IoPT (Identity-oriented Psychotrauma Theory) and its practical tool, The Intention Method, were developed out of Family Constellation Work by Professor Franz Ruppert of Germany. Both are therapeutic methods that approach problems experienced on an individual level from the perspective of the individual's place in a larger context -- that of the family and of one's larger cultural environment. Individuals are recognized as parts of dynamic and complex systems which respond to everything that has occurred within that system. Just as, in a hanging mobile, a force placed on one part will impact every other part.
Both Family Constellation Work and IoPT help individuals to identify dynamics within the family system (oftentimes previously hidden) that may be adversely impacting them, see things from new perspectives, and take steps toward healing and resolution. Family Constellation Work focuses primarily on revealing hidden dynamics between members of a family system and, through representation of those members using participants within a group workshop or even objects on a tabletop, allows insight into the source of a client's difficulty as well as an opportunity for the client to experience a profound shift in how they feel and live going forward.
IoPT, while still holding an eye on events and circumstances that have occurred within the family system, focuses on how those events and circumstances have been internalized within the client's psyche. It holds that the psyche's response to trauma is to split, whether it be trauma directly experienced by a client or unhealed trauma that has trickled down from somewhere else in the family system. A traumatized part that holds the memory and emotions of the trauma splits off and a survival part (with strategies such as avoidance, dissociation, controlling behaviors, addictions, etc.) develops in order to make sure the trauma is not experienced again. It is a natural protective measure in the absence of an opportunity for an immediate healing response, and all humans, to one degree or another, have splits. That said, it's essential to remember that, in addition to the traumatized and survival parts, humans retain a healthy part. The balance of those parts shifts throughout our lives and even throughout a day.
The goal of IoPT is to provide an opportunity for a client to safely and gently gain insight into their splits with the ultimate goal of being able to integrate the traumatized parts. This integration renders the survival parts, which preclude health and vitality, unnecessary, and allows the client to embrace the life-enhancing potential and energy that were sequestered when the traumatized part split off.
I began studying and practicing Family Constellation Work in 2009 and, in 2014, shifted to IoPT. I now only practice IoPT because of the incredible potential I have observed and personally experienced for it to bring about profound shifts in how one lives after having experienced traumas very early in life -- even at conception or in utero. Even when a client comes with an issue that is not clearly linked to trauma, this method is very effective in revealing whatever is keeping the client from moving forward.
There is nothing more beautiful than to reconnect with one's innocence, worthiness, and desire to truly live, and The Intention Method offers a gentle and safe container in which this reconnection can take place.
To read more about how The Intention Method is carried out, click here.
To watch The Intention Method in action (facilitated by Dr. Franz Ruppert), click here.