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What Comedians Can Teach Us About Therapy

A Comic-Turned-Therapist's Guide to Dealing with Unruly Clients

Kirsten Lind Seal • 8/16/2018 • 1 Comment

By Kirsten Lind Seal - Before I became a therapist, I spent 20 years as a professional performer, during which time I was a regular at standup comedy clubs. Many of the skills I learned as a performer have proven readily transferable to therapy, namely the skill of using humor to defuse tension, create alliance, and challenge what we often call resistance in difficult clients.

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Helping People Pleasers Set Boundaries

…And What to Do When It Backfires

Alicia Muñoz • 8/13/2018 • No Comments

Alicia Muñoz - Boundaries bind. They limit, stop, and inhibit. But they also free people up to be themselves. In couples where one partner is a people-pleaser, things can get even more complicated.

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Making Partners Therapists for Each Other

In a Good Relationship, Your Problems Aren't Yours Alone

Ellen Wachtel • 8/10/2018 • No Comments

By Ellen Wachtel - In couples therapy, if we can help each partner be a better therapist for the other, all three of us can feel more helpful and effective. My favorite way is to start by using a particular exercise to provide a window into each partner’s psyche.

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Are You Missing Your Client's Signals?

Lesser-Known Ways of Strengthening the Therapeutic Alliance

Steve Andreas • 7/26/2018 • No Comments

By Steve Andreas - Getting immediate, nonverbal feedback from clients is essential to knowing how they’re responding in a session, and in maintaining the therapeutic relationship, which research shows is essential for successful therapy. Here are some strategies to increase your sensitivity to nonverbal shifts.

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Mastering the Tango of Love

Sue Johnson on Discovering Hidden Moments of Connection

Susan Johnson • 7/19/2018 • No Comments

By Sue Johnson - If you’re going to help a couple get closer and learn to really dance together, whether in bed or anywhere else, the key is helping partners experience bonding moments that open them to becoming emotionally accessible to each other. If you can do that, their bodies will follow, and sex will almost always improve.

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The Nine Personality Types, According to the Enneagram

Are You The Giver, The Performer, The Observer, or Something Else?

David Daniels • 7/13/2018 • 2 Comments

By David Daniels - The typology I’ve found most helpful in organizing my own work and understanding my clients’ lifelong patterns is the Enneagram, a system of personality types. When we can witness our own habit of mind and its repetitive, limiting pattern in a nonjudgmental way with gratitude—which this system facilitates—we gain great leverage in changing our patterns.

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Taking Imagery to the Next Level

This Approach Adds a Crucial Dimension to the Therapy Experience

Kate Cohen-Posey • 7/10/2018 • 1 Comment

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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Myths and Realities of the Asperger's Experience

Normalizing and Mobilizing Clients and Their Families

Richard Howlin • 6/8/2018 • 2 Comments

By Richard Howlin - Adults with Asperger's syndrome often behave as if they were confused actors walking onto a stage and being the only ones who don't know the lines or the plot. One of my initial goals in therapy is to help them realize the role their brain plays in their everyday practical and social understanding. Then, we embark on a step-by-step process of skill training, life planning, and helping clients integrate their unusual and obsessive talents into a productive life.

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Making Way for Manhood 2.0

Therapists Push Back Against a Cultural Force

Chris Lyford • 6/4/2018 • No Comments

By Chris Lyford - Expanding the limited definition of masculinity is prime territory for therapists. But when running up against entrenched social mores, how can we bring about change? A few therapists have found creative ways to make space in therapy for raising more emotionally expressive young men.

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Getting Comfortable with Discomfort

Using Art Therapy to Welcome the Unknown

Lisa Mitchell • 5/29/2018 • 2 Comments

By Lisa Mitchell - As both an art therapist and a marriage and family therapist, I believe that vulnerability, doubt, fear, and uncertainty—feelings most people try to avoid—are essential to getting unstuck. I teach clients how to move beyond "artist’s block," a state of being joylessly trapped in repetitive patterns and rigid expectations, and welcome the type of anxiety around the unknown that creativity invites.

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