Therapies & Approaches

Psychotherapy vs. CBT for Chronic Pain

Pain can have a profound social and psychological impact on those who suffer from it, and also those who care for them. What can you as a counsellor, psychotherapist, or psychologist do for such a client? While “talk therapy” admittedly does not always have the same quick response time as, say, painkilling medication, it can be hugely effective in helping the chronic pain client to come to a place... »

The Benefits of Mindfulness Practice

Mindfulness interventions have been shown to be beneficial for a wide range of psychological and physical conditions such as anxiety, depression, chronic pain, personality disorders, and addictions. Controlled trials of normal populations have also demonstrated positive changes in brain function and immune response, self-awareness, perceived stress, and increase in self-compassion (Shapiro, Astin,... »

What is Acceptance and Commitment Therapy?

Acceptance and commitment therapy (usually pronounced as the word “act” rather than the initials “A-C-T”) is a form of clinical behavioural analysis developed in 1986 by psychologists Steven Hayes, Kelly Wilson, and Kirk Strosahl. Originally called comprehensive distancing, it gets its current name from one of its core messages: the injunction to accept what is out of one’s personal control and co... »

Psychological Treatments for Chronic Pain

Pain can have a profound social and psychological impact on those who suffer from it, and also those who care for them. Some of the psychosocial consequences of living with chronic pain include the tendency for sufferers to become dependent on medication and over-reliant on their families and other caregivers. Those in search of a solution to long-term pain can be inappropriate in their repeated u... »

What is mindfulness, and what is it not?

Although only recently embraced by Western psychology, mindfulness practices and techniques have been part of many Eastern philosophies, such as Buddhism, Taoism, Tai Chi, Hinduism, and most martial arts, for thousands of years. The various definitions of it revolve around bringing non-judgmental consciousness to the present experience, so it can be considered the art of conscious living. This ar... »

Treating Substance Addiction

Treating any type of substance abuse and substance addiction is challenging because they both have so many dimensions and they both disrupt so many aspects of the individual's life. Effective treatment programs typically incorporate many components, each directed to a particular aspect of the condition and its consequences. Ultimately, treatments aspire to help the individual stop using substances... »

Treating NPD in the Therapy Room

Benjamin (1996) asserted that therapy interventions for narcissism could be evaluated in terms of five categories of correct response: whether or not the intervention enhanced collaboration, facilitated learning about patterns, blocked maladaptive patterns, strengthened the will to give up maladaptive patterns, or facilitated new learning. In this article, we take each in turn. »

Psychological Interventions for Depression

Treatments (or interventions) for depression fall into one of three categories, and often several are recommended to be taken up at once. These main groupings are: medical interventions; psychological interventions and; lifestyle interventions »

Behaviour and Solution Focused Couple Therapy

The practice of couple therapy has been encouraged to incorporate a more scientific model of practice and the use of research to inform the style of therapy most appropriate to use (Whiting & Crane, 2003). As a result, the discipline of couple and family counselling is moving to an evidence based focus. A number of theoretical frameworks have attempted to conceptualise dyadic relationships. So... »

Family Therapy with Addictions

Addiction affects the whole family. Because of this, it is understandable why some would suggest that treatment should involve the whole family. It is often the case that addicted individuals seek treatment in response to a form of external pressure exerted by family members. Many therapists adopting family therapy to treat substance abuse today have broadened what constitutes family to include ot... »

Theories and Models of Supervision

Ultimately, clinical supervision is a process of individualised learning for supervisees working with clients. The systematic manner in which this individualised learning or supervision is applied is usually contained and presented in the form of a “model.” Knowledge of supervision models is considered fundamental to ethical supervision practice. There are three primary models of super... »

Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT)

Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT) is a cognitive behavioural therapy developed as a treatment for self harming, particularly in borderline personality disorder (Low et al., 2001). Underpinning ideas of DBT suggest that invalidating environments that may have occurred during upbringing can inhibit the effective development of coping methods to deal with sudden intense surges of emotion (Linehan, ... »

Pluralism: Towards a New Paradigm for Therapy

How can we move beyond ‘schoolism’ towards a paradigm that embraces the full diversity of effective therapeutic methods and perspectives? Mick Cooper and John McLeod propose a ‘pluralistic’ approach. »

Groups and Group Therapy

Group therapy is a popular mode of therapy for both therapists and clients. Group therapy is a highly effective form of psychotherapy that is based on interdependence and interaction among the group members who mutually disclose personal material (Lasky & Riva, 2006). Group psychotherapy began in the late 1800’s/early 1900’s when Joseph Pratt, a Boston physician, recognised the pos... »

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