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Human Givens (HG) Therapy

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"The greatest achievement is selflessness.
The greatest worth is self-mastery.
The greatest quality is seeking to serve others.
The greatest precept is continual awareness.
The greatest medicine is the emptiness of everything.
The greatest action is not conforming with the world's ways.
The greatest magic is transmuting the passions.
The greatest generosity is non-attachment.
The greatest goodness is a peaceful mind.
The greatest patience is humility.
The greatest effort is not concerned with results.
The greatest meditation is a mind that lets go.
The greatest wisdom is seeing through appearances."

Atīśa Dīpaṅkara Śrījñāna (982–1054) - Bengali Buddhist religious leader and master

Frequently asked questions about Human Givens

What is Human Givens?
Human Givens is a therapeutic
approach that focuses on identifying and meeting basic emotional needs to promote mental and emotional well-being.

What are the basic emotional needs?
The basic emotional needs identified by Human Givens include the need for security, attention, autonomy, status, intimacy, achievement, and connection to a wider community.

How is Human Givens different from other therapeutic approaches?
Human Givens differs from other therapeutic approaches in its emphasis on meeting basic emotional needs and its use of practical techniques to help people overcome emotional challenges.

What are the techniques used in Human Givens therapy?
The techniques used in Human Givens therapy include guided imagery, relaxation techniques, cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), and solution-focused therapy.

What types of issues can be addressed through Human Givens therapy?
Human Givens therapy can be used to address a wide range of emotional and mental health issues, including anxiety, depression, trauma, addiction, and relationship problems.

HG Therapy

HG Therapy is an eclectic approach to mental health recovery which is effective, holistic, and person-centred. Therapy focuses on recognising triggers for past and present patterns of feeling, thinking and behaving, and identifying clients' innate and learnt resources, and their unmet emotional and physical needs. The HG approach offers a clearer understanding of human nature, emotional well-being, and mental health.    

HG Therapy is based on extensive evidence and research in neuroscience, psychology, and anthropology, bringing together what is actually effective and useful from a wide variety of approaches to psychotherapy and recovery. HG Therapy also recognises many sources of helpful ancient wisdom for daily practical guidance such as Buddhism and Suf
ism (Islamic mysticism).

Having a broad repertoire of useful and applicable skills, knowing why something is useful, as well as the HG organising ideas make HG Therapy effective and therapeutic in facilitating short to long-term change and recovery.     

Physical, psychological, social, and emotional needs, as well as pre-existing resources and strengths - in essence, our Human Givens - are quickly identified. Patients can relax, and talk freely and openly about any problem so that all relevant information can be gathered. Positive and realistic goals are identified early on in therapy. An individual care plan is jointly agreed upon to achieve the identified goals. Patients are encouraged to remember how to breathe diaphragmatically again and to imagine and visualise their plan in action. They are subsequently supported in rehearsing and realising the treatment plan in the real world, with ongoing medical support and review.

"Do not lose hope, nor be sad. You will surely be victorious if you are true in Faith."

The Holy Qur'an (Muslims believe the Qur'an was orally revealed by God to the final Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) through the archangel Gabriel incrementally from 610 to 632), 3:139 (Surah al-Imran)

Growing evidence shows that HG Therapy is effective in treating mild to moderate depression and anxiety, and emotional distress. This can be highly effective for recovery, especially when other psychological interventions may have been unhelpful. 

HG Therapy is based on the life-changing self-help book "Human Givens: a new approach to emotional health and clear thinking" by Joe Griffin and Ivan Tyrell.  


“Yesterday I was clever, so I wanted to change the world. Today I am wise, so I am changing myself.”

Jalal ad-Din Rumi (1207 - 73) - Persian Muslim poet & Sufi mystic

Check how well you are meeting your emotional needs by completing the Human Givens Emotional Needs Audit.

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