Fantastic Email–“I was planning to commit suicide the day you left a copy of Feeling Good at my front door!”

Fantastic Email–“I was planning to commit suicide the day you left a copy of Feeling Good at my front door!”

Dear friends and colleagues,

I thought you might enjoy this wonderful email I received several days ago, and publish here with the permission of Dr. Robert Schachter, from New York city.

David

Dear David,

I want to share an experience that almost made me cry.  A woman from Nebraska had tracked me down on the internet to treat her mid-20’s daughter who was living in New York.  She said that she had been profoundly affected by Feeling Good: The New Mood Therapy.

She went on to say that when her daughter was in preschool, the nursery school teacher was fired and had been very distraught. She had liked this woman and felt very bad for her. So, she went to her house but the woman would not come to the door. She then went home and took her copy of Feeling Good and left it on the woman’s doorstep.

Their paths diverged, but some time later she bumped into her.  The woman came up to her and said, “I just want to thank you.  I want you to know that you saved my life!  My father had committed suicide and the day that you came by, I was planning my own suicide.  That book saved my life.

Thank you.”

Then my patient’s mother said, “God Bless Dr. Burns.”

Bob
Robert Schachter, Ed.D.
Licensed  Psychologist

 

If you are reading this blog on social media, I appreciate it! I would like to invite you to visit my website, http://www.FeelingGood.com, as well. There you will find a wealth of free goodies, including my Feeling Good blogs, my Feeling Good Podcasts with host, Dr. Fabrice Nye, and the Ask Dr. David blogs as well, along with announcements of upcoming workshops, and tons of resources for mental health professionals as well as patients!

Once you link to my blog, you can sign up using the widget at the top of the column to the right of each page. Please forward my blogs to friends as well, especially anyone with an interest in mood problems, psychotherapy, or relationship conflicts.

Thanks! David

Another Cool Video for You! The “Niceness” Disease!

Another Cool Video for You! The “Niceness” Disease!

Here is another cool short video from Jill Levitt, PhD, who is the Director of Training at the Feeling Good Institute in Mt. View, California, and Taylor Chesney, PhD, who is he Director of Training at the Feeling Good Institute in New York City. But you might enjoy it more if you read the material below the video first!

 

Scenes from a Sunday hike:

 

I have always emphasized the importance of personal healing for therapists, as part of their development as psychotherapists and their growth as human beings. In this video, Dr. Taylor Chesney remembers one of my Sunday hikes when she did some personal healing and came to understand the Hidden Emotion Technique in much greater depth. Something sudden and unexpected happened that had a profound effect on Taylor’s life.

Because Dr. Levitt wasn’t there when Taylor and I were doing our work, I will share a tad of additional information that might illuminate Taylor’s experience while hiking. First, Taylor asked if I could help her with some sudden anxiety she had about transitioning to her private practice at the end of her post-doctoral training. She was extremely anxious and had negative thoughts like, “I won’t get any referrals,” and “My practice will be a failure,” and “I won’t be able to help anyone,” and things along those lines.

Taylor could easily identify the distortions in her thoughts, which included Fortune Telling (making arbitrary negative predictions), Discounting the Positive (since she was highly regarded by everyone in our training program and was already getting many referrals, and had tons of patients who were doing great because of her superb skills), Emotional Reasoning (I feel anxious, so I must be in danger,) and All-or-Nothing Thinking (viewing a private practice as either a smashing success or a total failure) to mention just a few of the cognitive distortions in her negative thoughts. However, Taylor simply could not come up with positive thoughts that effectively crushed the negative thoughts, so she continued to believe them, even though on some level she could see that the negative thoughts were simply not true. She kept clinging to the irrational belief that she’d get no referrals and be totally ineffective in her clinical work, and so forth.

Then I asked myself “why” Dr. Chesney was being so unreasonable, since she was really a sweet, smart, and enthusiastic individual. I began to think about the Hidden Emotion Model, which can be incredibly helpful in the treatment of anxiety, especially when patients seem stuck. The idea behind the Hidden Emotion Technique is that only “nice” people develop anxiety disorders, and it’s often because of some hidden feeling or conflict that the patient has not brought to conscious awareness. The Hidden Emotion or conflict is NOT something that’s buried in the past, it’s something that’s buried in the present–some ordinary thing that’s bugging the patient right now, but you can’t seem to “remember” what it is.

Sometimes the suppressed feeling is a negative one, like anger, but sometimes it can be a positive feeling, which turned out to be the case with Dr. Chesney. And usually, the anxiety is the symbolic expression of the conflict. Once you bring the Hidden Emotion to conscious awareness, and the patient deals with, you will nearly always see a dramatic and sudden reduction in the anxiety, or even a complete elimination of the anxiety.

Essentially, Dr. Chesney seemed to be saying, “private practice won’t work for me and you can’t convince me that I’ll be successful no matter what!” Could it be that some hidden feelings was getting in the way? If you haven’t yet watched the video, take a guess. Then watch the video and you’ll find out what the Hidden Emotion really was! After you’ve finished the brief video, you can link to my final comments if you’re interested in learning a little more.

You can also link to a previous blog on the Hidden Emotion Technique as well as two previous Feeling Good Podcasts on the causes and treatments for anxiety, including the Hidden Emotion Technique:

023: Scared Stiff — What Causes Anxiety? What’s the Cure? (Part 2)

027: Scared Stiff — The Hidden Emotion Model (Part 5)

David

If you are reading this blog on social media, I appreciate it! I would like to invite you to visit my website, http://www.FeelingGood.com, as well. There you will find a wealth of free goodies, including my Feeling Good blogs, my Feeling Good Podcasts with host, Dr. Fabrice Nye, and the Ask Dr. David blogs as well, along with announcements of upcoming workshops, and tons of resources for mental health professionals as well as patients!

Once you link to my blog, you can sign up using the widget at the top of the column to the right of each page. Please forward my blogs to friends as well, especially anyone with an interest in mood problems, psychotherapy, or relationship conflicts.

Thanks! David

Cool Video for You!

Cool Video for You!

Here is a cool short video promoting my upcoming summer intensives from two highly esteemed colleagues, Jill Levitt, PhD, who is the Director of Training at the Feeling Good Institute in Mt. View, California, and Taylor Chesney, Ph.D., who is he Director of Training at the Feeling Good Institute in New York City.

 

This year, I am actually offering two four-day summer intensives for mental health professionals. One will be in beautiful Banff, Canada and the other will be in Burlingame, California. The only difference is that the Burlingame intensive will include two dynamic evening sessions, featuring live personal work, whereas the conference in Banff will feature optional hiking with David each evening.

The intensives are almost always the most effective and rewarding training conferences of the year. Here are the details:

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: A Four-Day Intensive Training

July 17 – 20, Banff, Canada

For more information, click here

Phone: 604.924.0296  Toll-free: 1.800.456.5424

High Speed, Drug Free Treatment of Depression and Anxiety Disorders–

A Four-Day TEAM-CBT Advanced Intensive

July 31 – August 3, Burlingame, California

For more information, click here

phone: 800-258-8411

If interested, move quickly as the dates are fast approaching and they often sell out, as attendance is limited at both events. I hope you can join us, and look forward to getting to know you if you attend!

All the best,

David

If you are reading this blog on social media, I appreciate it! I would like to invite you to visit my website, http://www.FeelingGood.com, as well. There you will find a wealth of free goodies, including my Feeling Good blogs, my Feeling Good Podcasts with host, Dr. Fabrice Nye, and the Ask Dr. David blogs as well, along with announcements of upcoming workshops, and tons of resources for mental health professionals as well as patients!

Once you link to my blog, you can sign up using the widget at the top of the column to the right of each page. Please forward my blogs to friends as well, especially anyone with an interest in mood problems, psychotherapy, or relationship conflicts.

Thanks! David

Summer Intensives Coming Soon!

Summer Intensives Coming Soon!

I am offering two four-day intensives for mental health professionals this summer, in Banff, Canada and Burlingame, California. These are always the most effective and rewarding training conferences of the year. Here are the details:

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: A Four-Day Intensive Training

July 17 – 20, Banff, Canada

For more information, click here

Phone: 604.924.0296  Toll-free: 1.800.456.5424

High Speed, Drug Free Treatment of Depression and Anxiety Disorders–

A Four-Day TEAM-CBT Advanced Intensive

July 31 – August 3, Burlingame, California

For more information, click here

phone: 800-258-8411

If interested, move quickly as the dates are fast approaching and they often sell out, as attendance is limited at both events. I hope you can join us, and look forward to getting to know you if you attend!

All the best,

David

If you are reading this blog on social media, I appreciate it! I would like to invite you to visit my website, http://www.FeelingGood.com, as well. There you will find a wealth of free goodies, including my Feeling Good blogs, my Feeling Good Podcasts with host, Dr. Fabrice Nye, and the Ask Dr. David blogs as well, along with announcements of upcoming workshops, and tons of resources for mental health professionals as well as patients!

Once you link to my blog, you can sign up using the widget at the top of the column to the right of each page. Please forward my blogs to friends as well, especially anyone with an interest in mood problems, psychotherapy, or relationship conflicts.

Thanks! David

042: Shame-Attacking Exercises

042: Shame-Attacking Exercises

Picture 9Making a Fool of Yourself — On Purpose!

In this podcast, David and Fabrice discuss a mind-blowing technique developed by the late Dr. Albert Ellis to help individuals struggling with shyness. It’s called Shame-Attacking Exercises. Essentially, you do something bizarre in public to overcome your fear of making a fool of yourself; and you will probably discover that the world doesn’t come to end. When used skillfully, this method can be incredibly liberating.

However, there are several ethical considerations. First, before therapists can ask their patients to do Shame Attacking Exercises, therapists have to do Shame-Attacking Exercises themselves! David explains his first, terrifying Shame-Attacking Exercise in a Chinese restaurant in New York after giving a talk at a workshop sponsored by Dr. Ellis.

In addition, therapists have to be careful in the way they use Shame Attacking Exercises, and who they use them with. You have to have an excellent therapeutic alliance with your patient, and the patient has to trust you. In addition, the exercises have to be in an appropriate location—for example, it would be disrespectful to do them in a hospital. And you have to be careful that the Shame Attacking Exercises is not aggressive or frightening to other people.

He also describes how Shame-Attacking Exercises helped a man and a woman he treated who were both afraid to flirt with people they were attracted to, and in both cases, he had to push fairly hard since the patients put up stiff resistance to the idea.

TEAM-CBT includes many powerful techniques, and while they have the potential to bring about rapid and often fantastic change, they also have the potential to hurt if not used skillfully and appropriately. Any listeners who are interested in using these techniques should first consult with a mental health professional to make sure the techniques are appropriate and likely to be helpful to you.

All that being said, you will (we hope) LOVE this podcast!

In upcoming podcasts, David and Fabrice will address questions on OCD (Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder) submitted by several listeners. Is OCD an organic illness? Are drugs necessary in the treatment? What’s the prognosis? David will describe powerful, drug-free treatment methods based on the four models he uses to treat all anxiety disorders: the Motivational, Cognitive, Exposure, and Hidden Emotion Models.

 

Subscribe

Summer Intensives Coming Soon!

Summer Intensives Coming Soon!

I am offering two four-day intensives for mental health professionals this summer, in Banff, Canada and Burlingame, California. These are always the most effective and rewarding training conferences of the year. Here are the details:

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: A Four-Day Intensive Training

July 17 – 20, Banff, Canada

For more information, click here

Phone: 604.924.0296  Toll-free: 1.800.456.5424

High Speed, Drug Free Treatment of Depression and Anxiety Disorders–

A Four-Day TEAM-CBT Advanced Intensive

July 31 – August 3, Burlingame, California

For more information, click here

phone: 800-258-8411

If interested, move quickly as the dates are fast approaching and they often sell out, as attendance is limited at both events. I hope you can join us, and look forward to getting to know you if you attend!

All the best,

David

If you are reading this blog on social media, I appreciate it! I would like to invite you to visit my website, http://www.FeelingGood.com, as well. There you will find a wealth of free goodies, including my Feeling Good blogs, my Feeling Good Podcasts with host, Dr. Fabrice Nye, and the Ask Dr. David blogs as well, along with announcements of upcoming workshops, and tons of resources for mental health professionals as well as patients!

Once you link to my blog, you can sign up using the widget at the top of the column to the right of each page. Please forward my blogs to friends as well, especially anyone with an interest in mood problems, psychotherapy, or relationship conflicts.

Thanks! David

Feeling Good Podcast Request: More Live Recorded Trauma Treatment, Please

Feeling Good Podcast Request: More Live Recorded Trauma Treatment, Please

 

Hi Dr. Burns,

A request for a future podcast, if I may:  The session you did with “Mark” and his son, “Oliver,” was awesome!!!  I’ve listened to it several times.  That paradoxical agenda setting technique is just genius (because it’s so genuine)!  And I’ve been using it with depressed/low self-worth friends and clients with amazing results!  Any chance you could do a session like that with someone struggling with severe trauma?  I would love to see how you adapt your TEAM approach to working with trauma clients.

By the way, I wanted you to know you are welcome to use my full name on your website, if that would be helpful to you.  I’m honored to be quoted!

V. Ritchie Pruehs, LMFT
Employee & Student Assistance Program
LOMA LINDA UNIVERSITY HEALTH/Shared Services

 

Feeling Good Podcast - Fabrice

Hi V,

Thought you might enjoy this photo from my podcast host, Fabrice Nye, Ph.D. We took the photo last Saturday morning during a recorded therapy session with Marilyn.

Thanks for another wonderful email. The upcoming live therapy with Marilyn will show you how I work with someone experiencing severe trauma, in this case, a recent diagnosis of terminal cancer. Also, I’ve been doing trauma workshops around the US for the past three years, always with a live demonstration on the evening of day 1 with a volunteer from the audience who has experienced trauma. I will be doing more trauma workshops in the fall, and I think one will be in Southern California again. I’ll be updating my workshop page soon to include the new dates and locations, but I’m pretty sure it will be in Woodland Hills, CA, November 9 and 10. Perhaps you can come to it!

In addition, I hope to have many trauma examples in the new book I am writing, some with links to the actual recorded sessions. You can also see how I treat trauma if you click here. The session you will link to is with a woman who experienced three decades of rape and domestic violence. I have always found that trauma cases are the easiest to treat, which I think may be the opposite of the way most people think about it. It is a great honor to be able to provide rapid and profound relief to individuals who have been suffering so severely and for such a long period of time.

I have treated approximately 40 patients who have experienced severe traumas in the past several years, including rapes, beatings, horrific accidents, severe medical problems, childhood abuse, family tragedies involving injuries or deaths of children, psychological exploitation, and more. Almost every individual I’ve worked with has experienced a complete, or near-complete, elimination of symptoms in just one two-hour session using the new TEAM-CBT techniques.

The rapid changes are due, in large part, to new techniques I have developed to reduce or eliminate what has been called therapeutic “resistance.” I’m glad you are seeing some of the same amazing results in your work! It is SO EXCITING to have these new tools available.

I believe that TEAM represents a significant breakthrough in treatment, but it requires considerable commitment to learn it since it is not a gimmick or formula, but a systematic and highly individualized approach to treatment of all patients, and not just those struggling with the aftermath of a traumatic experience. And in my teaching, I have learned, sadly, that it can be difficult, sometimes, to pry therapists loose from their current orientations, even though their outcomes might fall far short of what one might hope.

So stay tuned and stay in the loop! Fabrice and I really appreciate your thoughtfulness and interest!

All the best,

David

If you are reading this blog on social media, I appreciate it! I would like to invite you to visit my website, http://www.FeelingGood.com, as well. There you will find a wealth of free goodies, including my Feeling Good blogs, my Feeling Good Podcasts with host, Dr. Fabrice Nye, and the Ask Dr. David blogs as well, along with announcements of upcoming workshops, and tons of resources for mental health professionals as well as patients!

Once you link to my blog, you can sign up using the widget at the top of the column to the right of each page. Please forward my blogs to friends as well, especially anyone with an interest in mood problems, psychotherapy, or relationship conflicts.

Thanks! David