Utilization: Concept #1

July 2, 2017 by  
Filed under Ericksonian Therapy, General

During a recent meeting of the Milton H. Erickson Institute of Phoenix, Marilia Baker turned to me and said, “Don’t you think that just as ‘suggestion’ is the golden rule of hypnosis, ‘utilization’ is the golden rule of Ericksonian hypnosis?” She then proposed that in Ericksonian hypnosis these two concepts are conjoined. Indeed, utilization itself […]

The Most Important Skill in Therapy

March 29, 2017 by  
Filed under General

If there is any single skill that might be used to summarize what the most effective Ericksonian therapists are able to do really well, it would be the general ability to connect with others in deep and compelling ways. Whether you are describing the therapist’s use of effective communication, interpersonal flexibility, skillful observation, or love […]

The Trans-Mental and Trans-Temporal Problem Solver

December 15, 2016 by  
Filed under General

I just recently delivered a talk at the 2016 Brief Therapy Conference in San Diego and made a promise to my audience that I would send a one page summary of the talk and attach a link to the slides, which can be found at my website. Milton Erickson often warned his students of the […]

Can You Be Like Erickson?

October 15, 2016 by  
Filed under General

For my keynote address at the Erickson Congress in Puerto Vallarta, I shared a memorable experience when I was confronted with the urgent needs of a former patient of Milton Erickson. The man was experiencing a full-blown psychotic episode. He had the symptoms of paranoid schizophrenia and was absolutely insistent that he must “find Erickson” […]

Why not fix all of your problems?

June 22, 2016 by  
Filed under General

During my earliest days of studying Milton Erickson’s work, there were many fascinating premises which I could not understand. One of these was his warning that you need to leave some small component of the clinical problem in place. In other words, it is a mistake to strive for full clinical success (to learn more […]

Altering Mindsets in Addition to Altering States of Consciousness

September 14, 2015 by  
Filed under Ericksonian Therapy

Those who use hypnosis for clinical problem solving are often trained in the observation and management of states of consciousness. While changes in consciousness can help produce new opportunities for learning and performance on therapeutic tasks, it is a change in mindset that governs the overall response of a person to his or her life. When […]

Plumbing the Depths of Power

November 4, 2014 by  
Filed under Cognitive Therapy, General, Soapbox

I prefer to see therapy not as a method or a technique, but as the shared pursuit of power, power that paradoxically results from penetrating and excavating, like an archaeologist, the places within which powerlessness resides, which are usually the very places that most of us abhor and attempt to escape from. 24 year old […]

Tell Me a Story: The Power of Storytelling

June 21, 2014 by  
Filed under General, Soapbox

“Information brings knowledge, but stories bring wisdom.” These words guide my clinical work more than any others, for I have learned that it is the power of the patient’s story, rather than that of the patient’s dogged data, that defines and informs psychotherapy’s curative properties. Or, as Mark Twain once put it, “Never let the […]

Cultivating Emotional Mindfulness: What, Why, and How…

March 13, 2014 by  
Filed under Cape Cod Institute, General

The ability to mindfully experience, regulate, and respond to one’s feelings is essential to mental health and well-being.  Yet problems managing emotion abound and play a central role in most psychiatric disorders.  Regardless of diagnosis, many people seeking treatment have some degree of difficulty being present with and making good use of their emotional experience. […]