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Why Don't Diets Work? CBT's Judith Beck Has the Answer

A Five-Step Process for Mastering Dieting Skills

Judith Beck - Why is it so hard to stick to a healthy eating plan and a reasonable exercise regimen? From the viewpoint of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), when it comes to changing behavior, especially long-term, habitual patterns, getting yourself to do something different, even when you know it's good for you, depends largely on what you tell yourself: that is, on your thinking.

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When Money Comes Up in Therapy

Two Ways to Make Your Fee Policies Clear and Easy to Talk About

By Lynne Stevens - Most therapists were never coached about how to reconcile the closeness of the therapeutic encounter with the fact that therapy is also a business. It has taken me years to understand that therapy is not separate from the exchange of money. I am in this profession because I care and have skills and knowledge that can help, and I also need to make a living.

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What Can Therapists Learn from The Minimalists?

Expert Joshua Millburn Explains What It Really Means to Let Go

By Ryan Howes - How does minimalism correlate with wellness? Why do we crave stuff, yet feel relief when we let it go? We therapists can easily identify the pathology of hoarding, but can we also see the benefits of embracing minimalism? To find answers to those kinds of questions, we caught up with Joshua Millburn, co-founder of The Minimalists.

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Raising Boys Right

How to Help Closed-Off Young Men Cross the Communication Divide

By Adam Cox - As we raise and support the next generation of boys, it's vital that we give them the tools to be full participants in society by helping them find the words to define themselves and relate to others. To do so, therapists and parents alike must explore new means of engaging silent youngsters, going beyond the business-as-usual inquiries about thoughts and feelings.

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Approaching Food Differently

Treating Binge Eating from a Non-Diet Perspective

By Sandra Wartski - Although binge eating disorder is the most common type of eating disorder, many people suffering with it don’t get the help they need because of their embarrassment about their bodies and eating habits. The approach to treating it is similar to other eating-disorder work, but we need to be especially vigilant about addressing issues of self-agency and keeping the focus more on wellness than weight.

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Listening to the Body's Story

In Couples Therapy, Sitting With Sensations Can Have a Surprising Effect

By Molly Layton - Even with two people sitting quietly, an interpersonal space isn't an empty space—it's alive with a peculiar quality. These days, in certain intractable situations, I keep discovering how much getting couples to focus on the immediacy of their bodily sensations can change the entire flow and direction of what takes place in my office.

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My Greatest Clinical Learning Experience

Finding the "Genuine Hero" in Even Your Most Troubled Clients

By Lisa Ferentz - In the early days of the trauma field, clients were seen as one-dimensional bundles of dysfunction and pain, who needed to relive their trauma before progress could be made. But an increased interest in post-traumatic growth has allowed many therapists to see that insight and healing can occur not only in the midst of devastating experiences, but even because of them.

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Couples Therapy with a Positive Spin

How to Accomplish Something in Every Session

By Ellen Wachtel - Doing couples therapy isn’t easy. But often there are implicit positives in statements in which the main point is anger, disappointment, and hurt. With practice, therapists can learn to pick up on the strengths that are embedded in painful emotions.

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The Best Way to Support Older Caregivers

...And the One Question You Probably Didn't Think to Ask

By Nancy Kriseman - The Alzheimer’s Association estimates that 5.2 million Americans affected by dementia are over the age 65, which makes the vast majority members of what’s called the traditionalist generation. Understanding this generation’s entrenched values and how they can affect their coping and your intervention can facilitate better outcomes.

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Does Energy Psychology Really Work?

Tapping Pioneer David Feinstein Shares What Made Him a Believer

By David Feinstein - About a decade ago, something came along to challenge my bedrock beliefs about therapy: Energy Psychology, a method based on tapping on selected acupuncture points to address psychological problems. What could possibly have possessed a seen-it-all therapist like me to embrace an approach that many consider the latest incarnation of snake oil? What follows is the answer.

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How To Stop Couples Conflict Before It Even Starts

...And the Five Life Factors That Contribute to Intensifying Anger Arousal

By W. Robert Nay - Therapy often involves entirely too much talking about new skills the client should put into place, but not enough rehearsing. Just as exposure training reduces anxiety to feared situations, having couples rehearse conflict makes them feel less threatened as they learn new ways of responding to old anger triggers.

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The Trigger Warning Controversy

Are We Promoting a Culture of Avoidance?

By Chris Lyford - According to some critics, an overly protective approach to presenting college course materials deemed too triggering—in books, lessons, and lectures—could soon be coming to a university near you. Are they a boon to student mental health, or just promoting a culture of avoidance?

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The Healing Power of Uncertainty

Our Traditional Approaches to Anxiety Treatment Aren't Good Enough

By Reid Wilson - Therapy with anxious clients is most effective when I repeatedly challenge their underlying beliefs about how to handle distress. Anxious clients don't need my cleverness. They need therapeutic principles powerful enough to offset their faulty beliefs. I've learned to help my anxious clients by challenging three of their most basic life stances: their attitudes toward worry, certainty, and comfort.

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Restoring Intimacy the Natural Way

How to "Build a Bridge" to Sexual Desire

By Barry McCarthy - Contrary to media myths, movies, and male braggadocio, sex is seldom 100 percent successful, especially as men age. By a certain age, men need to learn what most women already know: good, satisfying, pleasurable sex, particularly in midlife and beyond, is more a matter of intimate teamwork than of physical hydraulics.

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The Frequently Overlooked Reason Some Kids Misbehave

A New Treatment Offers Hope for the Undiagnosable

By Karen Smith - The delicate interaction between the brain and body known as sensory integration allows us to live without being driven to distraction by the cacophony of sensory experience that bombards us every day. But for some children, sensory integrative dysfunction impairs the ability to judge accurately whether the sensation is important or trivial, and therefore, how to respond logically and efficiently.

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The New Realities of Dying

A Daughter Struggles with the Medical System's Epidemic of Overtreatment

By Katy Butler - Although many doctors assume that people want to extend their lives, many do not. I believe that my father’s doctors did their best within a compartmentalized and time-pressured medical system. But in the absence of any other guiding hand, there is no doubt that economics helped shape the wider context in which doctors made decisions.

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VIDEO: What Infidelity Looks Like

All Types of Cheating Have This in Common

Of course, sexual affairs are red flags for infidelity, but there are common elements that make any outside relationship an infidelity. Sex therapist Tammy Nelson explains what they are and how to spot them.

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Five Ways to Maintain Gains in Couples Therapy

...And the First Question You Need to Ask Relapsing Partners

By Jon Carlson - Couples therapists need to be aware of the strategies that prevent relapse, so that short-term successes don't become long-term failures, and to address those areas in the initial therapy with the couple. However, if gains are not maintained, here are five areas of treatment you may need to revisit.

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Is Consensual Nonmonogamy Right for Your Clients?

...And Why Nonmonogamous Couples Tend to Avoid Couples Therapists Like the Plague

By Margaret Nichols - In past decades, the only alternatives to involuntary celibacy in a relationship were affairs or divorce. But increasingly, people, including therapists, are recognizing there’s another option: consensual nonmonogamy. The idea isn’t new, but nonmonogamy is threatening to a lot of therapists for the same reason it’s threatening to most people: we instinctively want to believe that these unconventional relationships are flawed.

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Mastering the Art of Therapeutic Judo

A Three-Step Process for Cooling Volatile Emotions from the Very First Session

By Thomas Sexton - Based on 30 years of research on the most effective interventions with delinquent and violent juveniles and their families, I’ve found that the research-backed clinical model Functional Family Therapy guides me in sessions and keeps me grounded. Here's how it works.

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Why Most Men Don't Open Up in Couples Therapy

A Boot Camp Approach That Makes Men the Partners They Want to Be

By Steven Stosny - Men don't dislike therapy because they might have to talk like women or adopt feminine sensibilities: what they hate is that therapy forces them to experience that most heinous emotional state to a man—feeling like a failure. I've developed what I call "boot camp" couples therapy—a tough, concentrated format that men seem to prefer to drawn-out weekly therapy with no conclusion in sight.

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England's Grand Mental Health Care Experiment

Did "the World's Most Ambitious Effort" to Expand Treatment Fall Flat?

By Chris Lyford - England's Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) initiative provides mental health care to more than 900,000 people annually, and employs more than 6,000 therapists. But can psychotherapy really be systematized on a nationwide scale?

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Finding Strength in the Family Narrative

The Vital First Step in Helping Parents and Children Tap Into Their Resilience

By Michael Graziano - I've found that preparing clients to become involved in finding their own solutions to their problems is a vital first step in helping them tap their resilience. Resilience-based therapy isn't about giving clients a set of action directions, but rests first on helping them enlarge their own mental framework by looking at the problem differently and realizing that there are many options for resolving it.

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What Attunement Really Looks Like

Step One: Confronting Your Own Limitations

By Molly Layton - The longer I practice, the more I'm struck with the importance of tolerant, hovering attentiveness that looks, Janus-faced, both outwardly at the client and inwardly toward the therapist's own processes.

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Tony Robbins on “The Art of Fulfillment”

Being Content Doesn’t Have to Mean Choosing Happiness Over Success

The bad news? We all have a two-million-year-old brain that keeps us constantly anxious and self-critical. The good news? It doesn’t have to define who we are. In this video clip from his interview with Networker Editor Rich Simon, life strategist and 2018 Symposium presenter Tony Robbins explains how a coaching edge can help your clients find happiness and success.

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