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Editor's Note

January/February 2018

January/February 2018
Three decades ago, doing therapy was a relatively uncomplicated affair. After graduate school, you set up shop as a family therapist, a psychodynamic healer, or a cognitive-behavioral specialist. Whichever model you adopted, you were likely to see yourself as firmly in charge of the process, with your client (or “patient”) following your lead. You, after all, were the expert. Few clinicians felt the need to explain how therapy was going to proceed, or if, indeed, it would even work. It’s a different world now.
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Therapy and Transformation

What Are We Promising Our Clients?

January/February 2018
Decades ago, trainees in our field were imbued with the notion that therapy was about transformation: big, dramatic changes in the direction of self-actualization. Was this an overpromise? And now, when the average length of therapy in the United States is less than eight sessions, is it even desired by clients anymore, or necessary for successful therapy?
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Who's Steering the Boat?

Navigating Therapy with Today's Clients

January/February 2018
Today’s clients are shifting out of their customary position of mannerly deference and asserting far more specifically what they want—and don’t want—from therapy. Increasingly, therapists are moving from the role of acknowledged expert in the room to something approaching an informed colleague. For some, it’s a sea change in professional identity, but a growing body of evidence suggests it pays off.

Tuning into Attunement

How to Harness Your Social Engagement System

January/February 2018
We all know people who have the magic touch when it comes to relating to others. They can instantly connect with strangers and put people at ease without even saying a word. Therapists with this ability have a natural advantage, so are there specific behaviors we can practice to elicit trust and openness? Luckily, the answer is yes—and Stephen Porges’s polyvagal theory provides the key.
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Consensual Nonmonogamy

When Is It Right for Your Clients?

January/February 2018
In past decades, the only alternatives to involuntary celibacy in a relationship were affairs or divorce. But more and more therapists are recognizing there’s another option: consensual nonmonogamy. Although the idea isn’t new, it’s challenging our field to see that committed, secure relationships can take many shapes and forms.

Remembering Salvador Minuchin

A Networker Tribute

January/February 2018
To be a young, intellectually curious therapist in the 1960s and ’70s was to fall under the spell of the new systems practitioners, who were redefining what psychotherapy was all about. And no one embodied this new way of practicing the clinical craft with more skill, creativity, and chutzpah than Salvador Minuchin. In light of his recent passing, we pay tribute to his influence on several generations of therapists.

Clinician's Digest

Did England's Ambitious Mental Health Care Experiment Deliver?

January/February 2018
Nearly a decade ago, England embarked on one of the largest expansions of mental health care in modern history. What can be said of the outcome of this bold experiment?

In Consultation

Keeping Couples Therapy Upbeat

January/February 2018
Keeping the difficult work of couples therapy positive and upbeat might be easier, and more effective, than you think.
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Case Study

From Weight to Well-Being: The Challenges of Treating Binge Eating Disorder

January/February 2018
Although binge eating disorder is more prevalent than anorexia and bulimia, many people still don’t get the help they need for it.

Point of View

When Less Is More: The Art of Minimalizing Our Stuff

January/February 2018
Even as many of us are drowning in material possessions, a new minimalist movement is sweeping across popular culture.
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