TIFT #23 Focus and Direction in Therapy tift Aug 03, 2021

 

How do you tell your patients what you aim to do and how it will work? The old-fashioned answer was that it depended on what therapy you were practicing. Times are changing. Today, we are more likely to try to match the therapy to the patient, but that only highlights the confusion in our...

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TIFT #22 Logic of the Unconscious Mind tift Jul 27, 2021

 

It is not only interesting, but practically helpful for the clinician to have a sense of how the unconscious mind works. Since something like 95% of our thinking goes on there, it must be pretty important. I’m approaching the question from the point of view of biology, that is, the...

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TIFT #21 Adolescent Development tift Jul 20, 2021

 

Continuing on the theme of how important development is to the clinician, let’s review some developmental issues in adolescence, which can now be considered to go on until around age 25, when, as a parent wryly observed, "parental IQ begins to move back up to normal." First,...

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TIFT #20 Developmental Diagnosis tift Jul 13, 2021

 

Increasingly, I have been thinking of EMPs, entrenched maladaptive patterns, as having been invented by an “inner child” to solve a critical problem. I have always thought development was important, but experience has taken me further in that direction. At this point,...

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TIFT #19 Attachment and Anorexia Nervosa Jul 06, 2021

 

 

A blog reader in her late 30s asked how attachment issues might be related to her recent symptoms of anorexia nervosa. As she has resolved painful memories of sexual trauma she has experienced more distress about relationships. She reports: “I just don’t think I matter...

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TIFT #18 A Milestone for Psychotherapy Integration tift Jun 29, 2021

 

In TIFT #14, I talked about my personal goal to see the psychotherapy integration movement turn from seemingly endless exploration to seeking consensus. At SEPI's 37th Annual Meeting in June, three of us surprised even ourselves in a Zoom session as we arrived at a core consensus...

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TIFT #17 Bringing Emotion Into the Room tift Jun 22, 2021

 

This topic is coming into view for a reason. The Pilot group in the Howtherapyworks Training Program has just finished the first trimester on theory and, in our next term, will be working on therapy skills and technique. In this post, I want to use the concepts of Entrenched...

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TIFT #16 Failed Rites of Passage tift Jun 15, 2021

 

Not everyone of adult chronological age feels or functions like a full adult. This TIFT is about those individuals. I suppose every therapist has a personal list of “syndromes” or patterns they recognize but don’t find in the literature. This is one I have found useful...

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TIFT #15 The Power of Words tift Jun 08, 2021

 

Words are amazingly precise

A patient in her 30s was defending her mother as she heavily blamed herself for her ongoing failure to function. She described how her motherwas sometimes very supportive, buthad been critical and harsh when told of the patient’s plan to attend her...

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TIFT #14 Breaching the Silos of Psychotherapy tift Jun 01, 2021

 

The pathway starts by narrowing our view to precisely what psychotherapy aims to treat. As discussed in TIFT #11, this leads to identifying Entrenched Maladaptive Patterns (EMPs), as the basic units of pathology treatable in psychotherapy. From there,we bring in evolutionary biology,...

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TIFT #13 The Role of Learning May 25, 2021

 

In recent posts, I have talked a lot about general application of two change mechanisms, Extinction and Memory Reconsolidation, both implicated in research on how learned fear can be “unlearned” or suppressed. I have been a bit vague about a third foundational change mechanism,...

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TIFT #12 On Resistance May 18, 2021

 

The phenomenon of resistance turns out to be more central and more profoundly embedded in the work of psychotherapy than is sometimes recognized. Freud saw this when he said that psychoanalysis is the analysis of resistance. He also gave a clue as to why it has taken a long time to realize...

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