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What to Do When Your Client Cries

If It's Not Broken, Don't Fix It

Jay Efran

By Jay Efran - How can both joyful and tragic events elicit tears? This question puzzles many clinicians, including some who are considered experts in the field of emotional expression. The problem is that few of us have received explicit training in theories of emotion. And sometimes, clinicians can feel an urge to rush in and “fix things” that aren’t broken.

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Five Strategies for When Therapy is Stuck

Bypassing the Limits of Feelings, Judgments, and Language

Steve Andreas

By Steve Andreas - When therapy goes wrong, it’s typically because we’ve entered our clients’ trance, joining them in their myopic misery. Therapy typically hangs on your ability to demonstrate more skill and awareness in using the trancelike qualities of human communication to move beyond the tunnel vision that can stall therapy and prevent change and healing from taking place.

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The Hidden Power of Introverts

Our Culture Misunderstands Them. Do Therapists, Too?

Michael Alcée

By Michael Alcée - Why have we lost sight of the fact that introversion, extroversion, or ambiversion (the middle ground between the two) are seminal parts of who our clients are and how they make sense of life? And how can we do a better job of shining a light on their personality types and helping them validate their own ways of being and belonging in the world?

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The Decline of Connection

The Digital World is Having a Serious Impact on Our Relationships and Our Brains

Diane Ackerman

By Diane Ackerman - Despite all the seeming connectedness, we’re not the most socially connected we’ve ever been. Generation by generation, our brains have been evolving new networks, new ways of wiring and firing, favoring some behaviors and discarding others, as we train ourselves to meet the challenges of a world we keep amplifying, editing, deconstructing, and recreating.

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Taking Imagery to the Next Level

This Approach Adds a Crucial Dimension to the Therapy Experience

Kate Cohen-Posey

By Kate Cohen-Posey - Sometimes, when I ask clients to visualize a safe place or a wise inner guide, they struggle to bring these mental images to life. Just the simple external stimulus of visual images, however, can open new doors for them.

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The Heart of Emotional Intelligence

Illuminating the Connection Between What We Feel, What We Want, and How We Act

Steven Krugman

By Steven Krugman - Mentalization refers to the mind’s innate capacity to make sense of social experiences and implicitly know how to respond to them. But while mentalization fosters an empathic awareness of the moods and mindsets of others, it also enables us to know what our own states of mind and body mean.

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Searching for a Language for Depression

The Vocabulary of Diagnosis Isn't Telling Our Stories

Joshua Wolf Shenk

By Joshua Wolf Shenk - Each year, seventeen million Americans and one hundred million people worldwide experience clinical depression. What does this mean, exactly? Too many of us take comfort in language that raises the fewest questions, provokes the least fear of the unknown. When we funnel a sea of human experience into the linguistic equivalent of a laboratory beaker, we choke the long streams of breath needed to tell of a life in whole.

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When Grief, Guilt, and Anger Collide

Finding Meaning in Feelings That Can Complicate the Grieving Process

Sameet Kumar

By Sameet Kumar - While grief may never entirely fade, and the loss that caused it certainly won't be forgotten, it almost always changes and becomes incorporated into life, so the grieving person can move on. There are times, however, when grief doesn't take this relatively straightforward path toward resolution.

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A Guide for Female Clinicians Treating Men in Therapy

Bridging the Gender Gap in the Consulting Room

Holly Sweet

When I started my clinical training, I wondered about the impact of men's discomfort with emotional expression (and women's ignorance of this discomfort) on how male clients experienced therapy with female therapists. From many years of attention to men's language, attitudes, and needs, I've developed a specific approach to working with male clients. For female clinicians, one of the side benefits of working with men is that it can help us understand the other men in our own lives. Both genders win when we learn more about men.

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Creating a Safe Space for Men in Therapy

Using a Men's Group Therapy Model to Cultivate Emotional Intimacy

Robert Garfield

I have been running therapeutic men’s groups---we call them “friendship labs”---for the past 18 years. We’ve found that groups are particularly appealing for men who experience traditional individual or couples approaches as being too alien or off-putting. There’s something comforting about being part of a group of guys dealing with similar issues, who are there to ask for and give support to each other. This seems to echo Henry Ford’s praise for close male relationships: “My best friend is the one who brings out the best in me.”

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