Steve Potter

Therapy with a Map


A Cognitive Analytic Approach to Helping Relationships

The book gets to the heart of psychotherapy by exploring how core relational processes work regardless of model, and by presenting innovative techniques for using reflection, time and visual conversation maps to maximize effectiveness and improve client outcomes.





Therapy with a Map – A Cognitive Analytic Approach to Helping Relationships

A therapeutic relationship is a web of interactions, tasks and processes in space and time. It is not easy to stay aware of the relationship in the thick of talking and trying to help someone, but doing so boosts flexibility and enables deeper formulation. A therapist who can be attentive not only to a specific therapeutic model, but also to relational factors underlying all therapy, has a far greater chance of enabling change. Building on thirty years of theory and practice in the field of Cognitive Analytic Therapy (CAT), yet speaking directly to practitioners across all schools of thought, Therapy with a Map sets out a therapeutic process of talking accompanied by visual conversation maps set down in real time on paper. By mapping these patterns of thinking and relating, therapists can help clients to develop self-understanding and solve problems, and to take away a freer, more self-aware relationship with themselves in the world.



Therapy with a Map will be useful to practitioners and trainees in Cognitive Analytic Therapy; practitioners and trainees in psychotherapy, counselling, mental health and across the helping professions, especially those aiming to work in integrative ways; practitioners whose work involves relational dynamics e.g. coaches, mentors, managers, nurses, teachers.




ISBN: 9781912755851
Publication: July 2020

Table of Contents:




  1. Conversational Mapping
  2. Relationship Mapping
  3. Narrative Mapping
  4. Process Mapping
  5. Learning to Map and Talk
  6. Writing and the therapeutic voice
  7. Relational awareness
  8. Relational healing
  9. Beginning therapy
  10. What to do in the middle of therapy
  11. Ending therapy


Steve Potter is a psychotherapist who teaches and supervises Cognitive Analytic Therapy (CAT) and its application to reflective practice in the UK and internationally. His central interest is in the co-creative process of relational mapping, and how it allows us to see and say things that otherwise might be too complex to hold in mind. He is co-editor of the International Journal of Cognitive Analytic Therapy and Relational Mental Health.



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