Annual Conference 2017

[Best_Wordpress_Gallery id=”5″ gal_title=”Naas 2017″]
Click on the photo to start slide-show!
There was a special buzz about the Annual Conference in Naas on Saturday 7th October last.  Participants were very aware that the last few years had been especially difficult but that WGII was now moving into a new era of optimism.  New structures and new approaches will be needed and WGII appeals to all its members to join forces in this task.


A recent refresher workshop in Dublin had shown the level of enthusiasm that is out there.  The conference programme speaks for itself (see below) and will give all a good idea of what was a very productive day.


Full credit to Arthur Dunne and his team for putting together this event on behalf of all our members and trainees.


Osprey Hotel, Naas.  Saturday 7th October 2017


Gerard Fitzpatrick


There are times in practically everyone’s life where they interact with others from a positio of power. In these moments, we have the potential to impact on the other for good – or ill. I is a clear ethical choice – to borrow from Frankl, do we behave decently or indecently? At  time when, in the international sphere, there has been a surge in indecent behaviour, Gerar Fitzpatrick explores our potential for doing good and right by others – and ourselves Following on Karl Popper’s thesis that all we have is our current best thinking, and that as lon as we are open to new ideas, this position is likely to evolve and change, Gerard proposes tha we work best by drawing on a range of theorists in order to form our own integrativ approach that sits best with our individual traits and competencies.

Ultimately, when working with others, we are seeking to create an environment in whic people feel safe and confident enough to make life affirming choices. Voice is intimatel linked to power, so speaking in our authentic voice is empowering. Thus, as group leaders we are seeking to constantly create the opportunity for voice, without compulsion. Whateve approach we take, it is ultimately, according to Yalom, the relationship that heals, a viewpoin that echoes strongly with the views and practice of William Glasser.

The speaker sees the theory, but above all else, the practice of William Glasser – particularl as seen on screen and as captured in his book Counselling with Choice Theory – as an important part of the ever evolving approach he seeks to bring to his engagements with groups an individuals.

Keynote Speaker: Gerard Fitzpatrick

Most of Gerard’s working life has been spent engaging with people in group settings. He i particularly drawn to marginalised, voiceless groups and is concerned with the recovery o power through finding one’s voice. Trained in a number of areas, including psychotherapy RT/CT, group facilitation and history, Gerard loves learning.

He set up his own company in 2008, just before the economic collapse! He is a QQI registere provider. He has just published his book Effective Group Leadership (Orpen Press, 2016). H is currently writing a book on addiction and domestic violence. He loves animals, reading being in nature and meeting people.


Workshop A: How relevant is Dr. Glasser’s “Warning” book in 2107? Current Criticisms of

The Medical Model.

This workshop will offer an opportunity to reflect on the ideas expressed by Dr. Glasser in his 200 book “Warning: Psychiatry can be hazardous to your mental health”. The presentation will revie his ideas on mental health and contrast this with the standard “diagnose and medicate” approac that is used in treating the symptoms of unhappiness.

1954 was the year that Dr. Glasser began his psychiatric career, it was also the year that the dru Chlorpromazine was introduced to the American market. This event marked out the two divergen approaches towards helping people who experience psychological problems in their lives The workshop will also examine some of the work which has been done in the years since 200 when the “Warning” book was published. In particular, it will look at recent critiques of the medica model by doctors and psychiatrists such as Dr. Peter Breggin ; Dr.David Healy; Dr. Peter Gotzsch and Dr.Terry Lynch. And in particular, Dr. Joanna Moncrieff who makes the distinction between  “disease centred” understanding of medication, where the drugs are targeting so called specifi illnesses and an older “drug centred” understanding where the emphasis was on the effects of th drugs. We will also look at the 2015 “Restoring Study 329” which re- examined the trial data in th original study of 2001 which was used by Glaxo Smith Kline to justify the prescribing of Seroxa (Paxil) to adolescents. This became the most intensely studied drug trial ever and the 2015 stud found some very different results from the original study.

The workshop will be interactive and participation and sharing will be part of the process.

Presenter: Jimmie Woods

Jimmie Woods (M.S. Family Counselling,) is a Senior Faculty member of the William Glasser Institute  and holds the European Certificate in Psychotherapy in Reality Therapy He has worked as a Guidance Counsellor with adolescents in a school setting for over 30 years. H has presented at previous national and European conferences.


Workshop B: Choice Theory at work in an Adult Education Guidance Service

This workshop will explore the nature of Adult Education and what an Adult Education Guidanc Service offers to the unemployed, those with basic education and those in part-time education. I will examine how Choice Theory/Reality Therapy can be used effectively in this area. It will offe ways to explore long term and short term goals, and planning using CT/RT.

Participants will be invited to be active in Pair-work, Triad work, and sharing in small groups/sharing with the whole group

Presenter: Tadhg Crowley

Tadhg is an Adult Education Guidance Counsellor in County Galway since 2006. He became intereste in CT/RT while studying for M. Sc. in Educational Guidance and Counselling and he certified in CT/R in 2006. He took part in the training for the Take Charge of Your Life programme in 2015.




When the idea of Focus Groups was first mooted by Dr. Glasser in his 2003 book “Warning: Psychiatr can Damage your Mental Health”, our two presenters, Doreen and Ann took a first step and set up  Choice Theory Readers’ Group. This was so well received and supported that a facilitator-led Focu Group was the next step. From this beginning, several of these members continued their journey an are now working towards certification. The presenters will tell you about the challenges an satisfactions of setting up and working with a Choice Theory Focus Group in a Community setting.

They will tell how it is an effective way of spreading Choice Theory ideas, and a worthwhile and nee satisfying experience for all concerned. There will be input from some of the Focus Group participants o the difference that participation in the Focus Group has made to their lives.

Keynote Presenters: Doreen Roche and Members of the Bray Choice Theory Focus Group

Doreen has a long history of volunteering in her community. She has vast experience in working fo WGII in promoting Choice Theory. The Bray Choice Theory Focus Group is the longest-running Focu Group in Ireland, and its members will share its successes and challenges in bringing Choice Theory t the community.


Workshop Session Two: 4.00-5.30

Workshop A: Another Look at Total Behaviour

The workshop will incorporate a few exercises both as examples of activities and as ways t refresh your memories about Glasser’s concept of Total Behaviour. Brian will present a fe new angles on this and highlight its significance in Choice Theory. He will also provide a ver tangible demonstration of the power of total behaviour

Presenter: Brian Lennon

Brian is a senior faculty member of the William Glasser Institute and former director of WGI and former Chairperson of William Glasser International. Now retired, he worked as a Psychologist and Guidance Counsellor with Co. Louth V.E.C.


Workshop B: Can Choice Theory be the necessary and sufficient psychology for the

Pluralistic Approach to Counselling and Psychotherapy?

The Pluralistic Approach to Counselling and Psychotherapy is a relatively new and exciting approac to helping people in distress. It encourages a collaborative dialogue with the client, who is accepte as the active agent of change in the process. This workshop will outline the Pluralistic Approach, an will demonstrate how Choice Theory can be a unifying framework for the approach, with discussio of its strengths and limitations.

Presenter: Arthur Dunne

Arthur is a senior faculty member of WGII. He is former President of the European Association o Reality Therapy, and is an accredited Reality Therapy Psychotherapist. He has just been awarded th European Certificate in Psychotherapy in Reality Therapy.

Scroll to Top