Psychotherapy Articles

Overcoming 3 Common Obstacles in Therapy

Saturday, November 15th, 2014

Overcoming 3 Common Obstacles in TherapyIf you’re new to therapy, you may not know what to expect. To help you make the most of the process, we asked seasoned clinical psychologist Ryan Howes, Ph.D, to share the three biggest obstacles in therapy along with how to overcome each one.

How Mindful Analogies Can Help Kids in Therapy

Friday, October 31st, 2014

Kids in TherapySchool-aged children (6 to 11 years) often wonder why they are sitting in your office for therapy. Many thoughts and emotions are associated with coming to a mental health provider’s office, including curiosity, anxiety and even fear. In order to help kids deal with whatever may be bringing them to therapy, it’s important that they understand why they may need such a service.

Kids are most receptive to messages that are age-appropriate and stated in ways that they can make sense of and understand. For elementary school-aged children, a mindful analogy is often an excellent tool to employ. Analogies help children make sense of concepts that often aren’t easily explained.

10 Introductory Questions Therapists Commonly Ask

Friday, October 24th, 2014

10 Introductory Questions Therapists Commonly AskTherapy is about the fine art of asking directive questions. So what should you expect from your first appointment with a counselor, social worker or psychologist?

The answer is simple: You should expect easy, brain-expanding questions, questions and more questions. A “change map” (often called “treatment goals”) is then created to guide you in solving the problems that are currently plaguing you.

Here are 10 of the more typical questions a psychotherapist will ask to prime your mental pump for positive change during the counseling process. Following the question is an example of what it might sound like.

Reasons for Living: World Mental Health Day

Friday, October 10th, 2014

Reasons for LivingReasons for living never come cheap
Even your best ones can put me to sleep
What I am saying, or trying to say
Is that there must be a better way

~ Duncan Sheik

I have bipolar II disorder, which means the depressive side is far more prominent than the manic one.

Recently, when I mentioned my suicidal ideation to my psychiatrist, he challenged me to come up with five reasons to live, write them down and put them where I could see them.

Mental Health & Happiness: World Mental Health Day

Thursday, October 9th, 2014

Mental Health & Happiness: World Mental Health DayOctober 10 is World Mental Health Day and the World Health Organization (WHO) has declared the 2014 focus to be schizophrenia. The people at the William Glasser Institute – US (WGI-US) took to heart Dr. Glasser’s mandate that society treat mental health as a public health issue. When we do that, the focus is on prevention and mental health rather than treatment, psychopharmacology and mental illness.

Most people understand the steps they can implement to improve their physical health. WGI-US is geared toward helping people understand the habits they can develop that will improve their mental health. So on October 10, while other organizations are focusing their efforts on raising awareness for mental illness, WGI-US will be providing 24-hour programming on prevention, mental health, resilience and happiness.

7 Ways Smartphones Can Harm Your Relationship

Saturday, October 4th, 2014

7 Ways Smartphones Can Harm Your Relationship“We were texting back and forth about a project we were working on together. Gradually, the texts became a little more familiar. Over time we started sharing more, and … I guess you could say I’m involved in an emotional affair. I want to stay married, but I feel like I love this other person.”

I have heard some version of this explanation several times over the last year alone. In just the last few months, 80 percent of my new couples cases in therapy have centered on emotional affairs perpetuated through electronic communications. In every instance, a smartphone facilitated more frequent and ongoing connection than a traditional computer or laptop.

When Your Child Doesn’t Want to Go to Therapy (But Needs To)

Thursday, October 2nd, 2014

When Your Child Doesn’t Want to Go to Therapy (But Needs To)Going to therapy is hard enough for adults. Stigma stops many of us from picking up the phone and making an appointment. Plus, therapy is hard work. It often requires revealing our vulnerabilities, delving into difficult challenges, changing unhealthy patterns of behavior and learning new skills.

So it’s not surprising that kids might not want to go either. This resistance only escalates when they misunderstand how therapy works. “Many children are afraid or nervous to go to therapy, especially if they have the belief that they are in trouble or because they are ‘bad,’” said Clair Mellenthin, LCSW, a child and family therapist.

Therapists 2014: The Intersection between Clinician, Business Savvy & Personal Brand

Friday, September 26th, 2014

Therapists 2014: The Intersection between Clinician, Business Savvy & Personal BrandIn October 2009, I wrote my first piece in a series for Psych Central on the changing landscape of therapists online. Psychotherapists Unmasked on the Internet reflected upon a conversation I’d had with my psychiatrist father five years prior, who gave me an earful around the ethics of having my picture up on my website.

What he didn’t realize at that time was that websites were becoming an important marketing tool in our profession and that a move toward therapist demystification was occurring. A hearty discussion among many in our field around how to navigate it all was under way.

Introducing Psychoanalysis Now

Tuesday, September 23rd, 2014

Introducing Psychoanalysis Now

There aren’t enough voices online that share the benefits and rich insights that modern psychoanalysis has to …

Introducing Hollywood Therapy

Tuesday, September 16th, 2014

Introducing Hollywood Therapy

The lives behind the people who create, write, produce, direct and act on TV shows and movies can be complicated and stressful. Reputations hang in the balance with every new project, and the pressure to succeed and project a “perfect” life is intense and never-ending.

What are the kinds of unique challenges such creative people in Hollywood face? How do they differ from “normal” people’s lives? Is there anything their stories can teach us??

How Somatic Therapy Can Help Patients Suffering from Psychological Trauma

Friday, September 12th, 2014

How Somatic Therapy Can Help Patients Suffering from Psychological TraumaWhatever happens in our lives impacts our mind either consciously or unconsciously. Sometimes events — such as the unexpected death of a loved one, illness, fearful thoughts, near-death accidents or experiences — result in traumas. Psychological trauma causes damage to the psyche that occurs as a result of a severely distressing event.

How Somatic Psychotherapy Helps

Somatic psychotherapy is one of the best ways to help patients suffering from psychological traumas cope, recover and live a normal life.

Introducing Private Practice Kickstart

Monday, September 8th, 2014

Introducing Private Practice Kickstart

As the online world has grown, so have the potential pitfalls a psychotherapist can make while navigating this increasingly interconnected landscape. But with pitfalls also come wonderful new opportunities to grow and market your private practice online.

There are so many business and marketing aspects to your clinical private practice, but few of them are discussed in much depth in most graduate school programs. This leaves new practitioners searching for the basics of business and marketing on their own.

But search no more. We’re happy to be bringing two of the pros in this area to the Psych Central family with a new blog called Private Practice Kickstart. If you’re a clinician or professional psychotherapist, you’re going to want to put this blog on your “must read” list.

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