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Adjusting the Unconscious

What if a Few Basic Principles Could Make Change Far Easier?

Steve Andreas • 4/10/2017 • 2 Comments

By Steve Andreas - What if there were a few basic principles and methods that make therapeutic change far simpler and easier than most people think is possible? Not only is this possible, but there’s already a coherent body of knowledge and practice to guide us in eliciting change in the moment, confirmed by longer-term follow-up in the real world. Here are seven practical principles for making sense out of the case study that follows.

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VIDEO: Combining Trauma Treatment with Family Therapy

Making Sure Treatment Sticks Outside the Therapy Room

Mary Jo Barrett • 4/5/2017 • 1 Comment

Far too often, trauma survivors appear to progress in therapy and then go home and fall right back into the same old patterns of negative emotion and dysfunctional relationships. According to Mary Jo Barrett, author of Treating Complex Trauma, a client’s family can be the therapist’s biggest ally in making sure progress is sustained outside the consulting room. Still, she says, many clinicians overlook how family therapy can support recovery.

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VIDEO: Richard Schwartz on How Symptoms Reveal the Path to Growth

Using Internal Family Systems to Befriend the Inner “Protector”

Richard Schwartz • 1/18/2017 • No Comments

Oftentimes, our attitudes toward our anxiety symptoms are misguided, says Richard Schwartz, the originator of Internal Family Systems Therapy. We try to suppress our heavy breathing. We get annoyed by our cold sweats. But by understanding these responses as a positive expression of a wish to protect oneself, rather than simply negative symptoms, Schwartz says, trauma survivors are in a better position to begin the process of healing.

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Six Things Therapists Are Saying After the Election

. . . And Why You Shouldn't Be Afraid to Call Out the Chicken Littles

Chris Lyford • 12/20/2016 • 2 Comments

By Chris Lyford - Regardless of where you stand politically, it’s hard to deny that the 2016 presidential election was one of the most stress-inducing in recent history. Democrats and Republicans alike continue to wrestle with lingering anxiety and tension. But none of this comes as a surprise to most therapists, who’ve been on the front lines of treating post-election stress. Here are some valuable lessons they’ve taken away from their recent work helping clients in these post-election times. 

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Turning Panic into Power

Hidden Strengths Can Be the Key to Healing Trauma

Courtney Armstrong • 9/30/2016 • 4 Comments

By Courtney Armstrong - As therapists, we’re taught to be master detectives who methodically investigate our clients’ symptoms in search of a “culprit”—the source of their pain. But if we spend too much time preoccupied with symptoms, we’re likely to miss important clues to hidden strengths, which can transform the experience of psychotherapy.

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When Victims Victimize Others

Using Empathy to Help Abusers Make Amends

Noel Larson • 7/12/2016 • 3 Comments

Throughout my career, countless people have asked me how I can work with clients who’ve committed sexual abuse, murdered their wives, or broken their children’s bones and spirits. My answer has always been the same: all I have to do is remember and feel in my heart the traumatized children my clients once were.

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The Power of Community in Healing Trauma

Therapy in the Aftermath of the Paris Terrorist Attacks

Chris Lyford • 4/1/2016 • No Comments

By Chris Lyford - In the aftermath of terrorist attacks, such as the one in Paris, clinicians are increasingly aware that the most effective way of preventing or minimizing post-terror trauma isn’t some set of therapeutic techniques, but the power of community to help people feel connection and support.

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Bessel van der Kolk Takes on the New York Times

Psychotherapy in the Spotlight

Kathleen Smith • 10/24/2014 • 4 Comments

It’s no secret that psychotherapy has had an image problem in the media. So when The New York Times Magazine asked trauma expert Bessel van der Kolk if it could have a journalist follow him around for a month to observe his work, it seemed like a golden opportunity to present the latest advances in trauma treatment in one of mainstream journalism’s most highly respected forums.

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VIDEO: Helping Traumatized Clients Heal their Inner Parts

Treating Complex Trauma with IFS Therapy

Richard Schwartz • 9/4/2014 • 2 Comments

According to Dick Schwartz’s Internal Family Systems (IFS) model, all people have within them multiple “inner parts,” each with distinct emotions, beliefs, and roles adapted to help us cope with life’s challenges.

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Bringing the Family Into Trauma Treatment

Psychotherapy Networker • 8/21/2014 • No Comments

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