Gestalt Psychotherapy, Conflict and Resolution:

An Autoethnography


  • Mike Talbot, Dr


autoethnography, mediation, gestalt therapy, conflict resolution


This article is based around my experiences as a gestalt psychotherapist who became a full-time mediator. I describe how I have tried to deepen the theoretical underpinning of mediation with a gestalt dialogic-relational approach, and how I have applied my own skills and experience as a gestalt psychotherapist to being a mediator. Using autoethnography as the research method, I analyse aspects of myself and my motivations, and the relationships I have had with people within the mediation field. I conclude that mediation practice would indeed benefit from a greater knowledge of relational, especially gestalt, theory. I also comment on some of my experiences of trying to introduce this much more theory-rich approach, and on how it has been received by other mediation professionals.

Author Biography

Mike Talbot, Dr

Dr Mike Talbot spent the early years of his career working in the UK with people with disabilities and life-­‐threatening conditions. He then trained in management and counselling, working in the National Health Service and in private industry. Mike went on to be an organisational consultant, where he first developed an interest in conflict and its impact on people’s well-being. Mike is now a gestalt psychotherapist with over twenty years’ experience in psychotherapy, training, and supervision and he obtained his D.Psych from Metanoia/Middlesex. He began working as a dispute resolver in 1999, and founded the company, UK Mediation Ltd, as a base from which to pursue his ideas about the overlap between mediation and gestalt psychotherapy. Mike works around the world as a dispute resolver, group facilitator, and mediation trainer. He specialises in working with teams, groups & organisations who are ‘stuck’ in conflict situations, and he runs innovative learning programmes to support people to manage their (and their organisations’) own conflict better.




How to Cite

Talbot, M. (2018). Gestalt Psychotherapy, Conflict and Resolution:: An Autoethnography. European Journal for Qualitative Research in Psychotherapy, 8, 43–53. Retrieved from