Individuation: Becoming who you are (April 2019)

“Individuation: Becoming who you are

Presenter: Deborah Bedford-Strohm

Date: Saturday, April 27, 2019

Time: 9AM – 4PM

Location: Denver Tech Area, 10 Inverness Drive East, 2nd Floor Conference Room,  Englewood, CO


One of the primary concepts developed by C. G. Jung concerning adult development is individuation. This is sometimes described as “becoming the person you are meant to be”, however, I prefer to speak of becoming the person you are.

In this workshop we will first take a walk around the many descriptions of the concept of individuation. Is it like the passage of a day from morning to night? Is it like a hero´s journey? Is it an alchemical passage from negredo to albedo to rubedo? Is it like a journey through the chakras? Is it simply a process of differentiation and integration? Are all of these just various descriptions of finding life from the potential wholeness which Jung called the Self?

Then we will look at many of the 35 sand plays done by Ruth on her therapeutic journey, which I was privileged to accompany and witness. I will do this along two themes: sex and aggression. In the interest of watching the process of individuation unfold, I would like to experiment by first looking at the process around becoming a woman with a vital sexuality, and second to look at the process around transforming a punitive parental complex and the role aggression plays here. Along the way, we will spend time approaching and responding to the sand plays with differing experiential elements: emotion, sound, language, perhaps even movement.

Learning objectives:

  • To gain an overview of the concept of individuation
  • To sharpen awareness of the effects of a punitive fundamentalist upbringing and hence the importance of transforming images of God and theological themes in therapy
  • To experience various ways of approaching interpretation of sandplay scenes

Deborah Bedford-Strohm was introduced to sandplay while studying for her Masters in San Francisco around 1985.

Sandplay never let her go, but it wasn´t until around 2000 that she started complete training in Germany, where she has had a private practice since 1990. Since becoming a teaching member of ISST in 2007, she has presented at three international conferences, published several articles in the Journal of Sandplay Therapy and currently teaches mainly in South Africa and Germany. 

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