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How I Came to Rethink Children’s Challenging Behaviors

Doing Away with the Blame Game

Mona Delahooke

By Mona Delahooke - What’s at the root of children’s aggressive, defiant, and oppositional acts? And how can we better help the children who exhibit these behaviors? Polyvagal Theory shows that the drive to avoid threat and secure safety is what guides human behavior. As such, what we often label as “bad” behaviors are actually fight-or-flight behaviors.

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Caught in a Web

A World Where Life is Always Elsewhere

Fred Wistow

By Fred Wistow - Every day, every moment, we must wade through the flood of incoming alerts and emails urgently demanding our time and attention, all the while knowing that there’s an infinite ocean of stuff online that waits for us at all hours to stick our toe in so that it may then slowly begin to swallow us up . . . until we drown.

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It's Never Too Late

Dan Siegel Shares a Life-Changing Therapeutic Moment

Dan Siegel

By Daniel Siegel - A therapist’s skill base and experience are vital to good therapy. But they’re rarely enough. The following story, taken from Daniel Siegel's 2017 Networker Symposium Dinner Storytelling piece, highlights the need to bring vulnerability and some measure of risk into the treatment room, letting go of any secret ambition to become a Master of the Therapeutic Universe. There’s no such person.

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Does Neuroscience Matter?

The Biological Power of the Talking Cure

Louis Cozolino

By Louis Cozolino - Some therapists bristle at the integration of neuroscience and psychotherapy, calling it irrelevant or reductionistic. But it's hard to grasp how the brain could be irrelevant to changing the mind. Knowing about neuroscience is invaluable for therapists, not because it offers specific new techniques or clinical theories, but because it provides a deeper understanding of the biological power of the "talking cure."

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VIDEO: Building Inner Strength with Brain Science

Cultivating Positivity and Virtue in Yourself and Your Clients

Rick Hanson

Weaving together insights from evolutionary biology, modern neuroscience, positive psychology, and mindfulness practices, neuropsychologist Rick Hanson claims the difficulty at the core of human experience is our perpetual struggle to overcome the negativity bias wired into our brains. Here, he explains how understanding the brain can help therapists and their clients grow inner strengths.

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VIDEO: Helping Clients Envision Personal Transformation

...While Still Validating Their Pain

Courtney Armstrong

How do you help clients access resourceful states when they’re feeling hopeless and helpless? In this short video, trauma specialist Courtney Armstrong explains.

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A Polyvagal Primer

A Three-Part Exercise That Taps Into the Nervous System to Create Safety and Trust

Deb Dana

By Deb Dana - The three elements of our autonomic nervous system—ventral, sympathetic, and dorsal—act as our largely subconscious surveillance system, working in the background to read subtle signals of safety or threat. That’s why I help clients create a clear map of their own autonomic nervous systems, so they become aware of their patterns of response to ease and distress.

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Using Neuroscience in Therapy

Shifting Emotional States in an Instant

Frank Anderson

By Frank Anderson - Most extreme reactions resulting from trauma fall under one of two categories: sympathetic hyperarousal and parasympathetic blunting. Understanding what happens in the nervous system when clients experience either orients me on how to go beyond my immediate reactions when confronted with trauma symptoms in the therapy room.

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ASMR: Coming to a Practice Near You?

An Unusual Self-Care Tool Has Taken the Internet by Storm

Chris Lyford

By Chris Lyford - Some are speculating that ASMR, a soothing physical and emotional experience that 20 to 40 percent of people claim to have, triggered by particular sounds and images, may have therapeutic usefulness. But with the bulk of ASMR videos being created by non-therapists, it's also stirring up controversy.

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VIDEO: Peter Levine on Trauma Treatment's "Greatest Tool"

Tapping into the Power of the Body

Peter Levine

According to trauma specialist Peter Levine, the body is the therapist's greatest tool in helping clients understand and heal from a traumatic event. So rather than focus on the event itself, Levine asks clients to focus on how their body manifests the trauma. In this brief video clip, he shares his method.

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