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Kinship Without Connection

A Special Feature from Our Family Matters Department

Mark Matousek • 4/13/2018 • No Comments

By Mark Matousek - One ordinary day last year, an email appeared from someone I didn’t know, a Jim who lived in Phoenix. It explained that his mother had found a book of mine online, realized I was looking for her ex-husband, and passed the book along to her son. Jim had read the book, done the math, and deduced that we had the same missing father. We agreed to meet three weeks later.

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VIDEO: Jack Kornfield on What Really Heals

How to Create an Invitation for Connection

Jack Kornfield • 4/4/2018 • No Comments

Trained as a Buddhist monk and clinical psychologist, Jack Kornfield has been a pioneer in bringing meditation, mindfulness, and Buddhist psychology to the West. In the following clip from his Networker keynote address, he shares how to embody a fuller spiritual wisdom in your work with clients to heal difficult emotions, create calm focus, and connect deeply with others.

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Got the Magic Touch?

Four Behaviors of Gifted Therapists and How to Cultivate Them

Dafna Lender • 2/24/2018 • 1 Comment

By Dafna Lender - We’ve now moved past the point where we rely only on intuition to elicit trust and openness. Microbehaviors occur within fractions of a second, most of them not conscious to the sender or receiver, and some greatly contribute to inspiring feelings of safety, connection, and comfort. Here are four ways these emotional messages are transmitted.

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Making Space for Race

Creating and Holding Connection with Black Teenagers

Ken Hardy • 1/23/2018 • No Comments

By Ken Hardy - Therapy with teenagers has to be about creating and holding a connection. As a therapist, I'm like a spider trying to lure my clients into a web that will support them. While I try to use the context of racism to help African American teenagers understand their situations, verbalize, and vent their feelings, I also want them to develop inner resources and tools for handling the adversity they face in more useful and productive ways.

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High Lonesome

Braving the Quest for True Belonging

Brene Brown • 12/22/2017 • No Comments

By Brené Brown - High lonesome is a type of music in the bluegrass tradition that captures the mood of isolation many people feel today, as we turn away from one another and toward blame and rage. Our challenge as a nation is to reclaim human connection and true belonging even as, more and more, we sort ourselves into antagonistic tribes. But to do that, we’ll need to choose courage over comfort.

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How Commitment Really Works

The Two Most Common Mistakes Struggling Couples Make

Gay Hendricks • 12/19/2017 • 1 Comment

By Gay Hendricks - Therapists who understand and apply two concepts about commitment—that the results you get reveal the actual commitment you've made, and to make a change in a relationship, each participant must take 100 percent responsibility for the current situation—can eliminate a great deal of energy-draining work in the treatment of couples.

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The Power of Play

How to Use a Fast Road to Connection with Children

Dafna Lender • 10/12/2017 • No Comments

By Dafna Lender - If my experience is any indication, most beginning therapists are also offered little to no basic training in clinical work with kids. Why is this? The kinds of interventions that are most effective with children are based in play. Play is a remarkably powerful therapeutic tool, backed up by cutting-edge research, and teaching families how to apply it at home can bring about profound systemic changes.

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How to Develop a Safety Plan with Suicidal Clients

A Process of Inquiry That Promotes Empathic Connection

Douglas Flemons • 9/19/2017 • No Comments

By Douglas Flemons - Suicide assessment is a high-stakes process infused with uncertainty. However, even the best scales can be unreliable when they’re completed in the midst of an emotional crisis. Rather than outsourcing your decision-making to an instrument, it's important that therapists learn how to conduct a conversational evaluation that builds on their therapeutic skills.

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5 Strategies for Forging Healthy Relationships with Others (and Yourself)

How to Make Connections for a Truly Happy Life after 50

Andrea Brandt • 8/15/2017 • No Comments

By Andrea Brandt - In this third part of a three-part series adapted from the upcoming book Mindful Aging: Embracing Your Life after 50 to Find Fulfillment, Purpose, and Joy, author and clinician Andrea Brandt looks at how a more intentional relationship with ourselves can lead to more satisfying relationships with others.

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Everyday Heroism

Philip Zimbardo Reflects on His Work on Human Connections and Positive Change

Ryan Howes • 7/10/2017 • No Comments

By Ryan Howes - Social psychologist Philip Zimbardo may be most well-known for his notorious Stanford Prison Experiment. More recently, however, he's pivoted his work to focus on human connections and positive change. He founded a clinic that helps clients push past self-imposed limits around shyness and established a program that frames heroism as a continual, everyday choice.

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