IN THIS ISSUE  


CONTACT US  

Publications

Editor: Sandra Poletto
Email: ezine@aipc.net.au
Website: www.aipc.net.au

AIPC appreciates your feedback. Please email ezine@aipc.net.au with any comments, suggestions or editorial input for future editions of Institute Inbrief.

Support Centres

Australia
Brisbane, TAS & NT
1800 353 643
Sydney
1800 677 697
Melbourne
1800 622 489
Adelaide
1800 246 324
Perth
1800 246 381
Regional NSW
& Gold Coast

1800 625 329
Regional QLD
1800 359 565

International
Singapore
1800 246 381
New Zealand
+64 9919 4512

JOIN US  

If you are not already on the mailing list for Institute Inbrief, please subscribe here.

 

AIPC Diploma of Counselling
AIPC  Bachelor of Counselling
AIPC Diploma of Community Services
AIPC Diploma of Youth Work
AIPC Master of Counselling
Mental Health Academy


FOLLOW US  

Facebook Google+ Twitter YouTube

No part of this publication may be reproduced without permission. Opinions of contributors and advertisers are not necessarily those of the publisher. The publisher makes no representation or warranty that information contained in articles or advertisements is accurate, nor accepts liability or responsibility for any action arising out of information contained in this e-newsletter.

Copyright: 2012 Australian Institute of Professional Counsellors
WELCOME  

Welcome to Edition 256 of Institute Inbrief! Therapists have long wondered how to help clients whose chronic psychological issues have been difficult to treat. Schema focused therapy is an integrative approach to treatment which combines the best aspects of cognitive-behavioural, attachment, Gestalt, object relations, interpersonal, and psychoanalytic therapies into one unified model. This edition’s featured article briefly examines the origin, definition and characteristics of this therapeutic approach.
 
Also in this edition:
  • Skills and Role of the Group Therapist
  • What Causes Depression in the Elderly?
  • Stress: Busting Six Myths
  • Social Media Updates & Much More!
Enjoy your reading!
 
Editor.
 
 
Join our community:
 
 
 
INTOstudies  
 
Bachelor and Master of Counselling
 
Semester 3, 2016 Intake – CLOSING SOON!
 
Our Semester 3, 2016 intake for our Bachelor and Master of Counselling will be closing soon.
 
Places are strictly limited in both courses, so please express your interest early.
 
The programs are all government Fee-Help approved, so you can learn now and pay later.
 
Some unique features of the programs include:
  • Study externally from anywhere in Australia, even overseas
  • Residential Schools in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane
  • [Bachelor] Save thousands on your qualification
  • [Master] Receive up to 6-months credit for prior Counselling studies
  • Start with just 1 subject
  • Online learning portal with access to all study materials, readings and video lectures
  • Learn in a friendly, small group environment.
*Residential Schools are delivered in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane for the Bachelor of Counselling.
 
You can learn more about the programs here:
 
Bachelor of Counselling: www.aipc.net.au/degree
 
 
As applications exceed available places we urge you to submit your obligation free expression of interest now.
 
 
Diploma of Counselling
 
It’s time to start loving what you do!
 
We’ve been training qualified Counsellors for over 24 years. Overwhelmingly, the number one reason people cite as why they became a Counsellor – to start loving what they do. They were stuck in a rut doing something they had no passion for, and it was dragging them down.
 
If you want a deeper understanding of yourself, and to use that knowledge to assist others overcome their challenges and start enjoying life again – then counselling is likely for you.
 
Too often we get drawn into a career that offers little personal satisfaction. Counsellors are passionate about the important work they do. They’re often someone that friends and family naturally come to for assistance. And they get immense personal reward helping others.
 
If that sounds like you, then it’s time to start pursuing your passion:
  • Learn about yourself and help others lead better lives
  • Be employed in one of the fastest industry growth sectors in the nation
  • Self-paced training, so you can fit learning around your life
  • Flexible and supported training with quality learning materials
You can learn more here: www.aipc.net.au/course_dippro.php
 
Other courses:
 
INTOnews  
 
Watch On-Demand: Free Webinar with Dr Daniel J. Siegel
 
On Saturday 20 August Mental Health Academy hosted internationally-renowned neuropsychiatrist and best-selling author Dr Daniel J. Siegel for a free webinar. The session – titled Mind: What Is It, and How Do You Make it Healthy? – addressed why a survey of over 100,000 mental health practitioners from throughout the globe revealed that over 95% have never been given even one lecture that defines the mind, and offered an Interpersonal Neurobiology (IPNB) view of the mind that has useful applications in describing a 'healthy mind.'
 
Click here to watch the recording.
INTOcounselling  
 
Schema Therapy: Origin, Definition and Characteristics
 
Have you been working as a therapist in shorter-term therapies such as cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT)? In Australia, the clients of psychologists, for example, have been able to access Medicare rebates for their therapy for a limited number of sessions. Their practitioners, in return, are strongly encouraged – if not mandated – to work in well-researched, “gold standard” therapies such as CBT; they are held accountable for certain outcomes. Yet not all clients respond equally well to therapies such as CBT, which usually include no more than 20 sessions and often less than that. What would you advocate as a therapist for the following clients?
 
Jon, a man in his 30s, underwent a short-term behavioural program of exposure combined with response prevention for his symptoms of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). Obsessive thoughts and accompanying compulsive rituals (such as checking the locks on her doors and windows 12 times before going out because of the thought that someone would enter and steal all his possessions) had commandeered his waking life for as long as he could remember. Over the course of his therapy, Jon learned to eliminate these, allowing his symptoms to abate. But as the absence of time-consuming rituals freed up his schedule, Jon had to confront the nearly total absence of a social life which had resulted from his “loner” lifestyle with OCD. Feeling flawed as a human being, Jon had since childhood been hyper-sensitive to perceived offences and rejections and had thus avoided contact with most others. While he now had far reduced OCD symptoms, he also had no social life and needed to grapple with the pattern of avoidance that was still with him post-therapy.
 
Roberta presented for treatment of her agoraphobia and panic attacks. Her CBT-for-anxiety program consisted of breathing training, attempts to dispute catastrophic thoughts, and exposure to phobic situations (graduated to become more challenging). Through this, Roberta was able to reduce her fear of having panic attacks and overcome her avoidance of many of the situations that had been too hard to face before. But some months after Roberta’s treatment ended, she noticed that she lapsed back into agoraphobia. A lifetime of depending on others had left her feeling vulnerable and incompetent. Without a driver’s licence or ability to navigate even around her neighbourhood and few money management skills, Roberta continued to depend on others to make necessary life arrangements for her. Without the ability developed to organise even simple outings (such as to the local grocery store), Roberta could not maintain her treatment gains.
 
Therapists have long wondered how to help clients like Jon and Roberta, whose chronic psychological issues have been difficult to treat. While cognitive-behavioural programs can help them reduce, or even eliminate, the presenting symptoms, the underlying disorders continue to make such clients’ lives miserable, with ripples throughout their life spheres and wider communities. Schema focused therapy (also called “schema therapy” or sometimes “schema focused cognitive therapy”) is an integrative approach to treatment which combines the best aspects of cognitive-behavioural, attachment, Gestalt, object relations, interpersonal, and psychoanalytic therapies into one unified model. This article briefly examines the origin, definition and characteristics of this therapeutic approach.
 
How it began
 
Dr Jeffrey Young and his colleagues, while working at the Center for Cognitive Therapy at the University of Pennsylvania, identified a portion of clients who saw little benefit from the standard approach. Young realised that these people typically had long-standing patterns or themes in thinking, feeling, and behaving/coping that required a different means of intervention (Pearl, n.d.). For example, CBT was found to have a high success rate in treating depression: over 60 percent had their depression lifted right after treatment. Yet one year later, 30 percent of those had relapsed (Young, Weinberger, & Beck, 2001), meaning that – as this is a typical outcome – the total numbers ultimately helped with their depression by CBT is considerably lower than what initial success rates indicate.
 
Young realised that the unsuccessfully treated clients often had underlying personality disorders and characterological issues and that there was a need to develop effective treatment regimens for them. Young labelled these deeper patterns or themes “schemas” or “lifetraps” and noted that many of the more enduring, self-defeating patterns typically began early in life (Pearl, n.d.). The patterns that he targeted in the treatments were negative, dysfunctional thoughts and feelings which had been repeated and elaborated upon by the client, posing serious obstacles for accomplishing their goals and getting their needs met.
 
Examples of schema beliefs are statements such as, “I’m not good enough”, “People will leave me”, “I’m a failure”, and “Something bad will happen”. Schemas, said, Young, could also begin in adulthood (less commonly), and they are perpetuated behaviourally through the coping styles of schema surrender, schema avoidance, and schema compensation. Schema therapy is designed to help people break these stubborn, negative patterns of thinking, feeling, and behaving and replace them with healthier alternatives (Pearl, n .d.).
 
The definition
 
As early as 1990, Young hypothesised that some of the schemas, especially those developing chiefly as a result of toxic childhood experiences, were at the core of personality disorders, less serious characterological problems, and many clinical disorders that, in the DSM-IV-TR, were called “Axis I disorders” (i.e., acute symptoms needing treatment, such as a major depressive episode, schizophrenic episodes, and panic attacks). He called these “Early Maladaptive Schemas” or “EMS”. He defined these as:
  • A broad, pervasive theme or pattern
  • Comprised of memories, emotions, cognitions, and bodily sensations
  • Regarding oneself and one’s relationships with others
  • Developed during childhood or adolescence
  • Elaborated throughout one’s lifetime and
  • Dysfunctional to a significant degree (Young, n.d.)
Thus, the self-defeating cognitive and emotional patterns that begin early in a person’s development and repeat throughout life – the EMS – constitute the context for schema therapy. Note that an individual’s behaviour is not part of the schema itself; maladaptive behaviours are said to develop as responses to a schema, so behaviours are driven by schemas, but are not part of schemas.
 
The characteristics of early maladaptive schemas
 
Even though Young believed that most schemas developed early, he acknowledged that not all did. Moreover, he also noted that not all schemas were maladaptive; some were positive (Young, n.d.). Of the list of eighteen maladaptive schemas, Young considered that clients with one or more of the four most powerfully damaging schemas – that is, Abandonment/Instability, Mistrust/Abuse, Emotional Deprivation, and Defectiveness/Shame – were clients who as children had been abandoned, abused, neglected, or rejected. These clients’ schemas are triggered in adulthood by life events which they perceive, often unconsciously, as similar to the traumatic experiences of their childhood. The triggering of a schema produces a strong negative emotion, such as grief, shame, fear, or rage.
 
Clients could have never experienced trauma and yet develop a schema, however, in that not all schemas are based in childhood trauma or mistreatment. Young also postulated that a child that had been overprotected and sheltered throughout childhood could develop a schema: in this case a Dependence/Incompetence schema. All the schema constructs generated by Young are destructive, and most, said Young, are caused by toxic experiences repeated regularly throughout childhood leading, cumulatively, to a full-blown schema.
 
Young considered that schemas beginning early on were often reality-based. That is, a child might not know why his parents were cold and emotionally withholding, but he would be right about the emotional climate and the treatment that resulted from it. The maladaptive or dysfunctional aspect of a schema comes to be seen later, when clients perpetuate their schemas in their interactions with others even though their perceptions are no longer accurate. For the example given, the coldly treated child may, as an adult, enter his workplace and barely be greeted by an unsmiling receptionist, whom he then perceives “does not like me”. In reality, the receptionist may be hugely busy and preoccupied, but the adult may interpret the lack of warm attention as reflecting the same cold indifference his parents displayed toward him.
 
Also, we should note that schemas are said to be “dimensional”, having different levels of severity, pervasiveness, and permanence. The more severe the schema is, the greater the number of situations which activate it. Extreme schemas – such as when both parents wound a child in a particular way – let’s say, through abuse – can lead to an adult who believes that he or she can trust no one, as everyone is out to use him/her for their own selfish ends.
 
Conversely, a parent who overemphasised status or appearance as a way of gaining approval from others – but only did this occasionally – may be at the core of that child sometimes but not always being anxious about making life decisions; the relevant schema will probably not be activated in the face of every decision (Young, n.d.).
 
This article was adapted from the upcoming Mental Health Academy course, “Schema Focused Therapy: The Basics”.
 
References
 
Pearl, M. (n.d.). What is schema therapy? Schematherapy-nola.com. Retrieved on 8 June, 2016, from: hyperlink.
 
Young, J.E. (n.d.). Schema therapy: Conceptual model. Retrieved on 8 June, 2016, from: hyperlink.
 
Young, J.E., Weinberger, A.D., & Beck, T.A. (2001). Cognitive therapy for depression. In D.H.Barlow (Ed.), Clinical handbook of psychological disorders. A step-by-step treatment manual (3rd. edition) (pp.264-308). New York: Guilford Press.
 
Course information:
 
 
Join our community:
 
 
 
INTOarticles  
 
Skills and Role of the Group Therapist
 
Group therapy provides a unique and important way for clients to learn about themselves and their relationships, to gain confidence, develop new skills and abilities, and to give and receive support and feedback from others. For many types of problems, group therapy is the treatment of choice. In this article we overview skills and role of the group therapist.
 
Click here to continue reading this article.
 
 
What Causes Depression in the Elderly?
 
As people age, they experience many changes to their physical health, lifestyles, and circumstances which affect their ability to function. Most of the changes have been identified as risk factors that make an older adult more vulnerable to depression. We can group the changes into three chief categories: changes in physical health or functioning, changes in mental health, and changes in circumstances or social support.
 
Click here to continue reading this article.
 
More articles: www.aipc.net.au/articles
INTOdevelopment  
 
Mental Health Academy – First to Knowledge in Mental Health
 
Get unrestricted access to over 300 hours of professional development education in mental health, including specialist courses and on-demand videos.
 
Mental Health Academy is Australia’s leading provider of professional development for mental health practitioners. MHA’s all-inclusive memberships give you instant access to over 300 hours of learning – including videos presented by internationally-renowned experts in counselling, psychology and mental health.
 
Topics explored include: Evidence-based therapies, mindfulness, CBT, focused psychological strategies, children & adolescents, relationship counselling, motivational interviewing, depression & anxiety, addictions, trauma, e-therapy, supervision, ethics, plus much more.
 
Benefits of becoming a premium member:
  • Over 110 specialist courses to choose from
  • Over 100 hours of video learning on-demand
  • CPD endorsed by leading industry associations
  • Videos presented by international experts
  • New programs released every month
  • Huge range of topics and modalities
  • Online, 24/7 access
Learn more and join today: www.mentalhealthacademy.com.au/premium
INTOconnection  
 
Have you visited Counselling Connection yet? There are hundreds of interesting posts including case studies, profiles, success stories, videos and much more. Make sure you too get connected (and thank you for those who have already submitted comments and suggestions).
 
Stress: Busting Six Myths
 
Stress can be defined as any pressure, demand, or threat placed on an organism (say, a human being) that causes a need to re-establish balance or “equilibrium”. The Oxford Dictionary online adds that stress is “a state of mental or emotional strain or tension resulting from adverse or demanding circumstances.” The notion of stress has become a common word in our modern lexicon, but how much do most of us really know about it?
 
Click here to read the full post and leave a comment.
 
Get new posts delivered by email! Visit our FeedBurner subscription page and click the link on the subscription box.
 
INTOtwitter  
 
Follow us on Twitter and get the latest and greatest in counselling news. To follow, visit http://twitter.com/counsellingnews and click "Follow".
 
Featured Tweets
Note that you need a Twitter profile to follow us. If you do not have one yet, visit http://twitter.com to create a free profile today!
 
INTOquotes  
 
"There is so much inherent goodness in people that if they aren’t inhibited by traumas and are given half a chance, it shines through."
 
~ Leonard Bernstein
INTOseminars  
 
Many students of the Diploma of Counselling attend seminars to complete the practical requirements of their course. Seminars provide an ideal opportunity to network with other students and liaise with qualified counselling professionals in conjunction with completing compulsory coursework.
 
Seminar topics include:
  • The Counselling Process
  • Communication Skills I
  • Communication Skills II
  • Counselling Therapies I
  • Counselling Therapies II
  • Legal & Ethical Framework
  • Family Therapy
  • Case Management
Click here to access all seminar timetables online.
 
To register for a seminar, please contact your Student Support Centre.
 
Course information:
 
 
Join our community:
 
 
 

AIPC
47 Baxter Street | Locked Bag 15
Fortitude Valley QLD 4006
(07) 3112 2000 (Australia)
1-800-657-667 (Toll Free)
+61-7-3112-2000 (International)