Topic - Challenging Clients & Treatment Populations

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We've gathered Psychotherapy Networkers most popular posts and arranged them here by topic.

How to Engage an Angry Teen

A Paradoxical Approach to Creating a Therapeutic Alliance

Victor Shklyarevsky

By Victor Shklyarevsky - "Making nice" is doomed to failure when working with too many troubled teens who might otherwise be helped. From the very first moments of the initial session, our goal is to match the teens' negative intensity: to take what such rude and dismissive clients so readily dish out and give back the same. This kind of mirroring allows them to experience the therapist as someone who can meet them where they are emotionally.

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So Your Client Doesn't Want to Connect?

The Paradoxical Effect of Trying Too Hard

Steven Shapiro

By Steven Shapiro - What stands in the way of connecting effectively? I've found that the major difficulty stems, paradoxically enough, from trying too hard. Even if they're highly motivated to get into therapy, many clients have only limited tolerance for emotional connection, interpersonal closeness, and sympathetic concern. Here are three guidelines that may help you form a solid alliance with your hard-to-reach clients.

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The Case for Alcoholics Anonymous

What Attendees Want You to Know

Mark Schenker

By Mark Schenker - Several features of AA make it ideal as an adjunct to therapy. No therapist alone can provide the kind of group support that AA makes available 24 hours a day. The process of change that occurs in AA can open up a tremendous amount of relevant clinical material, and the clinician, when properly oriented, can help resolve roadblocks and resistance that the patient encounters in pursuit of recovery.

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Diagnosing and Treating Subtle Bipolar II

A Perspective on "Depression Plus"

James Phelps

By James Phelps - Treatment for bipolar disorders used to focus on medication, but like many other mood specialists, I’ve found that most clients don’t get the help they need with medication alone, or even with established therapy approaches in combination with medication. Instead, a combination of new, lesser-known therapies plus medications has been shown to produce substantial gains in mood stabilization and daily functioning.

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On the Front Lines of Crisis Work

What Keeps a Clinician Going in High-Stakes Therapy?

Gary Weinstein

By Gary Weinstein - I've been doing crisis work for nearly 30 years. I've confronted a number of forks in my professional road, opportunities to take a less demanding route. But I've chosen to continue on this path, accompanying others who've been suddenly, often brutally, cast out of life's safety zones. The reasons I stay aren't simple, and they continue to shift and surprise me.

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Take It or Leave It

The Therapy of Carl Whitaker

Rich Simon

By Rich Simon - Carl Whitaker was family therapy’s master of the absurd. This Networker profile described him in action demonstrating his belief that the unsocialized inner world of fantasy and impulse is a source of creativity to be defended against society’s abnormal normality.

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Turning Off the Inner Anger Switch

Using Brain Science to Invest Men in Anger Management

Ron Potter-Efron

By Ron Potter-Efron - Over the past 30 years, I've spent nearly 25,000 hours counseling angry men. For many, anger is the only weapon they've ever had against feelings of powerlessness. But what I've found is that these men are fascinated by information about how anger develops in the brain, and how they're capable of literally using their own brains to calm down.

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VIDEO: New Networker Master Class Series! Overcoming Resistance with David Burns

The Secret to Better Outcomes in Less Time

David Burns, Rich Simon

According to David Burns, MD, one of the originators of CBT and an expert in treating depression and anxiety, too often therapists ignore clients’ aversion to change. So he's developed a powerful approach to overcoming client resistance — once and for all. In our new online Master Class, Overcoming Resistance with Dr. David Burns: The Secret to Better Outcomes in Less Time, you can learn how David applies his evidence-based TEAM approach to motivate clients toward change and increase positive outcomes.

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New Video Course! Overcoming Resistance with David Burns

The Secret to Better Outcomes in Less Time

Rich Simon

By Rich Simon - There’s something both inspirational and humbling about watching master therapists at work. And while it's tempting to think of them as possessing rare therapeutic gifts, it's more helpful to ask, How exactly do they do it? Find out in our new Master Class Series.

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Getting Unhooked

Optimizing Connection with Teenage Clients by Understanding Your Own Attachment Style

Martha Straus

For a child to develop, adults need to “loan” them their adult regulatory system. But being a self-aware, engaged, and compassionate therapist isn't automatic. To play our part, we must first foster our own capacity to self-regulate before we can demand it of a terrified or furious teen. Attachment is a two-way street: it’s not just about them.

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