The focus of Ales’ clinical work is aimed at changes in the personality structure. This is because psychological distress, difficulties in the view of oneself, and one’s engagements in relationships predominantly stem from deeper structures of the personality. The goal is to facilitate a long-lasting deeper change in personality functioning, which is usually the origin of symptoms. The latter is especially important when working with traits of personality disorders.
As such, in his clinical psychotherapy and counselling practice, Ales mainly focuses on personality functioning and the effects of developmental experiences on an individual’s identity, the sense of self, and relationships in adulthood. This may include work with developmental trauma (childhood trauma), including neglect, abuse, and other Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs). Because such developmental violations usually affect the individual’s view of themselves, others and the world, they will usually have a profound impact on one’s relationships, along with their sense of meaning and purpose in adult life.
Symptoms that may pertain to such underlying developmental origins often include anything from subjective experience of emptiness and meaninglessness, anxiety, depression, issues with emotional regulation, issues of obsessive-compulsive nature, eating disorders (including binge-eating disorder), addiction, and existential issues.
From the perspective of personality functioning, this may include work with borderline personality organisation (personality disorders), as well as neurotic personality organisation with potentially accompanying traits of personality disorders.
Based on his clinical work as a psychotherapist, Ales also developed a theory of Parasitic Personality Organisation and Parasitic Relatedness, which is determined by the lack of individual’s sense of subjectivity.
Ales also specialises in group and intergroup dynamics. He is passionate about working with collective identity in clinical setting, focusing on cultural and other forms of social diversity and the impacts, both conscious and unconscious, that cultural identities may have on interpersonal relationships.
He is also actively involved in working in organisational settings where he focuses on the impacts that group and intergroup processes may have on intangible parts of organisational culture.