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419 S. 19th Street,
Philadelphia PA 19146

Welcome to An Integral Life

What is an integral Life?

A Message from Dr. Nancy Maguire

Beginning in 2001, Integral Life was the name of my psychology practice in Philadelphia. I chose the name because it reflects how I practice as a clinical psychologist. I see the whole person, not just one aspect mistaken for the whole. I was working in a shared office of practitioners offering services such as massage therapy, chiropractic care and acupuncture. Because I bring a relational style to my work, whether that is psychotherapy, teaching or mentoring, I also wanted to create a practice that was a community. I then began working with Anne Denner, a licensed clinical social worker. We went on to establish a community of practitioners, including therapeutic massage, acupuncture, nutrition counseling and psychotherapy. The nature of the practice is like a cooperative. We all work together and have created a community based on wellness, while also each having our separate practices.

An integral life is one that is balanced between four areas: mind, body, community and spirit. By caring and developing each of these areas a fuller, more satisfying life is available. Psychologists are usually more focused on the mind. Integral Psychology takes a broader view. This means that in therapy the body, community and spirit will be explored. An Integral Psychologist might suggest using massage, tai chi or other ways of impacting the body to create psychological change. An integral psychologist will ask about your eating habits, exercise habits, and routine medical care. Similarly the development of community, what can be thought of as "finding your tribe" may also be a focus of integral psychology. Looking at your satisfaction with intimacy, friendships and family is also a part of therapy with an integral psychologist. A spiritual life is encouraged by an integral psychologist. This does not necessarily mean religious practice; it means connecting to that "something larger than me" feeling, or perhaps seeing the interconnectedness of life. Each area is important, and it is the Integral Life, not just a sound mind, that is the focus of therapy.

What is A Relational Perspective ?

Being relational means being non-pathological. The pathological medical model sees the person as sick and needing the intervention of a practitioner. A relational perspective means the connections you make to the people in your life- at work or home, as well as in therapy – are the source of learning about yourself and creating change. It means that relationships are valued. A relational perspective also means that treatment is a collaborative effort. Goals are decided on together. The relationship in therapy becomes a source of self awareness and opens up the possibility of an integral life. Being in a relationship means you are listened to and respected. This does not always mean agreeing! The "patient" is not the passive recipient of treatment, but an active and collaborative member of a relationship. A relational perspective is also dynamic, meaning that the interaction between two people teaches something about the psychological functioning of a person.


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