Virginia Satir’s Evolving Legacy: Transformative Therapy with a Bodymind Connection

I have been one of seven writers who have created a book titled, The Evolving Legacy of Virginia Satir- Transformative Therapy with a Bodymind Connection. We wanted to add to the literature on Satir’s work and show how the Satir Model is growing, thriving and evolving today, according to her wishes. Satir was unique in her articulation of the diversity of magnificent resources that each person has inside them and in relationships. She anticipated many of the recent developments in the field of therapy, including polyvagal theory, family systems, and somatic and trauma-informed modalities.

Birthing a book involves labour, and the gestation period can be variable. In the case of this Satir writers’ group, the gestation period has been counted in years rather than months. There were complications for the authors along the way, like concussions, illnesses, computers pitching themselves into deep water, and bad falls, but we persisted.

Our group formed in 2017 with the purpose of updating the SIP curriculum with more body-focused content. Each member of the group was engaged in using the body and its energy in trainings, but not much was reflected in written form. We explored how SIP was currently teaching the use of the body, the energy around and within the body, and spiritual nature of Satir’s work, with the idea of updating the training manuals.

Every few months, we would meet again to discuss and explore different aspects of these topics. In 2020, it was evident to all of us that there was a book beginning to emerge. We explored: what did Virginia do that was ahead of her time? What advances in therapy were already included in her work? How can we offer insights that can encourage those using the Satir Model to deepen their work through the body, sculpting, and meditations? How can movement be a key to unlocking individuals’ potential and transformation? And how can we work with families through birth and early childhood using the Satir Model and wisdom of body and energy?

John Banmen was a companion and guide throughout our process. In the depths of our conversations, it became clear that we had something unique to share with the broader Satir and non-Satir therapeutic community. Each of us has written a chapter about the Satir Model from our own perspective and area of expertise. The Satir writers’ group includes Mary Leslie MSW; Dr. Nitza Broide-Miller PhD, BC-DMT; Dr. Carolyn Nesbitt, PhD; Julie Gerhardt, B.Sc.P.T; Jennifer Nagel, M.A., RCC; Anastacia Lundholm and Leona Gallant, Metis elder. John Banmen, PhD is writing a preface for the book.

The birth process is underway; we expect delivery of our completed book this spring.

Stay tuned for the announcement of our book launch!

Anastacia Lundholm
Coach, Trainer, Author
Recipient, Satir Model “STST” Leadership Award 2023