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What to Do When Your Client Cries

If It's Not Broken, Don't Fix It

Jay Efran

By Jay Efran - How can both joyful and tragic events elicit tears? This question puzzles many clinicians, including some who are considered experts in the field of emotional expression. The problem is that few of us have received explicit training in theories of emotion. And sometimes, clinicians can feel an urge to rush in and “fix things” that aren’t broken.

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VIDEO: Helping Clients Envision Personal Transformation

...While Still Validating Their Pain

Courtney Armstrong

How do you help clients access resourceful states when they’re feeling hopeless and helpless? In this short video, trauma specialist Courtney Armstrong explains.

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Dying as a Rite of Passage

There's a Gap Between How We Hope to Die and How We Really Do

Katy Butler

By Katy Butler - There’s a gap nowadays between how we hope to die, and how we really do. More than three-quarters of Americans hope to die at home like their ancestors, but more than two-thirds die in hospitals, nursing homes, and other institutions. It doesn’t have to be this way. There’s a pathway to a peaceful, empowered death, even in an era of high-technology medicine.

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Healing After Betrayal

It Takes These Two Therapeutic Approaches

Steven Stosny

By Steven Stosny - Intimate betrayal strikes at the core of our capacity to trust and love, violating the fundamental expectation that gives us the courage to connect deeply—the belief that the person we love won’t intentionally hurt us. This requires therapists to reach a balance between validating their clients’ pain and empowering them to improve their lives.

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The Cure Myth

We Need to Start Treating Anxiety and Depression as Chronic Conditions

Margaret Wehrenberg

By Margaret Wehrenberg - I’ve begun to put aside my idealized view that unless people overcome their difficulties once and for all, therapy is somehow a failure. That perspective seems simplistic and disconnected from the realities of what psychotherapy can actually provide. Evidence continues to accumulate that many people who have anxiety and depression suffer bouts of it all their lives, even after a good response to therapy.

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VIDEO: Jack Kornfield on the Role of Ritual in Clinical Practice

Simple Rituals Can Help You Be Fully Present with Clients in Pain

Jack Kornfield

It can be difficult to leave your emotions in the consulting room at the end of the day, especially when a client's story is heartbreaking or horrifying. But being shadowed by a client's pain can leave you depleted and ultimately interfere with your ability to be present and effective in session. Jack Kornfield explains how to keep a wise and compassionate balance.

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A Rare Moment of Self-Disclosure

Revealing Ourselves to Clients

Deborah Buckwalter

By Deborah Buckwalter - The first time I saw Michael, I could barely distinguish his form as human.  A young man in his 20s, Michael had been the sole survivor of a plane crash. The sight of him was unlike anything I’d witnessed before, as was his question that left me confronting everything I'd come to believe about therapist self-disclosure.

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Battling the Opioid Epidemic in Rural America

A Spotlight on Community Mental Health in High-Need Areas

Chris Lyford

By Chris Lyford - Synthetic opioids claim an average of 91 American lives per day. But the opioid epidemic hits especially hard in rural America, where treatment options are scarce and costly, trained clinicians are in short supply, and a lack of public transportation makes it difficult to get high-quality care. Here are the stories of clinicians working in these areas.

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A New Prescription

What Role Can Therapists Play in Addressing Chronic Pain?

Howard Schubiner

By Howard Schubiner - Few people in the medical profession look at the disconnect between pain and structural abnormalities in the body. Could it be that we're attributing some of our physical pain to body disorders when the pain has an emotional source instead?

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VIDEO: Tara Brach on Facing Difficult Emotions

The Power of Deliberate Practice

Tara Brach

Our survival brain has hundreds of strategies for resisting emotional pain. But according to Tara Brach, clinical psychologist and renowned teacher of Buddhism, resisting pain only increases our suffering.

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