skip to Main Content
For the latest information on COVID-19 for therapy clients and visitors, please download this PDF (last updated 24 Feb 22)
Loading Events
Loading Events

« All Events

How to be a Bad Therapist: reimagining how to work – online event with Allison Priestman

March 18, 2023 @ 10:00 am-4:00 pm

£95 – £105

Professional Training (CPD) for Therapists and Health Professionals

Live ONLINE-ONLY event with full interaction/participation

How to be a bad therapist
Hellebores; growing into your shape rather than being moulded

How to be a Bad Therapist

Deconstructing the ‘rules’ of our profession, reimagining how to work with integrity and creativity

Are the injunctions that we are taught on our trainings fit for practice? How do we sift through the ‘rules’ of the Therapy World to ensure that we are not working from fear or defensiveness?

On this workshop we hope:-
“to bring some fresh air into the discourse about what makes a good or bad therapist and to offer some redefinitions of therapy. We suggest that therapy isn’t an expert knowledge system, open to being standardised and manualised, but is more akin to local, indigenous, embodied and relational forms of knowledge…. We are interested in questioning who sets the rules? Are the rules and expectations of how to be a good therapist the most helpful ones? In the search for high standards and protection of the client, has something been lost?“
– From How to be a Bad Therapist, by Nick Totton and Allison Priestman 2021.

Therapy can be a messy, awkward and unknowable process, and we therefore wish to explore how we can best prepare ourselves for the reality of working in a demanding and unpredictable profession. Allison Priestman will offer a relational model of working, exploring how to embrace our embodied responses to our clients, as an integral part of the therapeutic process. This will be an interactive and experiential, day-long workshop. Practitioners will be supported to work with integrity and creativity through group discussion, experiential exercises and supervision space. This workshop has grown out of both the How to be a bad therapist webinar series and the book, that Allison co-led and then co-wrote with Nick Totton.

Attention will be given to:

  • How to question rather than be cowed by our internalised therapy police.
  • How to utilise our embodied responses to our clients.
  • Supporting courageous self reflection, for those times when we need to act contrary to the dictates of ‘Therapy World’.
  • Creating a community of practitioners on the workshop.
  • Offering thoughtful alternative models and definitions of therapy.
  • Encouraging you, if you wish, to step into being a ‘bad’ therapist.

About Allison Priestman

Allison Priestman has been working as an Embodied-Relational Therapist for over 20 years and as a trainer for almost fifteen. She is a member of the Embodied-Relational Therapy training team and has worked extensively with Nick Totton. She is a professional member of the European Association for Body Psychotherapy and the UKAHPP. Allison has a particular interest in the meeting place between relational, embodied and wild ways of working, and is continually being woken up, challenged and nourished by her contact with clients, supervisees and trainees. At this time of climate, diversity and equality crises, she is interested in being part of a collective understanding of their interwoven causes; being part of a collective search for a way forward.

Watch one of her short informative teaching videos:

For more information on Allison Priestman’s work visit

Reviews of ‘How to be a Bad Therapist’, by Nick Totton and Allison Priestman:

“Clarity, wisdom and depth – all rolled into one engaging and thought-provoking book.”
– Mat

“Lucidly clear writing that covers many important theraputic and human territories. Allison and Nick unpack the varied influences on how we ‘try’ to ‘do’ therapy and offer us an insight into the profound inter-relationality of this work. Their book touches upon the ethics, power dynamics, embodiment and wildness of the therapeutic encounter. It encourages us to unbind ourselves from a rigid adherance to rules and systems so that we can relax and meet more authentically to learn and grow together.”
-Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 27 May 2021

“A breath of fresh air.”
-Mr D

“I’ve been dipping into this book for a little while now, and I can imagine myself doing so for some time to come. In many ways it’s a breath of fresh air – I really appreciated the relaxed, accessible writing style of the authors, and I found the ideas and themes in the book inspiring, stimulating, challenging and affirming. I can see this book appealing to newly qualified therapists looking to find their own way in ‘Therapy World’, established therapists looking for new perspectives to enliven their practice, or just anyone interested in therapy, who has found conventional approaches stale or stifling.”
-Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 8 July 2021

Open to psychological therapists (including trainees) from all modalities and health professionals.

CPD certificates supplied. Refreshments and a light lunch will be supplied for in-person attendees (parking not included).

The vast majority of our professional CPD events are led by psychotherapists. Each delegate is responsible for self-care should material during the event trigger difficult personal feelings.

Location: Online only

Attend online

£95 before 18th Feb 2023

£105 from 18th Feb 2023

Buy now, pay later

Pay in 3 instalments with Paypal Pay in 3 during checkout.


Subject to eligibility with Paypal

Attend online

£95 early bird booking before 18th February 2023

£105 from 18th February 2023

Alternatively to book: email or phone 07599 369566 with the name of the event(s) you wish to attend plus the following information: your full name; postal address; best contact telephone number and job title.

Postal address for cheques: Wendy Bramham, 47C Kingsbury St, Marlborough SN8 1JE.
A confirmation and receipt will be emailed to you.


March 18, 2023
10:00 am-4:00 pm
£95 – £105


United Kingdom


Wendy Bramham
07599 369566