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Saturday Clinical Workshops, Comment Board

 
What were some moments from today that stood out for you the most? We invite you to take a few minutes to reflect on your favorite workshops from today and share what was most interesting or new today. You can comment below on the Comment Board, on other Saturday blog posts, or on our Facebook and Twitter pages. As always, we encourage you to include your name and hometown to continue creating a sense of community that we strive to create particularly at the Symposium each year.

03.26.2011   Posted In: Workshop Comments   By Jordan Magaziner
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Louann Brizendine Navigates through Gendered Brains

 

Is gender a social construction, caused when parents dress infant daughters in pink and paint sons’ walls blue? Or when they encourage sons to try out for sports and their daughters to try ballet? I always thought that there are minimal biological differences between men and women—until I heard Louann Brizendine’s presentation today, “The Gendered Brain.” Brizendine, a neuropsychiatrist who wrote the pathbreaking books The Female Brain and The Male Brain, took us on a tour of the male and female brains during each life stage, and pointed out the differences and similarities.

“The brains are more alike than different,” she said, “After all, we are the same species!” But from her extensive studies, it seems there are differences in the brains that really do make a difference. Some of it does have to do with society and culture, but some of it is biologically based.

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03.26.2011   Posted In: Symposium Highlights   By Jordan Magaziner
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The Heart of "Open Space"

 

The Symposium is a conference filled with many learning opportunities, events and programs that are fun, educational, thought-provoking, inspirational. . . and a little bit exhausting, too! On both Friday and Saturday night, psychologist and coach Lynda Klau is facilitating an event called Open Space, a method in which she is also trained, which will provide participants with whatever they want or need.

Klau said that typically, at conferences, the richest and most powerful times are actually at coffee breaks, or any unstructured times when people get together and share their various perspectives and understandings. So Open Space is a time when anyone who wants to gather can come and participate in activities—or not.

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03.26.2011   Posted In: Symposium Highlights   By Jordan Magaziner
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An Evening with Dick Cavett--The Art of the Interview

 
What a treat it was to be able to experience such a noteworthy and charismatic man as Dick Cavett in his area of specialty—an interview. Friday night’s dinner event featured Dick Cavett, the host of the Dick Cavett Show, in which he regularly interviewed stars such as Katharine Hepburn, Betty Davis, Groucho Marx, and innumerable others on the top of Hollywood and history’s “favorites” list.

In the classic talk show format, Cavett sat on stage across from Psychotherapy Networker Editor Rich Simon, in which the two went back and forth reminiscing about Cavett’s favorite times behind the camera, and Simon’s favorite times watching him on the screen.

Select clips from his talk show were played, to the audience’s delight. Some remembered seeing these interviews live so many years ago, and some enjoyed these scenes of celebrity interviews for the first time. Whether or not we grew up avidly watching Cavett’s show, the event was entertaining and enjoyable for everyone present.
03.26.2011   Posted In: Symposium Highlights   By Jordan Magaziner
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Friday Clinical Workshops, Comment Board

 

Welcome to the 2011 Symposium! Although some have been in the conference mindset since Wednesday, Friday is the first day of clinical workshops. Today began with Sherry Turkle’s intriguing morning keynote about technology and human relationships, and of course, Rich Simon’s unforgettable musical rendition of “Don’t Stop Believin’!”

What were your favorite workshop experiences today? What was most striking or interesting or new? We invite your comments here on the Comment Boards, on other Friday blog posts, or, if you’re unfamiliar with social networking, we welcome you to “brave new worlds” and explore our Facebook and Twitter pages! What as the best part of today for you?

03.25.2011   Posted In: Workshop Comments   By Jordan Magaziner
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Don Meichenbaum, Technology and the Future of Psychotherapy

 

Today’s lunch with Don Meichenbaum, Ph.D., the renowned founder of Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy and current Research Director at the Melissa Institute for Violence Prevention and Treatment, was the perfect complement to Sherry Turkle’s morning’s keynote. This morning, Turkle spoke about how our relationships with technology may be harmful to our relationships with each other. Meichenbaum’s presentation, “Technology and the Future of Psychotherapy,” told the other side of the story: how our digital gadgets can be extremely helpful as part of therapy.

Throughout his presentation, he gave us examples of how, through his specific work and through future possibilities, technology can be a key to improving mental health. His work on the Melissa Institute is all available on their website for free, for any mental health professional, educator—or anybody at all—to learn from and use.

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03.25.2011   Posted In: Keynotes   By Jordan Magaziner
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Sherry Turkle's Keynote: "Cyber Intimacy & Solitude"

 

This morning’s keynote, “Cyber Intimacy and Cyber Solitude” with Sherry Turkle, perfectly fit the theme of this year’s Symposium, “Braving New Worlds”—and Rich Simon’s musical production of Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believin’” also appropriately fit the theme of exploration. Turkle, the director of MIT’s Initiative on Technology and Self and a clinical psychologist, spoke about the evolution of our relationships with technology, as illustrated by her extensive studies, as well as her own, changed perspectives and understanding of our beloved electronics.

In the 1970s, she was hired by MIT to teach sociology, but was so struck by the “love affair” she reported students having with computers that she decided to change her role at MIT to instead study and track these shifting relationships.

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03.25.2011   Posted In: Keynotes   By Jordan Magaziner
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Creativity Day Workshops, Comment Board

 
Welcome to the Symposium! Some of you have already been in the spirit of this annual gathering since Wednesday with the start of the Hero’s Journey, some of you have arrived today from all over the world, and some will be arriving tomorrow.

Did you participate in Part 2 of the Hero’s Journey? What was it like to conclude that 2-day experience? If you participated in other Creativity Day workshops, what were your experiences like?

Read about others’ experiences here on the Comment Boards, or on the other Thursday blog posts highlighting this morning's Kickoff event and the Creativity Day Workshops, or go up to our Facebook and Twitter pages and join in the conversation there! In any case, we invite you to include your name and hometown with your comments.
03.24.2011   Posted In: Workshop Comments   By Jordan Magaziner
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Creativity Day Workshops

 
Creativity Day is a rare opportunity for those of us stuck in the grind of day-to-day sameness and seemingly endless to-do lists. This particularly special day of the conference affords us an opportunity to try something new, to explore a passion we don’t get to pursue in our careers, or to discover creative techniques that can be incorporated into our daily personal and professional lives.

Each year, a host of talented and inspirational leaders inspire us in different arenas, offering us the chance to engage in creative adventures like dancing, yoga, photography, and qigong. Whether we’re seasoned singers or tone deaf, it’s a unique and revitalizing experience to try new things or engage in something you know you already love.
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03.24.2011   Posted In: Symposium Highlights   By Jordan Magaziner
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Creativity Day Kickoff

 
Welcome to Creativity Day! Richard Gonzalez led our Creativity Day Kickoff in Afro-Caribbean dance and song, awakening our minds and bodies from early-morning sleepiness, and signaling the beginning of a different kind of day: a day intended to spark inspiration in ourselves and others.

Check back later for some photos of this energetic event; maybe you’ll see yourself or your friends. If you attended the Creativity Day Kickoff—particularly if you’re a first-timer—what did you think?  
03.24.2011   Posted In: Symposium Highlights   By Jordan Magaziner
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The Hero's Journey, Part 1

 

“All of us work with people—we help people help themselves—but rarely do we take time for ourselves,” said Robert Dilts at the start of the Hero’s Journey, “Over the next two days, we’ll get time to regenerate.”

This first day of the mystical-sounding Hero’s Journey delved into what, exactly, is the Hero’s Journey, and then we explored our inner lives through cognitive and movement exercises.
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03.23.2011   Posted In: Symposium Highlights   By Jordan Magaziner
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The Hero's Journey, Comment Board

 
This year, for the first time, an extra day was added to the Symposium, to make room for a special 2-day retreat—“The Hero’s Journey”—led by Robert and Deborah Bacon Dilts. What was your experience like on this first day of the Hero’s Journey? What was something that stood out to you—a specific moment, exercise, or idea?

As always, we invite you to include your name and hometown with your comment, so we all get even more of a sense of community.
03.23.2011   Posted In: Workshop Comments   By Jordan Magaziner
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Sherry Turkle Questions Our Love Affair with Technology

 

It turns out that we’re not the only ones talking about MIT psychologist Sherry Turkle, our Symposium keynote speaker. Her new book, Alone Together, an insightful look at our shifting relationship with technology, has gotten a lot of press recently, earning glowing reviews from both Newsweek and Time.

Have you ever text messaged someone who’s in the same room or e-mailed people in your office rather talking face-to-face? While our beloved new gadgets make our lives more efficient—and entertaining—are they actually separating us, instead of connecting us? Turkle says they are. This week, she appeared on the Colbert Report to discuss it.

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01.21.2011   Posted In: NETWORKER EXCHANGE   By Jordan Magaziner
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The Ethical Dilemmas No One Talks About

 

Remember when setting appropriate boundaries in psychotherapy was a no-brainer? “No” was the operative word--no gifts, no sex, no self-disclosure, no financial or social connection whatsoever outside the hermetically-sealed cloister of the consulting room. The rules were simple, direct, and unambiguous. But in today’s more informal therapy marketplace, the rules often don’t seem as clear anymore.

EthicsSign

So what’s a therapist to do when a client anxiously offers a diamond-studded token of appreciation for all of the positive change you’ve helped him achieve? Do you accept a not-so-valuable gift--a tin of holiday cookies--from a vulnerable client to express thanks? What’s your decision when your therapeutic instincts conflict with the rulebook?

I highly recommend one article in particular--Ofer Zur’s “The Ethical Eye” is a refreshingly sane and practical discussion of how to reconcile risk management with humanistic values. You can read this article free or you can read it as part of our 3-CE Ethics Reading Course.

How does today’s culture make ethics more (or less) complicated in your practice? What resources do you consult in order to make the best possible therapeutic decisions?

Does communications technology--Skype, e-mailing, text messaging, Facebook, or even the telephone--pose any ethical issues to our therapeutic practice? Which modern ethical dilemmas would you like to hear more about--or are there any of your own that you’d be willing to share?

Rich Simon
Editor, Psychotherapy Networker

12.28.2010   Posted In: NETWORKER EXCHANGE   By Jordan Magaziner
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    Dancing With Your Brain 2: Feeling “Felt”

     

    Wow… after reflecting on yesterday’s second session of Dan Siegel’s Master Class, I realize that that feeling of amazement comes from the idea that we really are “dancing” with our brains through this particular course. It’s taken me a little while to process all that I learned in his one-hour webinar (which never really seems to be long enough for a conversation with Dan!) because I found so many aspects of his talk so intriguing.

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    09.24.2010   Posted In: NETWORKER EXCHANGE   By Jordan Magaziner
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      The “New Monogamy” Hits the News

       

      The Networker made the news earlier this week with one of the leading stories in our July issue, Tammy Nelson’s “The New Monogamy.” The Washington Post featured this piece in their Health section, displaying some of the more controversial ideas covered in Nelson’s article.

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      07.23.2010   Posted In: NETWORKER EXCHANGE   By Jordan Magaziner
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        Is the “New Monogamy” New? And other reactions

         

        Thanks, Deborah A., for posting such an informative comment on the online version of Tammy Nelson’s “The New Monogamy.” Deborah complimented the article as “honest, insightful, and self-disclosing” but she also said that she’s “amused and disturbed” by the label of new monogamy.

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        07.19.2010   Posted In: NETWORKER EXCHANGE   By Jordan Magaziner
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