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Five Things Seasoned Therapists Wish They'd Known

. . . And the One Question You Should Always Ask Your Clients

Chris Lyford

By Chris Lyford - Whether they’ve been practicing for three months or three decades, therapists are continuously honing their craft. But much of what we learn through trial and error, and hours upon hours sitting across from clients, we were never taught in grad school. So we asked some seasoned therapists to pass on the lessons they wish someone had told them when they were first starting out.

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VIDEO: Rick Hanson on Living with Life's Uncertainties

Wisdom from Rick Hanson's Networker Keynote Address

Rick Hanson

In his address at the 2016 Psychotherapy Networker Symposium in Washington DC, Rick Hanson delivered a moving speech in which he described how becoming more mindful of our body, thoughts, and the linkage between the two can make us happier and less fearful of life's uncertainties.

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VIDEO: Doing Self-Care Right

Sabrina N'Diaye on Tapping Into Your Innate Wisdom

Sabrina N'Diaye

Increasingly, therapists are looking for alternatives to the office-bound rigidity of traditional private practice. In the following interview, The Center for Mind-Body Medicine's Sabrina N'Diaye shares the takeaways from her work, and what it means to be a therapeutic "peacebuilder."

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The Power of Peer Groups

Escaping the Isolation of Private Practice

Eleanor Counselman

By Eleanor Counselman - Peer supervision groups provide a welcome respite from the isolation of private practice and an informal, nonevaluative setting after years of formal supervision, particularly for young therapists. They offer valuable guidance on difficult cases and tough ethical dilemmas to therapists at any level of experience. And they’re free!

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Reframing the "Burden" of Caretaking

Why Accepting Help is Empowering for Those Receiving and Giving

Barry Jacobs

By Barry Jacobs - For those who've spent their lifetimes taking pride in giving generously to others, suddenly being on the receiving end of care because of illness or age-related infirmity can be tormenting. For many, rejecting help is regarded as a measure of one's courage and determination in battling family crises brought on by old age or disease. Here are some ways of overcoming this common tendency to refuse help.

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Erv Polster on How Aging Changes Therapy

Learning to Embrace the Flow of Relationship

Erv Polster

By Erv Polster - As each of us grows older, we can try to embrace the full possibilities of aging, even alongside its challenges. In the following interview, Erv Polster, a prime mover of Gestalt Therapy, delves into a little-acknowledged element of older people’s inner lives, shares what aspects of his own aging process have had the biggest impact on his approach to psychotherapy, and reflects on life after ending his practice.

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VIDEO: Rick Hanson on the Healing Power of Refuge

Focusing on the People, Places, and Activities that Give Us Sanctuary

Rick Hanson

At last year's Networker Symposium, Rick Hanson, psychologist and bestselling author, invoked the spirit of Mr. Rogers to help attendees better acknowledge their connection with each other and savor their most inspiring experiences. Take a moment to watch this clip with Rick Hanson. You'll be glad you did.

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Making Clinical Wisdom a Daily Goal

Proven Strategies for Increasing Your Clinical Intelligence and Creativity

Ronald Siegel

By Ronald Siegel - The question our field faces at this point is whether the older tradition that revered self-knowledge and clinical wisdom is still relevant. In today’s more strictly regulated, bottom line-driven mental health marketplace, should we care about anything beyond symptom relief?

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Helping Therapy Clients Cope with the Reality of Death

Clinical Wisdom to Combat Fear, Anxiety, and Grief at the End of Life

Barry Jacobs

For 17 years, managing responses to death has become part of my work, whether originally my intention or not. I’ve aspired to helping families hang tough through medical crisis, but now spend some of my time hanging crepe. I’ve now accepted the variety of ways people react to their dying. All of these ways of facing death are utterly ordinary and human. Throughout it all, I've learned that as difficult and awkward as confronting death can be, this work also gives me a richer sense of my client, the cast of characters in their world, and the drama of their life.

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Three Tips for Boosting Your Clinical Wisdom

Strengthening the Therapeutic Alliance with Concern, Reflection, and Insight

Ronald Siegel

Within the older traditions originally inspired by psychoanalysis, self-knowledge had a place of honor in both treatment and training that it no longer occupies. The question our field faces at this point is whether this older tradition that revered clinical wisdom is still relevant. Here are some of the characteristics of wisdom identified by both researchers and therapists alike.

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