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  • MIke Brouwer

What can we learn from philosophers when working as a coach? – Binswanger

Bijgewerkt op: 5 dec. 2022

Ludwig Binswanger was a Swiss psychiatrist and psychoanalyst who developed the existential-phenomenological approach to psychotherapy. He believed that individuals have a deep need to find meaning and purpose in their lives, and that this is essential for psychological health.


As a coach, we can learn from Binswanger's approach by helping clients explore the meaning and purpose of their lives in a safe and supportive environment. We can also help clients discover and commit to their values, goals, and aspirations, and work with them to create a plan to live an authentic and meaningful life.

We can also learn from Binswanger's focus on the importance of understanding the individual's subjective experience and his emphasis on self-reflection and self-awareness as a way to gain insight into one's own motivations and behavior.



Finally, we can help clients gain insight into their emotional states and motivations, and explore how these may be influencing their choices and behaviors. Binswanger pointed to the idea that people construct so-called life designs of the world, or as he mentioned: an action radius in the world. Understanding these inner life designs - and specifically the predictive causal relations within in these designs - offers a great entry point for people to understand their choices, as well as to start challenging these designs, and maybe redesign and broaden their action radius in the world. Binswanger regularly asked his clients to start writing about their life designs, giving us a clue to the importance of diaries.

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