Archives for Depression

Addiction

Therapists: Could A Medical Condition Be The Cause Of Your Client’s Mental Illness?


A well-trained and dedicated medical doctor will consider whether or not there is an emotional component possibly triggering a physical issue, such as stress in the case of fatigue. But often, those in the mental health field, especially psychotherapists, might not evaluate and rule out medical or other issues in the case of a client presenting with a mental illness.

In training sessions with interns and therapists-in-training, I emphasize the importance of doing a comprehensive evaluation before diagnosing—and doing therapy with—a client. I explain that when it comes to a mental health evaluation it is as vital for therapists to determine which factors are contributing to or causing mental illness, whether that mental illness is mild or more severe.

Yet many therapists jump right into talk therapy at the first or second visit; not everyone in private practice examines medical records or asks their clients to get blood-work done.
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anxiety

Mindfulness–Reach Beyond Your Turbulent Mind

We're continuing our discussion of the intersection of spirituality and therapy with psychotherapist Tanchum (Tani) Burton. Tani is a rabbi and educator whose approaches to therapy and spirituality are relevant for an increasing number of clients and students.

Welcome back, Tani. You are a student of Rebbe Nachman of Breslov, whose powerful teachings we have frequently blogged about on the Therapy Soup blog. Can you tell us about the (free) classes you are currently teaching at BreslovCampus.com called The Chassidic Law of Attraction?

I’m giving a course on one of Rebbe Nachman’s famous stories, known in English as “the Sophisticate and the Simpleton."

This story shows us a path towards—and away from—true wealth, joy and growth in the analogy of the main characters, who are simple and complicated, satisfied and restless, joyous and miserable respectively.

The challenge and opportunity for us is that we all have elements of both characters, and, when we can recognize which one is operating, we can readjust and reboot our lives for the better.
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Addiction

Meditation: Benefits…And Dangers?

C.R. writes: A friend of mine's son left his home in Israel to travel through India and Nepal and returned shortly before the recent earthquake. He had trekked with his friends, searching for enlightenment, but returned home with a parasitic infection, feeling weak and also disillusioned.

He described what he saw as the hypocrisy of some of the gurus and yogis he met (he called them "cash-rakers") and told how some of the Westerners who flocked to them seemed to magnify their worst personality traits after time spent following certain meditative practices.

His email to me said: "They become intolerant of anyone who disturbs their "bliss", and they are like addicts being hooked on their drug," he told me. "Nothing bothers them unless it messes with their personal comfort and they seem to become really short on compassion."

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anxiety

If They Don’t Call Or Text You Back, Do They Hate You?

Sometimes it can be hard to put yourself in someone else's shoes and see things from their perspective, especially if it concerns your relationship with them. Here's a thought exercise for those who feel rejected when good friends are too busy to text or call or see them for a short period of time:
Imagine your busiest day ever.
You have to wake up over an hour earlier than normal because you have a big project due at work, which includes making a presentation, something you're not totally experienced at, and you went to bed in the wee hours because you were working on another project.
You don't have time to finish your coffee. (No coffee!)
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anxiety

Getting Focused On Life, Feelings, Hopes: A Therapy Tool

In recent comments, Lorr, a reader asked to see an example of a personal perspective paper, a therapy tool that can benefit clients who struggle with articulating their experience.

Lorr asks:

I think the PPP is a great idea, I read about it in your book. Do you have a format or samples? I’m not sure how to get started.

How is the PPP different from a biography?

A biography, or autobiography, can tell the events in a person's life, without the inner experience. A PPP is more focused on what these events felt like and how they impacted the person's emotions and his own insights into his challenges.
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anxiety

TMS (Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation) For Depression

In 2011 we interviewed John Elder-Robison, author of two bestselling books about being on the autism spectrum, Look Me In The Eye and Be Different. On his blog, John describes his experience with TMS, Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation, and the dramatic changes which occurred with this treatment.

In the past few years, the use of TMS has exploded, and
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