A year ago today, we launched the Networker Daily—a blog that we hoped would be a source of digital caffeine for therapists every morning. We wanted to strengthen the sense of connection we already have with you and, along the way, inform, educate, and inspire the whole Networker community with news of the latest happenings in Therapy World. Now it’s 12 months and over 300 blogs later. While we’ve received plenty of fan mail, we’ve also gotten more than a few signals that we’ve provided too much of a good thing. Read More
It’s no secret that psychotherapy has had an image problem in the media. So when The New York Times Magazine asked trauma expert Bessel van der Kolk if it could have a journalist follow him around for a month to observe his work, it seemed like a golden opportunity to present the latest advances in trauma treatment in one of mainstream journalism’s most highly respected forums. Read More
Question: I keep hearing that journaling has many benefits for clients. I like the idea, but I’m not sure where to start. How can I integrate journaling into my practice? Read More
For many traumatized clients, even beginning to explore a traumatic event with their therapist can be an act of bravery. According to Janina Fisher, author of Sensorimotor Psychotherapy, in order for clients to take this first step, they need first to be empowered.
Sometimes psychoactive medication can work wonders with agitated young clients in the throes of a psychological emergency. But psychiatrist Robert Hedaya, an expert in alternative psychotherapy and founder of the Whole Psychiatry methodology, is concerned with how little we know about the effects of meds on the brains of children and teens. Read More
Trying to get in the door with provocative, therapy-savvy adolescents can be a challenging task for even the most seasoned of therapists. Some adolescent clients are masters at putting up the invisible force field while pushing our buttons, or telling us what we want to hear and side-stepping responsibility. Through the years, I’ve developed several engagement strategies that I regularly use, singly or in combination, that have consistently helped me to establish a therapeutic alliance with even the toughest teen client. Read More
While at first glance, 21st-century adolescents appear impossibly cool–cooler than we could have ever been ourselves–teens today are running hot. They’re not just hormonally hot, but hot with cultural forces that have redefined the nature of their consciousness and experience of selfhood. Millennium kids live in a context that spawns fragmentation, what I call a “divided-self” experience: cool and often cruel on the surface, they hide surprisingly healthy passions beneath. Read More
Most therapists learn couples therapy after they get licensed–through workshops and by trial and error. Most specialize in individual therapy, and work with couples on the side. So it’s not surprising that the only form of therapy that received low ratings in a famous national survey of therapy clients, published in 1996 by Consumer Reports, was couples therapy. The state of the art in couples therapy isn’t very artful. I’ll start with beginners’ mistakes and then describe how couples therapy can go south, even in the hands of experienced therapists. Read More
The sensations of doom or dread or panic felt by anxiety sufferers are truly overwhelming. But what clients don’t know when they start taking meds is the unacknowledged cost of relying solely on pills: they’ll never learn some basic methods that can control or eliminate their symptoms without meds. A therapist armed with methods for addressing these clusters can offer her anxious client the promise of relief for a lifetime, if she knows which of these “10 best” techniques work for which symptoms, and how to use them.
By the end of the hour, even when we begin with her raging and sobbing, Jenna usually leaves more cheerfully. She’s much less reactive than when she entered, and, best of all, we’re more in sync. When I’m able to be present in this way, my cooler, more regulated brain lowers the emotional temperature of her hot head. Over the year or so that we’ve been meeting regularly, she’s allowing me to comfort her more and more, using me more effectively for soothing. This is the wonder of what I call Time In. Read More