Depth Psychology refers to approaches to therapy that are open to the exploration of the subtle, unconscious, and transpersonal aspects of human experience. A depth approach may include therapeutic traditions that explores the unconscious and involves the study and exploration of dreams, complexes, and archetypes. Depth psychology is non-pathologizing and strength affirming.
The approach is based on the theories of Carl Gustav Jung (1875-1961), a Swiss psychiatrist who developed Analytical Psychology. This approach focuses on the psyche, human development, personality formation, and individuation. Individuation is a process of bringing our unconscious potential into a concrete living reality. This process helps to secure a bridge between an individual and the unconscious as well as the individual and his/her wider community. By incorporating both an inner and outer exploration, one discovers a more potent sense of meaning and purpose in life.
Carl Jung believed that psychological distress is a result of an imbalance within the individual that often is experienced as an alienation from the deeper personality, or what he calls the Self. Jungian psychotherapy seeks to restore the individual’s connection to the Self. This effort can be achieved through the therapeutic relationship, dream interpretation, active imagination, and work with expressive therapies.