Who was David Grove?

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David Grove (1950-2008) was an extraordinarily inventive counseling psychologist and coach who developed numerous processes to help people know and heal themselves, including Clean Language and Clean Space.

Originally from New Zealand, with family of both Maori and European backgrounds, Grove lived in the United States for years, receiving his Master’s degree from the University of Minnesota. He traveled the world, speaking and demonstrating his ever-evolving techniques.

Grove first developed Clean Language in the 1980s, working with traumatized clients whom he noticed naturally used metaphors to describe their experiences. He developed a form of metaphor therapy he called Clean Language to explore the complex world of the clients’ troubled inner experiences without having to directly confront traumas through re-telling—and re-living—them. Without having to interpret the metaphors, clients were able to heal, to reprocess, and rebalance through their Clean Language sessions.

In the early 2000s, Grove diverted onto a new path with methodologies he called Clean Space and Emergent Knowledge. These focused less on metaphoric images and more on the use of space. He realized that people store information—including memory, facts, and emotions—in space. When they project their attention to those spaces, they are able to sort through confusions and discover more about themselves and what they want and need. 

You can learn more about David Grove from a biography, The Work and Life of David Grove: Clean Language and Emergent Knowledge by Carol Wilson, available in 2018.