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worry tree diagram

The Worry Tree Decision Tool

Fellow blogger Skinny Hobbit recently mentioned a technique I hadn’t heard of before, the worry tree, so I wanted to look into it a little more. Worry is related to but not the same as anxiety. Worry is a thinking process that is focused around problems that may arise in the future, which can then …

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Compassion-focused therapy: threat, drive, and caregiving systems

What Is… Compassion-Focused Therapy

In this series, I dig a little deeper into the meaning of psychology-related terms. This week’s term is compassion-focused therapy. Compassion-focused therapy (CFT) was developed by Paul Gilbert and draws on compassion to eliminate suffering, including shame and self-criticism. The theoretical basis spans a number of fields and incorporates both Western and Eastern philosophies. Part …

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Mental Health @ Home pop-up guest blog

EMDR Therapy by Johnzelle Anderson (Guest Post)

EMDR Therapy Francine Shapiro is a legend in the mental health community. She made the groundbreaking discovery that launched the EMDR therapy movement in 1987. EMDR stands for Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing Therapy.  Shapiro didn’t set out to create a new therapeutic technique; in fact, she was on the path to becoming a poet until a diagnosis …

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illustration of two heads with question marks moving between them

Therapist-Speak Pet Peeves

When any mental health professional is first getting started in their career, one of the things they need to do is find their therapeutic voice.  That therapeutic voice can vary a lot from one professional to another, and there’s a tendency to settle into and get very comfortable with it.  Some people will use more …

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What Is... Series (Insights into Psychology)

What Is… Exposure and Response Prevention

In this series, I dig a little deeper into the meaning of psychological terms.  This week’s term is exposure and response prevention. Exposure and response prevention (ERP) is a type of cognitive behavioural therapy used to treat obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD).  It’s similar to prolonged exposure therapy, which is used in anxiety disorders and PTSD, …

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Drilling down to core beliefs in CBT - forms they may take, and questions to uncover them

Drilling Down to Core Beliefs in CBT

Core beliefs are the underlying beliefs that we have about the self, others, and world, as well as the future. They arise as a result of the experiences we’ve been through, including trauma.  Forms that core beliefs take They are held as absolutes, and tend to be expressed using words like “always” or “never”. They can …

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What Is... Series (Insights into Psychology)

What Is… Psychodynamic Psychotherapy

In this series, I dig a little deeper into the meaning of psychological terms. This week’s term is psychodynamic psychotherapy. Psychodynamic psychotherapy is a type of talk therapy that does a deep dive into the past to help uncover what’s going on in the unconscious mind in order to figure out problems in the person’s life. It’s …

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Finding Wise Mind in DBT

Dialectical behaviour therapy (DBT) has a lot of useful concepts, but one of my favourites is wise mind. Wise mind is the area of overlap between our emotional mind and our reasonable/rational/logical mind. Emotional mind deals in feelings, while reasonable mind deals in facts and evidence. Neither emotion mind nor reasonable mind is wrong or invalid, …

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Setting Sail with the ACT Life Compass

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) is a type of psychotherapy that takes the stance that avoidance and resistance to internal experiences identified as negative is what causes cognitive distress. To resolve distress, ACT suggests that we need to employ strategies like mindfulness, de-fusion from our thoughts, and recognizing the self as the context in which …

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What Is... Series (Insights into Psychology)

What Is… Motivational Interviewing

In this series, I dig a little deeper into the meaning of psychological terms. This week’s term is motivational interviewing. Motivational interviewing (MI) is a therapeutic communication approach. It’s often used in the field of addictions, but it’s got some very useful tidbits that are more broadly applicable to motivation for any sort of change. …

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