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Philosophical Counselor Moving Practice to Online Therapy
Press Release: A practical ethics professor, Certified Counselor and Fellow of the American Association of Philosophical Practitioners with 20 years of academic teaching and research experience on three continents, Aleksandar Fatić is now part of ProvenTherapy.
Prof. Fatić specialises in life coaching for a variety of life goals, using the time-proven methodologies of practical philosophy. His main interest at the moment is the use of Epicurean ethics for philosophical counseling and life coaching. He has published 8 academic books in the various professional applications of ethics and over 100 academic papers in journals and edited books worldwide.
Another approach that Aleksandar is currently working on is the application of Confucian practical ethics to life coaching. He is currently working on a major research paper on this topic that will be available online by the end of 2013.
Aleksandar’s basic approach to working with clients is conceptualization. The method is based on the idea, advanced throughout the tradition of practical philosophy, that our reactions to events are a result of our concepts and understanding of what happens to us, and so is our ability to change our behavior and emotions.
Once we conceptualize, or re-conceptualize, our life situation, the next step is improvement, which is based on personal enhancement. Enhancement means practice and self-development by treating problems as opportunities to develop skills that can later be used across the board of other issues one comes across. Modern bioethics and other fields of practical ethics are very much focused on the concept of enhancement.
The use of conceptualization and self-enhancement allow a dramatic change of the landscape of the issues we face. Once the problems are interpreted in a different way from the one that gave rise to emotional difficulties, coaching typically takes as its main task the development of skills and focus on oneself, rather than on others: instead of judging others or feeling devastated by a loss, treachery or a lie, or by lack of love or or opportunity, one is able to focus on how to develop the quality of oneself as a person. People who use this approach start regular exercise, develop healthy eating habits, new interests, re-organize their time so as to get enough sleep, reduce their workload and manage their time and goals much more effectively. In turn, by shifting the focus from the external to the internal, greater self-appreciation arises, because it is encouraged by working on oneself. Finally, apart from allowing the achievement of better professional and personal results, the person undergoing coaching through conceptualization and enhancement solves many of the emotional and mood issues that may have their cause in the inadequacies of outlook at the problems and of treatment of oneself.
Because of his teaching and research, Aleksandar has limited time for working with clients, and he has now moved his practice entirely online, offering service through https://www.proventherapy.com.
Recent study shows that the brain can be trained in compassion!
A new study by researchers at the Center for Investigating Healthy Minds at the Waisman Center of the University of Wisconsin-Madison shows that adults can be trained to be more compassionate. The report, published Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science, investigates whether training adults in compassion can result in greater altruistic behavior and related changes in neural systems underlying compassion.
“Our fundamental question was, ‘Can compassion be trained and learned in adults? Can we become more caring if we practice that mindset?'” says Helen Weng, lead author of the study and a graduate student in clinical psychology. “Our evidence points to yes.”
In the study, the investigators trained young adults to engage in compassion meditation, an ancient Buddhist technique to increase caring feelings for people who are suffering. In the meditation, participants envisioned a time when someone has suffered and then practiced wishing that his or her suffering was relieved. They repeated phrases to help them focus on compassion such as, “May you be free from suffering. May you have joy and ease.”
Participants practiced with different categories of people, first starting with a loved one, someone whom they easily felt compassion for, like a friend or family member. Then, they practiced compassion for themselves and, then, a stranger. Finally, they practiced compassion for someone they actively had conflict with called the “difficult person,” such as a troublesome coworker or roommate.
“It’s kind of like weight training,” Weng says. “Using this systematic approach, we found that people can actually build up their compassion ‘muscle’ and respond to others’ suffering with care and a desire to help.”
Compassion training was compared to a control group that learned cognitive reappraisal, a technique where people learn to reframe their thoughts to feel less negative. Both groups listened to guided audio instructions over the Internet for 30 minutes per day for two weeks. “We wanted to investigate whether people could begin to change their emotional habits in a relatively short period of time,” says Weng.
The real test of whether compassion could be trained was to see if people would be willing to be more altruistic – even helping people they had never met. The research tested this by asking the participants to play a game in which they were given the opportunity to spend their own money to respond to someone in need (called the “Redistribution Game”). They played the game over the Internet with two anonymous players, the “Dictator” and the “Victim.” They watched as the Dictator shared an unfair amount of money (only $1 out of $10) with the Victim. They then decided how much of their own money to spend (out of $5) in order to equalize the unfair split and redistribute funds from the Dictator to the Victim.
“We found that people trained in compassion were more likely to spend their own money altruistically to help someone who was treated unfairly than those who were trained in cognitive reappraisal,” Weng says.
We carry our past with us, to wit, the primitive and inferior man with his desires and emotions, and it is only with an enormous effort that we can detach ourselves from this burden. If it comes to a neurosis, we invariably have to deal with a considerably intensified shadow. And if such a person wants to be cured it is necessary to find a way in which his conscious personality and his shadow can live together. ~ Carl Jung
Yesterday someone wrote a post on Why Positive Thinking Won’t Guarantee You Positive Results and just like they promised, today they go deeper into the topic and talk about the 7 things you should do to make positive thinking effective.
Whenever we get angry or irritated because of something people say or do to us it is so because we project our own shadows and our own darkness on to them.
Next time something negative happens and next time you come in contact with somebody you don’t quite like or maybe hate, ask yourself these questions: What is it about this person, situation that is triggering me? What is it about them that I haven’t yet accepted in me? Do I have some hidden open wounds that they touched?
Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding of ourselves. ~Carl Jung
2. Non Resistance
If you feel the presence of anger in your life, let it be there, allow yourself to feel its presence but don’t allow it to define you, don’t allow you to become you!
Say to yourself: There is anger, frustration, negativity, etc. in me and I allow it to be there without making it my own. There is anger in me but I am not the anger, I am the observer of this anger.
Nonresistance is the key to the greatest power in the universe. ~Eckhart Tolle
Accept yourself for who you are and for who you are not. Accept yourself both in the presence of positivity, progress and happiness and their absence. Accept the idea that what you dislike the most in others might be something hidden deep down within yourself, in your unconscious, something you haven’t accepted in yourself.
The difference between my darkness and your darkness is that I can look at my own badness in the face and accept its existence while you are busy covering your mirror with a white linen sheet. ~C. JoyBell C.
Forgive yourself for always believing that the enemy was outside yourself and never within you. Forgive yourself for projecting your own shadows on to the world and making it look cold, scary and frightening.
We have met the enemy and he is us. ~Pogo
5. Love and compassion
We have to learn to love and accept not only the good, bright side of us but also our dark side. Only by loving and accepting our own darkness without judging and oppressing it, we will help heal it.
Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that. ~Martin Luther King Jr.
Visualization is such a powerful tool that you can use to visualize the person you want to become, the life you want to live and the impact you want to have in the world.
The power of imagination is incredible. Often we see athletes achieving unbelievable results and wonder how they did it. One of the tools they use is visualization or mental imagery… they made the choice to create their destinies and visualized their achievements before they ultimately succeeded. ~George Kohlrieser
7. Detachment From the Outcome
Whether things will happen the way you want them to happen or not, should not matter to you that much. You now know that your happiness and your well being is not dependent on how things are on the outside but rather how things are on the inside and if you take good care of yourself and if you heal your darkness, you whole life will be healed and light will always shine on you and through you.
Detach yourself from the opinions of others; from the habit of judging or controlling others; from the past; from the need to be right and to win; from an obsession with material things. Follow your passion in life, but detach from the outcome and allow the universe to handle the details. ~Dr. Wayne Dyer
Positive thinking alone does not work and only by facing our own darkness, by accepting and loving our own shadows we will be able to get the positive results from thinking all those positive thoughts.
What are your thoughts on this? Share your insights by commenting bellow or by posting your lovely comment on the PurposeFairy Facebook Page.
Approved ProvenTherapist and Clinical Psychologist
It is usually our own inhibitions; insecurities and a pre conceived image of the self which makes us feel shy, leading to insecurity. A weakness or fear which sets in a feeling of imperfection, causing a dint to the ego or self-image results in insecurity. This self- image makes us vulnerable and we resist or shy away from other situations and people alike. People, especially the youth, go through this phase of insecurity when their ideal- self image clashes with the real-life self or when they experience disappointment too often and too recurring for them to overcome the negative situation. This youth withdraws into a shell and becomes shy or some tend to bury the disappointment with a show of aggression and bullying.
Most of the times, it is either the emotional self or the physical self which causes insecurity. Insecurity pulls down our confidence and self esteem takes a beating. Finding out what the core issue is which is causing the insecurity; it could be physical appearance like complexion, voice or lack of enough money, whatever may be the reason, the beginning to recovery will only come if we pin point the reason which brings in the insecure feeling. Insecurity also creeps in if the person is too set or rigid, inflexible with the way he/she wants to be, look or behave. In real life though, not all goes as planned and the obstinate person invariably faces disappointment and it becomes incredibly difficult to accept oneself; to face reality. Getting rid of this insecurity is many times difficult because acknowledgment comes after a very long time and insecurity being such a personal thing to each one of us; it is tougher to get rid of it. Most of us usually succumb to it, only the brave acknowledge it and seek ways and means to combat insecurity and hope for a free secure life.
Feeling shy about a new place, person or a new event is very natural reaction and it cannot be attributed to inherent shyness. Even a boisterous over confident person senses ‘butterflies in the stomach’ sensation before embarking on anything new. Insecurity stemming out of physical attributes results in shyness and low confidence level with regards to self-image, this batters the emotional levels also to a certain degree, but insecurity which has emotional reasons as it’s trigger results in emotional problems, low self esteem, depression and the like. The second needs to be addressed with a sense of urgency. Self image needs a definite mind shift and a renewed perspective of the self.
To lead a better holistically happy life, the sooner these insecurities are gotten rid of the better for us. Let us look at a few things that can be done differently to b able to overcome insecurity, it is easier said than done, but is imperative if one is determined to make the change:
Acceptance is the first step, learn to accept and like yourself the way you are. You are your own comparison and you are your own parameter. Comparing with anyone else will be futile because no two individuals are made the same way! So how can they behave or be the same? Start by accepting who you are, appreciate yourself and then you will start seeing where improvements can be made. If the beginning itself is rejection and criticism of the self then one can only see faults and imperfections and correcting so much will be an uphill task.
Stop being judgmental and critical about yourself; it only attributes to pulling down the self esteem and seeps in more insecurity. Write one good thing about yourself every day, morning and evening. Take time to look at yourself and see the good in you and why you are special and how you can make these your strengths to overcome your weaknesses.
Every small achievement of yours must first be recognized by you and you deserve a treat for every milestone crossed. Do not listen to what others have to say about you, start listening to yourself. Strictly avoid discouraging company and friends who make you feel bad or low about yourself. Seek out new friends who can teach a few good things without putting you down or being judgmental about you.
The world is a big place and we all have people who find us worthy. It is just when we start feeling worthy about ourselves is when the other person also begins to look at you with an appreciative eye. This in itself is a morale boost and uplifts the confidence levels. Change the image you have of yourself and the world automatically looks at you the way you look at yourself.
This is just the beginning, stick to the task and you are on your way to overcoming insecurity and take on new challenges in life.
A GAME CHANGER
Pat Sumlin, LMFT (DBT Certified Therapist and Clinical Trainer)
DBT is a jump start to a successful way of life. Become a student, open to learning skill building tools that will have an enduring positive impact. Become deliberate and intentional in how you approach everyday challenges. It’s about doing the work necessary to evolve, evaluate situations, elevate oneself and others, feel energized and emancipated, no longer a prisoner to the past. Instead of simply focusing on the headlines of one’s life, it’s about looking at the fine print. The story behind the story and connecting the dots.
The elements of acceptance, change, self-care, growth and healing are built into the over 70 skill building concepts, with the 4 modules; Mindfulness, Distress Tolerance, Emotion Regulation and Interpersonal Effectiveness. Learning DBT is about doing the daily practices necessary to navigate successfully in relationships and avoid being on auto-pilot. DBT offers a fingerprint that uniquely can belong to anyone who learns the skill building tools. Think of it as “Renewal of the Mind.” An active approach to problem solving and decreasing life stressors. DBT is faith and hope in action (energy/effort) that reinstates the natural organizing and communicative functions of emotions. It’s about going from survival to success to significance.
Clients who have successfully learned DBT, did so because they recognized they needed the skills to cope more effectively with one or more of the following issues affecting them personally or within the circumstances in their family:
Abusive Relationships, Academic Struggles, Acculturation, Active Passivity, ADD/ADHD, Adoption, Adult Children of Alcoholics, Alcohol Addiction, Aging, Ambivalence, Anger Management, Anxiety Disorders, Apparent Competence, Asperger’s Syndrome, Bereavement, Betrayal, Binge Eating, Bipolar, Blended Families, Breaking Negative Habits, Body Image, BPD, Bullying, Career Concerns, Caregivers, Celiac Disease, Chronic Pain/Fatigue, Chronic Worry, COPD, Co-dependency, Cognitive Impairments, Communication Breakdown, Confidence Building, Confusion, Court-Ordered Parenting Plan, Co-worker Conflict, Criminal Behavior, Custody Issues, Dating, Death/Dying, Depression, Dermatillomania, Disabilities, Dishonesty, Divorce, Domestic Violence, Drug Addiction, Dual Diagnosis, Dysthymia, Dyslexia, Eating Disorders, Emotional Abuse, Emotional Dysregulation, Empowerment, Emptiness, Empty Nest, Envy, Expressive Language Disorder, Family Conflict, Family of Origin Abuse, Fibromyalgia, Fight/Flight/Freeze, Financial Problems, Gambling Addiction, Gender Identity, Generalized Anxiety, Goal Setting, Gossip, Grief/Loss, Guilt, Hair Loss, Hearing Impairment, HIV+/AIDS, Hoarding, Hopelessness, IBS, Impostor Syndrome, Impulsivity, Inappropriate Social Skills, Indifference, In-laws, Infertility, Infidelity, Inhibited Grieving, Internalized Oppression, Insecurity, Internet Addiction, Insecurity, Invalidation, Isolation, Jealousy, Kleptomania, LGBTQ Issues, Lack of Motivation, Legal Issues, Life Transitions, Lifestyle Choices, Loneliness, Marriage Counseling, Medical Issues, Menopause, Migraines, Military Families,
Mindfulness, Miscarriage, Multiple Sclerosis, Neglect, OCD, Orthorexia, Panic Attacks, Paranoia, Parenting Disputes, Past Treatment Failures, Pathological Lying, Perfectionism, Personal Growth, Personality Disorders, Physical Abuse, PMDD, Pornography, Post-Partum Depression, Pregnancy, Pre-marital Counseling, Procrastination, Psoriasis, PTSD, Re-building Trust, Relationship Reconciliation, Rejection, Retirement Adjustment, Seasonal Affective Disorder, Schizophrenia, Self-Care, Self-Esteem, Self-Injurious Behavior, Sensory Processing Disorder, Sex Addiction, Sexual Abuse, Sexual Assault, Sexual Dysfunction, Sexual Orientation, Sleep Disorders, Smoking Cessation, Social Anxiety, Special Needs Child, STD’s, Step-Parenting, Stuttering, Suicidal Ideation, Suicide Survivor, Terminal Illness, Trauma, Trichotillomania, Undeveloped Social Skills, Unrelenting Crisis, Victim of Crime, Visual Impairment, Verbal Abuse, Veterans Re-adjustment, Weight Management, Work/Life Balance, Work Performance, Workplace Harassment.
DBT is recognized as an effective, evidence based highly practical and relevant treatment approach. Achieving a working understanding of the DBT skills disrupts the seesaw of hope and despair. If you’re like most people who are suffering, the answer is a resounding, “Yes” to learning DBT because it has universal appeal, many useful applications such as re-establishing stability, relating better to others, and functioning interdependently. DBT is first-aid for emotional pain. Transform your life today.
Suicidal thoughts and self harming behavior with negative self image and self condemnation need to be tackled… Dialectical Behavior Therapy has answer! Thanks to Pat Sumlin, LMFT, a dedicated ProvenTherapist and DBT expert, for her hard work to initiate this great service at ProvenTherapy.com.
DBT promotes self-efficacy, purpose, meaning and personal power. Gain valuable skills in order to take a bold new approach to living. Learning skills can help you to become healthier and happier. Start on the journey towards an interpersonal lifestyle that works for you vs. against you.
DBT has powerful therapeutic techniques like JADE, RUI, Fight-Flight-Freeze, to name a few. Learning DBT methods will improve confidence and strengthen your ego. Through DBT you will be able to transform your hopelessness into definite HOPE!
At the DBT sessions your Therapist will take you through the practical skills, compiled into 4 modules;
- Distress Tolerance
- Emotion Regulation
- Interpersonal Effectiveness
At ProvenTherapy.com the Dialectical Behavior Therapy Department is headed by Pat Sumlin, LMFT, an experienced DBT Certified Therapist and Clinical Trainer. Visit this page to read more about DBT and therapy process at ProvenTherapy.com.
Here’s an article by Pat on DBT
Is Heaven for real? This is really amazing!
This age-old question has been debated for centuries. Of late, the subject has been tacked in theological circles and has been extensively covered by mainstream media. Many who have had near-death experiences regularly describe the images they saw after purportedly crossing into the after-life. Who can forget Colton Burpo’s story? The young boy claims to have ascended into heaven during a near-death experience back in 2003. His story inevitably made its way into a popular book called, “Heaven Is for Real.” But Burpo isn’t alone.
|Photo Credit: LifeBeyondDeath.net||There have been similar experiences told in popular media. The latest tale comes from Dr. Eben Alexander, a neurosurgeon who, ironically, never really believed in near-death experiences before falling into a coma. In the October 15 issue of Newsweek, though, Alexander details his purported ascent to heaven and his subsequent change-of-heart.|
With a firm understanding of the human brain, Alexander had previously dismissed purported journeys outside of the earthly realm as a byproduct of what happens to human beings in the throes of trauma. However, that changed once he found himself heaven-bound. The neurosurgeon explains:
In the fall of 2008…after seven days in a coma during which the human part of my brain, the neocortex, was inactivated, I experienced something so profound that it gave me a scientific reason to believe in consciousness after death. […]
Very early one morning four years ago, I awoke with an extremely intense headache. Within hours, my entire cortex—the part of the brain that controls thought and emotion and that in essence makes us human—had shut down. Doctors at Lynchburg General Hospital in Virginia , a hospital where I myself worked as a neurosurgeon, determined that I had somehow contracted a very rare bacterial meningitis that mostly attacks newborns. E. coli bacteria had penetrated my cerebrospinal fluid and were eating my brain.
Magnetic brain stimulation reported to be effective to cure clinical depression which is an alternative to serotonin inhibitors used for drug treatment. Medical bulletin reports, “Strong magnetic stimulation of the frontal lobe of the brain can reduce symptoms of depression and does not adversely affect sleep or arousal, which is common with use of anti-depression medications.” Read more here: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/252082.php
Beta-blockers, which are commonly given to patients with cardiovascular conditions, hypertension, and anxiety, often result in sleep issues among patients. However, researchers from Brigham and Women’s Hospital have recently discovered that melatonin supplementation can improve sleep patterns among patients with hypertension who are taking beta-blockers.
Read more here: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/250864.php
Dr. MG Lazarus – Approved ProvenTherapist
SSRI drugs like Prozac takes four to six weeks to kick in to the biological system before it could produce some positive results in terms of clinical depression. The following article claims that ketamine can show immediate result within hours, which is a great news to patients as well as to clinical practitioners.
The report says, “Small amounts of the drug ketamine can immediately relieve the symptoms of chronic depression, as well as those of treatment-resistant patients within a few hours, say Yale scientists.”
See details here: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/251220.php