The Intensive Contract is one of the Session Contracts. There are several interpretations of Intensive Contract and the differences depend on what client and counsellor negotiated and sometimes on the theoretical background of an interpretation.
The negotiations between client and counsellor outline what they might expect of each other in this contract, having learned by experience how to offer intensive interventions.
The Classical interpretation of the Intensive Contract
The client starts the session. At any time the counsellor can give suggestions that are directed at supporting discharging distress and breaking patterns. It is used when the client is aware they may be consistently avoiding an area of distress and need support to continue working through their avoidance. When they unawarely distract themselves from the direction in which they have committed themselves to look, they have already negotiated a contract in which the Counsellor is empowered to intervene. There is also the trust in the Counsellor that he or she can pull back the Client when losing the Balance of Attention.
The client is expected to at least try out the suggestions the counsellor is giving, despite the resistance their pattern may present.. The client, though, can change the Intensive Contra.ct in another contract at any time in the session or awarely reject suggestions while maintaining their Intensive Contract relationship with the Counsellor.
This is the 'classical' type of 'counsellor-led' session stemming from Re-Evaluation Counselling and is based on the Chronic Patterns Theory developed by Harvey Jackins.
The Intensive Contract as a Support Request with an Intensive Experience.
Sometimes a Client can ask for an intensive contract when they feel ready for and hope to work intensively. What they actually mean and receive is a Normal Contract with suggestions that might support them to work intensely. This might sometimes happen when Client is unsure what level of intervention might be needed to address the issues. This implies that the counsellor can expect some suggestions not being tried out, but ignored because the Client experiences the Self directed level at which they are working, as productive. In this 'Intensive Contract' interpretation the Counsellor is not expected to challenge the Client's chosen direction.
The Intuitive Contract as Intensive Contract.
This is asked for by Clients who know their Counsellor has Intuitive gifts which make their suggestions creative, enjoyable and productive. In this interpretation of the Intensive Contract the Client gives the Counsellor the creative Freedom to give any suggestions, which may include physical and Role Play interventions. This all happens within the bounds of the Normal "Client in Charge" Contract: at all times the Client can refuse or ignore a suggestion.
When the Client is asking for an Intensive Contract, the following mutual expectations need to be checked and clarified:
- Can the Counsellor expect a suggestion to be ignored or at least tried out?
- Is there a shift of responsibility of the Client keeping their Balance of Attention towards the Counsellor?
- Are the Counsellor's interventions exclusively focused on emotional discharge or can the Client expect other process-supporting suggestions like role-play?