feedback to certain input is clearly negative, trust yourself completely. Allow that input to pass you by and continue to find information that is in harmony with who you really are.
  • In all three instances I invite you to appreciate input, because, with your permission, it expands you, challenges you, and confirms you.


I’m thinking right now of an old James Stewart movie. (You’ve probably figured out that I’m a movie fan.) The James Stewart character is standing in the rain out in front of a government building holding a sign of protest. A man rushes by him and says, “What are you trying to do, change the world?” James replies, “No, I’m trying to keep the world from changing me.”

The perspective I am offering here will not help you to change the world. It will probably be just about the same as it was when you started. Nor will this perspective change things and people external to ourselves. It is true that as you become more connected to your inner self, your perceptions of the external world may change for you. And since the external world is a reflection of our internal self, to that degree of change it will be different for us. It is not the goal here to change others or to change the world for others.

You are invited to make changes in yourself (myself, ourselves). Your changes will encourage the perspective that improving the quality of our lives depends on us and us alone. And as each of us expands and lives a more connected life, others may use their response to us to inspire themselves to change also.

2 thoughts on “Positive Attitude Towards Learning”

  1. I enjoyed reading Positive Attitude Toward Therapy. I felt I could identify with it as the reasonable way to do therapy. I’m a postdoc, graduated from Saybrook University 2013. I would like to talk to you about doing a psych internship with you.

    1. Pratibha-

      Thank you for your kind comments. I have passed your info on to our enrollment coordinator. You should hear from her soon.


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